This time of year, one might receive more dinner party invitations than time allows. So how can one stick with an eating plan without adding inches to the waistline? First, don’t stress out.
ELLIE’S “HOLIDAY HEALTHY-EATING” PLAN
Policies to Strive For:
- Start out with a (if possible) smaller plate. Strive for 5x’s more vegetables covering it than meat. Simple. No weighing or measuring.
- Cover your plate with nutrient dense vegetables such as broccoli, asparagus, green beans, peas, red/green peppers, onions, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts. (Physiologically, these foods create an alkaline environment in which cancer cells cannot thrive.)
- Consume 4-5 cups of vegetables daily. Vegetables are primarily water so you’ll hydrate yourself while consuming nutrients and fiber!
- Lean meats: 3-4 ounces of lean meat is all you need at one time, (approximate the size of a deck of cards).
- Your body needs variety. Vitamins, minerals, amino acids, enzymes, phytonutrients have different responsibilities. Everything’s meant to work together for good. Disregarding a vital nutrient will change your body’s chemistry.
Don’t allow guilt or faulty thinking to blind you to facts:
Many dieters avoid beef. There’s no need to do so. London Broil, Filet Mignon, Sirloin Steak, Tenderloin, eye of round or top round have approximately 6 grams of fat per 3.5 oz serving. Dark meat chicken, (legs/thighs) actually has a higher fat content at 11 grams per serving.
Beef also contains high amounts of B12 which is an energy vitamin! That doesn’t mean you should eat beef every night. Consume chicken, turkey or pork for variety. But a steak sandwich? No problem. Grill Sirloin, slice 3 oz, place on a whole grain roll, smother it in grilled mushrooms, peppers and onions, even add a thin slice of mozzarella. Include a green salad with 1 tbsp dressing. Are you suffering? No. Food should have flavor and be enjoyable to eat!
Lean pork, (loin) contains Thiamine, the “feel-good” vitamin. Add herbs, garlic, fruit, seasonings and consume nutrients!
Any broiled, grilled or baked fish; Tilapia, salmon, Swai, halibut, codfish, shrimp are wonderful additions to your eating plan. Add seasoning such as lemon, herbs, wine or salsa over fish for variety.
Add a whole grain; potatoes, corn, brown rice, barley, pasta. You mean I can eat potatoes too? Aren’t potatoes bad for me? A potato contains vitamins A, E, D, K, C, B1, B2, B3, B6, folate, choline, calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, zinc, copper, manganese and selenium. Does that sound like something God wants you to avoid? Resist covering with tons of butter, sour cream or drowning it in oil and it’ll stay healthy. Sweet potatoes are even more nutritious!
Pasta? Again, buy fibrous whole grain. Create tomato sauces with lots of vegetables! I’ve replaced heavy cream with a smaller amount of Neuchâtel/light cream cheese and parmesan, creating a fabulous 20% fat alfredo sauce!
Your typical dinner should look like this: 60% fresh fruits, vegetables and whole grains. 15% comprise grilled, broiled or baked lean protein. The rest, 25%, can be filled with good fats: olive, canola oil, avocados, salad dressing, coconut, nuts or an occasional desert. We are adults, we live under grace and we can choose what we want.
Begin your New Year determined to be a New Creation.
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” (2 Corinthians 5:17)