How To Create The Perfect Meal

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I get alot of “what are you making for dinner tonight?” from friends and family, and truthfully, from people who find out that I am a culinary nutritionist who cooks..alot.  I’ll let you in on a little secret: a key part of my strategy involves planning.  After all, I have three active kids with three very different schedules and a husband who likes to eat.  Yet before the planning can even begin, here is what I do to make sure almost every meal is in  healthy harmony.  I make the effort to make sure my meals strive for a complement of fiber, protein and fats.  With this strategy I often don’t need recipes to refer to and I am on my way to a satisfying, nourishing meal.

All Things Fiber. For me, a meal is not a meal unless there is a heavy dose of vegetables.  Fill up half of you plate with vegetables in season.  Right now, vibrant orange winter squashes predominate or dark leafy greens such as kale or collard greens take center stage.  Then think about some whole grains, such as brown rice, quinoa or hearty farro.  For a vegan or vegetarian component toss in beans such as black beans, chickpeas or lentils.  Fiber is filling, it keeps you fuller longer so you eat less calories in the long run.  Fiber is also necessary for good digestion and a whole host of other health reasons. Pile on the fiber, especially the veggies!

Add Lean Proteins.  Chicken breast, chunks of tofu, salmon. Protein also keeps you fuller longer so you eat less.  It help build and repair muscles.  We all need good, healthy proteins to round out our meals.

Don’t Forget The Fat. Remember when fat used to get a bad rap as the evil cousin of the food world?  Well, times have changed.  We food experts have always known that fat not only makes food taste better, it also helps to fill you up, slows digestion, and is a must for brain and heart function.  Focus on vegetables fats: diced avocado, extra virgin olive oil, walnuts, chia seeds.

Get Creative. When preparing your meals, add in some extras such as chopped fresh herbs, warming spices or a homemade vinaigrette.  Give your meal some spark and you have everything for a well rounded, perfectly balance meal!

Learn More!! Join my new, four weeks series Kitchen Consciousness, a hands-on experience of awareness and mindfulness that will get you feeling more connected and at peace with the most important room in your house – the kitchen. This exciting workshop starts January 30th, sign up today!

 

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