I often get asked what my typical menu looks like. It’s a fair question since I spend time helping other people refine theirs. Since I point out mistakes people are making that have a direct impact on their goals, the least I can do is offer up my choices that are almost always worked into my meal plans.
I try to find creative ways to put them together in combination, have any one of them as a ‘stand-alone’ part of a meal or use as a snack. That’s part of the fun that comes with eating right…make it so your meals aren’t boring!
These foods aren’t boring and are great foundations that can be used so many ways at any time of the day. So get creative with them.
Eggs. Eggs are one of the most perfect proteins. By incorporating egg whites into your diet (with a small amount of egg yolk), you can get a high amount of protein for a relatively low number of calories. Six egg whites will give you 99 calories and 21 grams of protein.
Options – Used as an omelette to start your day with some fresh veggies or home-made/fresh salsa.
Tomatoes. They’re loaded with vitamins, minerals, fiber, and phytonutrients. And because they’re particularly rich in vitamin C and carotenoids, they may boost heart health, fight oxidative stress, protect against a variety of cancers, and combat inflammation. Tomatoes also contain potassium, an electrolyte that helps maintain fluid balance.
Option – On their own, top of a salad, with some Goat Cheese make Tomatoes a versatile snack choice, or dices up and served over your lean protein choice.
Blueberries. This miniature super-fruit is chock-full of nutrients and antioxidants. A daily cup or two of blueberries can help reduce cell damage. They also promote healthy blood pressure and contain complex carbs and fiber to help sustain energy and keep you in the game.
Option – Add them to your oatmeal or in a protein shake (check the protein show for ideas.)
Fish. A powerhouse of lean protein, fish lets you load up without blowing your calorie budget. The very leanest choices include white-fleshed fish like flounder or tilapia, as well as most shellfish, including lobster. Even dark-fleshed fish like tuna and salmon are considered lean, and the fat they provide (in the form of fish oil) can help regulate hormones and metabolism and reduce inflammation. Stay away from calorie bombs like deli tuna salad and deep-fried fish or calamari.
Option – Grilled and served on a bed of the next super food!
Dark green leafy vegetables. Popeye was right about eating spinach. The antioxidants found in dark green vegetables help counteract the oxidative muscle damage that comes with exercise. So vegetables like broccoli, collard greens, lettuce, kale, and our hero spinach, should be high on your list.
Option – Salads, on their own, under your lean protein choices, in your omelette, the options are endless!
Green tea. If you’re working out regularly, giving your body a constant supply of antioxidants can promote quicker recovery on a cellular level. And drinking green tea is a good way to vary your antioxidant intake. On top of its antioxidant properties, green tea can help protect the cardiovascular system, increase metabolic rate (which supports weight control), and may provide some anticancer and blood pressure-reducing benefits.
Option – There isn’t an option here…I drink several a day.
So there you have it! No, these aren’t the only things I eat…just ones that are always at the top of my list. I swap them in and out for other great choices for my nutrition.
What are yours? Do you have any great standbys? Let me know.