I often get asked, “What do you eat”? With so many fad diets and quick cleanses being promoted, I would like to explain a little bit about why I eat the types of foods I typically eat on any given day.
A balanced diet is super important for your overall health. Each day I like to incorporate the five food groups, plus a small amount of healthy fats, as these all provide different nutrients and benefits my body needs to function optimally. Here’s what a day on my plate looks like:
Breakfast 1: ¼ cup steal cut oatmeal made with ½ cup almond milk, ¼ banana, 1 tbsp. silvered almonds and 1tsp of coconut oil.
Breakfast 2: Spinach and sauteed sliced shiitake mushroom omelet with a side salad (2 cup spring mix greens), 3 0z raw mixed nuts, 2 tsps. extra virgin olive oil) and avocado.
Snack: Apple slices and a handful of raw walnuts
Lunch: Turkey slices in a sprouted wrap, with tomato red onion and hand full of romaine lettuce leaves.
Snack: Berry smoothie, made from 8 oz. water, 4 oz. unsweetened low-fat vanilla almond milk, 1 scoop Vega Sport vanilla flavored protein powder, handful of spinach and kale, 1 tsp. of almond butter, 1/2 cup of fresh raspberries and 1/2 cup frozen strawberries.
Dinner: Salmon and asparagus in foil with 1/2 cup of quinoa.
Notice that I include carbs in all of my daily meals. That’s because carbohydrates are so important in our diets. They are our bodies’ preferred source of energy and provide amazing nutrients such as protein, fiber and B vitamins. I always stick to complex carbohydrates, because our bodies don’t break these down quite as quickly. Eating carbs helps to keep me full throughout the day and they give me the energy I need to workout and do all my daily activities. My favorites are sweet potato, sprouted bread, quinoa and oats.
Fruit is another important part of my diet. I absolutely love snacking on fruit when I am feeling like something sweet! They are generally a good source of vitamins, potassium and dietary fiber. The berry smoothie that I included above is amazing when you want something delicious and sweet.
Vegetables and legumes should be a main part of any diet as they are full of vitamins, minerals, fiber and a range of phytochemicals, which help the body to fight disease. Apart from this, vegetables and legumes are so good for you because they undergo minimal processing. Many people fill their diets with heavily processed foods that are full of additives, fat and sugar. By choosing to eat more vegetables you are eating wholesome ingredients that have not lost their nutritional value through extensive refining processes.
I just love protein. This is what my body craves more than any other food group. Lean meats are a regular part of my diet. Foods such as fish, chicken, turkey and eggs are some of our body’s best sources of protein. Protein is important because it helps to keep us full in between meals, helps curb those sugar cravings, and helps our bodies recover after a workout or a long day. Lean protein is unique because it provides our bodies with all nine “essential amino acids,” which out bodies cannot produce on their own. They also contain vitamins and minerals that can be difficult to get from plant foods. I like to incorporate a source of protein in each of my main meals.
Milk products such as Greek yogurt, also play an important role in a balanced diet because it contains protein and good amounts of calcium, which is important for bone health. I usually incorporate yogurt in some of my smoothies, however one of my favorite snacks is Greek yogurt with berries. If you are ever feeling like you need something sweet and satisfying, you need to try this
Healthy Fats are another super important part of my diet. Many people shy away from these due to the word “fat,” however it is important to understand that not all fats are “bad fat.” Foods such as avocado, nuts and seeds are able to provide your body with “essential fatty acids,” which your body is unable to produce on its own. Eating a small amount of healthy fats is important because they play an important role in cell structure, cell function and inflammation processes. Healthy fats are also great for maintaining healthy skin and hair. Avocado is my absolute favorite and I add it to my omelet everyday!
As you can see I eat a large variety of food on any given day. Not only is this good for my body, but it also keeps my meals interesting. You should also know that I don’t eat the same meals every single day. Sometimes I will eat homemade protein pancakes with berries instead of oatmeal or eggs for breakfast, and replace the wrap for a quinoa salad at lunchtime. Regardless of what meals I eat, I always try to use the freshest and minimally processed ingredients as possible.
What are your favorite go to meals? Let me know on my Facebook page!