Choose Your Plate

Do you ever wonder what you should be eating?  What makes a healthy meal?

Well, there are many, many responses to those questions.  But I am here to tell you my version.  Well, scratch that, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics’s version for healthy individuals.

Remember the old food pyramid?  Confusing, wasn’t it??  Now we’re using the plate method.  If you have children, they have this in many US school cafeterias.

Now, I could make this a truly boring informative post.  But I won’t.  Because I care about you and don’t want to lose you as a reader. Also because I’m being very lazy and don’t want to explain it in detail.

So go here.

The gist:  Make lunch and dinner plates:

  • 1/2 vegetables~broccoli, cucumber, cauliflower, green beans,  the list goes on and on!
  • 1/4 starches/whole grains~ brown rice, quinoa, lentils, whole wheat pasta, bread, etc
  • 1/4 lean protein~ white meat poultry, fish, lean ground beef, nuts, etc

Yes, says 1/2 plate fruit and vegetables.  BUT if you’re eating fruit at breakfast and fruit for snacking….you’re most likely getting enough fruit. Eat your veggies 🙂

Psst, by the way, at my work we count corn, peas, potatoes, and beans as starches.

I’m here today to show you it doesn’t have to be boring!!!  Here are two examples from my dinners this week:

Grilled chicken, Butternut squash, and Veggie mix
Counting the squash as the starch here….kind of a grey area.

Grilled Mahi Mahi, Red potatoes, and Green beans.

Does this mean every. single. meal. has to look like this?  No.  Unless you’re perfect.  And if you are, please oh please teach me your ways.  For those of us who are human, just try to make most of your meals include these parts.

For instance, if you grab a burger and fries, probably don’t have enough veggies in there.  So maybe have a side salad and either eliminate the fries or get a small order.

If you’re getting a meal at a restaurant, ask to substitute!!!  Seriously, as a former restaurant worker I can tell you that it’s no trouble at all and all that we had to do was push an extra button.  Which if you think about it, is more movement to press extra buttons, a few more calories burned…so you’re doing them a favor!  Kidding….obviously.

Anyways, if you find yourself wondering how you can improve your eating habits, the Plate Method is a good place to start.  It will not solve all of your problems, but it is helpful. You have to start somewhere, right?

Now, what are some of your burning nutrition questions?? I’d love to answer a few 🙂


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