Simplify your Meals
Updated: Nov 7, 2021
When people find out that I am a dietitian, they often make two assumptions: 1. I love cooking and 2. I ALWAYS eat 'healthy', never indulge and judge others for their food choices. In all actuality, this could not be further from the truth! I definitely eat a balanced diet but I absolutely don't deny myself (looking at you Taco Bell). While I don't hate cooking...I don't love it either, which is why I try to simplify my meals as much as possible.
I tend to follow the 'plate method' when it comes to eating. Essentially I frame my meals after the MyPlate recommendations set forth by The USDA (see below for a visual).
I really love this method because there is an emphasis on what you *can* have as opposed to what you *cannot* have (*cough* keto, paleo, Atkins *cough*). Rather than restricting myself, I focus on what I can add to my plate. For example, if I know I want to have chicken for a meal, I think about what vegetables and complex carbohydrates I can pair with it. Lately I have been making a lot of 'buddha bowls', which is pretty much the plate method in bowl format. I start with a complex carb (brown rice, farro, quinoa, roasted potatoes) add in my protein (chicken, fish, tofu, beans, lentils) toss in a variety of veggies (shredded carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts) and then top it with some kind of sauce (hummus, sriracha, soy sauce, dijon aioli). It is so filling, always turns out amazing and is 100% customizable.
The plate method is just a guideline but can be very helpful. Living a healthy lifestyle does not need to be restrictive and certainly does not need to be boring. So if you ever find yourself at a loss on what to make for dinner, consider the plate method and get creative! You can also check out my Instagram and TikTok for more recipes and meal ideas!