Monday, April 4, 2011

Simplifying Meals

   Paul has been trying to drop a few pounds to get ready for cycling this summer.  Something about a stationary bike in your basement just doesn't cut it!  Using both the exercises and the eating plan in  8 Minutes In The Morning  is how I lost my weight after Elijah was born and I pulled it back out for the exercises after the cardiologist recommended weight lifting with high reps and low weight to help my blood pressure.  The exercises are really easy to stick to but also produce good results.  Paul decided to give the whole thing a try and chose to buy a Kindle version just for ease and ended up getting this version instead because it had a different eating plan.  The plan in the original is eating x amount of protein a day, x amount of carbs etc.  The new one is so simple, is working great for him and has simplified meals over here a lot!

   The basic idea is for your main 3 meals a day you have a 9" dinner plate (average size) and fill it half with veggies, 1/4 with protein, 1/4 carb and a fat equal to a tablespoon of flax oil.  You can check out the book for the full plan, serving sizes and the recommended snacks etc.  There's a bit more to it, but what I love is the simplicity of the meal.  It's a great guideline for anyone.  Now I look at all meals in those easy terms.  What will be our protein?  What will be our carb?  And what will be our veggie?  Maybe other people think that way but I just looked at a full pantry or fridge and thought what are we going to eat.  I also never thought about a half plate of veggies.  My younger kids have smaller plates but instead of a 1/4 of it full of veggies it's now 1/2 full and they know they can get seconds of anything once their veggies are gone.  The funny thing is they don't seem to notice it's more veggies.  We've always had the eat your veggie rule but never gave so much.  Maybe because all the plates look the same??  I don't know but it's working.

  Here's a sample of a few simple meals we've had:
Breakfast- A chopped apple (takes the place of a veggie at breakfast), 12 walnuts (fat), a slice of our homemade coffee cake (carb) and a glass of milk (protein)

Lunch- Leftover rice (carb), leftover salmon patty (protein), salad (veggie) with oil based dressing (fat)

Dinner- Chicken cooked in the crock-pot with a marinade (protein), steamed  green beans

We were afraid this would really up our grocery bill but surprisingly it hasn't.  If anything it's lower.  Maybe because we are eating less snacky type things???  I don't know but I'll take simple and healthy any day!

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