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Loose Weight Gain Health One Meal at a Time

Updated on April 2, 2014

Making meals ahead, looking to the future, and yummy protein pancakes!

Cooking ahead for the week.
Cooking ahead for the week.
Preparing meals for the busy week ahead.
Preparing meals for the busy week ahead.
Looking forward and all the possibilities......
Looking forward and all the possibilities......
Yummy protein pancakes with oranges.
Yummy protein pancakes with oranges.

Loosing weight and staying healthy the easy way

Many people think that loosing weight and staying healthy is something that has to be difficult and expensive, but that doesn't have to be. It can be so easy and simple and really economical. It's mainly a matter of changing habits and doing it gradually.

  • Let us start by changing our shopping habits. KEEP IT FRESH!Avoid processed, precooked foods. Add more fresh fruits for snacks and desserts. It doesn't matter what fruit, if you like it, get it. Also, get fresh vegetables rather than canned.Whatever kind of meats, fish or poultry you like is fine, as long as it is not pre-prepared.Nuts are good also, just get them in the shell.
  • One rule of thumb to go by when you are in doubt about an item when you are shopping is ask yourself this, "WILL IT SPOIL OR ROT?" If the answer is yes, than it's something that is okay to get. If something has a shelf life that's very long you need to wonder what chemical(s)is in it to preserve it and what will that do to my body. I DON'T think the answer is that it will help preserve your body.
  • You will actually save money shopping this way too. Granted, you will have to do some prepping and cooking, but that all comes into play with learning to appreciate the real food before you. You will taste the real flavors of your food that are not hidden under salt and msg or other flavor additives. You do,I repeat,you do pay extra for all that processed and precooked foods that make your kitchen time "so convenient". Yes, so convenient, at the cost of your health and an unhealthy weight. On occasion, for "in a pinch"something like that might be allowable, but I think once you have switched over to "real food" you won't even like the convenience foods.
  • Okay, I did say "one meal at a time". That is how you start your transformation. Just make small changes, one meal at a time, until it becomes habit, then move on to another habit that needs changing. Start with just one meal out of your day, it can be breakfast, lunch, or dinner, doesn't matter which one you start with, just start.
  • If ,for instance, you choose to start by changing up your breakfast, you will make trades. You can trade say the artery clogging bacon, eggs, and toast for some fresh fruit and yogurt or a smoothie made with fresh fruits, juice, and some yogurt or milk or even a high fiber cereal without the sugar coating but, maybe a handful of blueberries or oatmeal would be a great breakfast item to switch to on a regular basis.Oatmeal provides roughage, it fills you up, and it is so good for you too, just watch your cholesterol levels adjust after making oatmeal a regular part of your breakfast menu.
  • For lunch, let's skip the fast food scene with the giant burgers, extra large fries and a half gallon sized drink. Granted, some of them carry healthier alternatives now, but you can do better fixing it yourself. A salad, don't you scrunch your nose up at me now, is a great choice. There is such a variety of ways you can change up your salads too: romaine lettuce, some orange slices, dried cranberries and walnuts or almonds with a raspberry vinegarette is one example; or a buttercrunch lettuce with fresh tomato wedges, a few slices of sweet onion and a drizzle of a lite ranch dressing and a few crackers or bagel chips on the side, you can make a salad up with just tomatoes, cukes, and some cubed cheese with your favorite vinegarette, just look in your fridge to see what you have (the revised fridge contents, not the "before" contents) and you should be able to find some fresh ingredients to put together for a great salad.At this point you might be thinking, what! I can't get through the rest of the day with just a salad.You don't have to count on that salad alone getting you through until dinner. Add some soup, not the salty canned stuff, to your lunch menu. Hot soup or cold it can go good with your salad or a healthy fresh sandwich made with some good whole grain bread or flat bread and some fresh lettuce, tomato, cucumber, onion, pickle and a meat or cheese, or make a roll up with a wheat tortilla. Just go easy on the condiment and hopefully you will not "pile on" the meat and cheese. Everything in moderation. If you are so full after lunch that you feel like taking a nap, you've eaten too much. Eat enough to satisfy, not stuff.
  • Dinner will involve the same sort of changes. Keep it fresh and tasty without the greasy over salted items. Beef is good, just keep it lean, and go easy with all of the flavor enhancers/sauce/gravy and instead liven it up with a less used area of the spice rack like some cayenne or paprika,cumin, some pepper and garlic. Experiment a little and see what you like.For chicken, just please do not deep fry or pan fry in all that dripping, greasy ,artery clogging oil/grease. If you pan fry, just put enough olive oil in the pan to keep it from sticking, or better yet, bake your chicken or fix on the grill.A little bbq sauce is fine, just don't give your chicken a pool of sauce to swim in( chickens don't swim), use just enough to flavor. For the evenings when fish is on the menu, same rule as chicken applies. Deep frying is just not a good choice. This is not to say you must throw out your deep fryer. Just use it on a very occasional basis.It would be best to put it away while you are still trying to shed the excess pounds though. Everything in moderation.
  • Okay, I've touched on meats for dinner, the rest should be easy. Just keep it fresh. Green beans, potatoes, yams, beets,squash, peas are all good. You can boil,steam,blanch,pan fry( with just a little olive oil), add some mushrooms if you like or onions, garlic, leeks, sweet peppers,or hot peppers. There's also rice or pasta, just avoid drowning these in a cheese sauce or the like. A side salad, some soup, applesauce, cranberry sauce(yes you can have it even if it isn't Thanksgiving)or a small dish of fruit or fruit salad can round out your evening meal.
  • You can have dessert too! Just keep it fresh and everything in moderation. Fresh fruit is the best dessert. Sweet, juicy and satisfying it can help to satisfy that craving for sweet, fill you, and it takes time to cut, peel, and eat it so you won't be "inhaling" it. You can have almost any dessert you like really, portion it accordingly though depending on just how rich it is and just remember............everything in moderation.
  • Snacks are allowed and encouraged. You don't want to struggle to make it until your next meal and then end up blowing it all and eating everything in sight. Again, just stay clear of greasy, salty snacks and chips or sugary cookies or such. Instead keep some nuts on hand and plenty of fresh fruit or some baby carrots and , I think you'll like this one, .......chocolate. Yes! a small amount of dark chocolate can actually be good for you, releasing endorphins and satisfying that sweet tooth. Now, that is just a small piece each day and dark chocolate, not white or milk chocolate.
  • I must make mention here of beverages as well. It will benefit you greatly if you stay clear of sodas and replace them with water. Even the diet sodas are not good for you, it's the carbonation as well as any ingredients that we can't pronounce. An occasional soda will not kill you, but occasional is a relative term, so it would just be best to avoid them,period.Water should be your "main" beverage. Green tea is a good choice as well as juices and other teas. Alcohol is very calorie laden and will not be beneficial to your weight loss, but as I continue to stress, "everything in moderation".A rare /occasional glass of wine or light beer can be fine. Just as long as you can stop at "one".
  • I hope this will help you to learn to make healthier choices and to savor the vast array of flavors in foods. Hopefully, you will eventually get to where you leisurely eat your meals and really taste your food instead of gulping it down in just a few minutes time. Make your dinner time a relaxing ritual in your day, talk to the people around you, be in the moment and enjoy the foods before you, the aroma ,colors, textures, and flavors.
  • You might enjoy expanding your cooking horizons. Learn to cook more of your food from scratch. It can be a real life changing experience. You may even experience an "Aha!" moment. I hope so.
  • No diet article would be complete without mentioning exercise. Of course, if you have any health issues, please get your doctor's approval before going on any new diet or exercise program. Your choices for exercise are limited only by your health conditions. If you like walking, biking,jogging, swimming, jazzercize, kickboxing, or dancing or????? just "do it". We must, as the old addage goes,"use it or loose it". Get off your duff and do SOMETHING! Endorphins released from exercise will make you feel sooooo much better. You'll be glad you did. If you have a buddy to do this with, all the better. You can inspire one another to keep going. There's alot can be said for encouragement and support. Not all of us have that at hand,but that's okay, just do what you need to do.......move it.
  • To sum it all up, loosing weight and staying healthy is a matter of changing habits and making better choices.:changing how we shop, how we cook our food; and making better choices for healthy food and beverages and don't forget to get up and move!
  • For more tips, advice, examples and inspiration go to facebook and check out Sydney Manning's fitness page, or fit_boss_girl_sydney at Instagram and Tumbler


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    • LoosingIt profile image

      LoosingIt 3 years ago

      Thanks, Johnd460! I'm so glad you found this too. It's so good to hear that you found it informative as well. I really don't know what to tell you as to Google's system for placement. Now, there's an article to research. Haha.

    • profile image

      Johnd460 3 years ago

      I was just seeking this info for some time. After six hours of continuous Googleing, at last I got it in your web site. I wonder what is the lack of Google strategy that don't rank this kind of informative websites in top of the list. Generally the top sites are full of garbage. efdffedbeega