I often get asked by clients and friends what I eat in a day. The truth is, I eat differently almost every day. I definitely have my go-to meals and snacks, but what I eat depends on what groceries I have at home, how busy my schedule is, if I’m working out, what I’m craving, the weather, and many other factors. The foods I eat are what is best for my body in terms of energy, nourishment, and enjoyment. I listen to my body to see what it needs so that I’ll feel better after eating than I did before. What is very important to note is that what works for me will definitely not work for everyone. We all have different taste preferences, dietary restrictions, medical conditions, health goals, and nutrient needs, and it is vital to take all of this into account when coming up with a meal plan.
This picture shows a sample menu of a typical day for me:
- Breakfast: oatmeal topped with berries and a skim milk latte (Yes, I drink coffee and no, I will not make you give it up)
- Morning snack: apple with some almonds
- Lunch: Mexican quinoa salad and clementines
- Afternoon snack: multigrain crackers and cheese with cucumber slices
- Dinner: tofu-vegetable stir fry
- Dessert: strawberries and dark chocolate chips
You can see that all of these meals and snacks are balanced, meaning they contain lean protein, high-fibre carbohydrates, fruit, vegetables, dairy, and healthy fats. This helps to keep me full until my next meal, stabilize my blood sugar, subdue cravings, and give me the energy needed to carry out daily tasks.
What’s not listed is the pizza, burgers, cookies, chips, and french fries that I DO eat. It is a common (but understandable) misconception that dietitians never eat these types of foods. We are human and we do crave this stuff! We also know that it is perfectly acceptable to eat these foods from time-to-time. You won’t instantly gain weight or clog an artery if you occasionally treat yourself to the foods that you love, and satisfying cravings may actually help with weight management.
Dietitians are your go-to source for coming up with an individualized meal plan or eating regimen that works best for you. And that means including ALL of the foods that you love.