We all love food, and everyone has their own little guilty pleasures. Sadly, a lot of the time, these guilty pleasures can take over our diet, causing us to eat unhealthy food a fair bit. Well, it’s not sad at the time, as our naughty food tastes great! It’s only after a day of eating when we feel full and gross do we realise what we’ve done. Healthy eating is hard!
As an idea, healthy eating couldn’t be simpler. You just, well, eat healthy foods and stay away from the bad stuff, right? How can you go wrong from there? It’s not the idea of healthy eating that’s hard to understand, it’s more to do with putting it into practice. People struggle to stick to healthy diets all the time, and will quickly fall back into bad habits.
I find that a big reason behind this is that people don’t know what a day of healthy eating looks like. They know various healthy recipes, but how do you put all of this together to form a day filled with healthy food? That’s what I’m going to show you today as I’ve collected a few meals and ideas to provide an example of a really healthy day. There are a few tips and tricks along the way too, so give it all a read if you want to start eating better.
The first meal of the day is breakfast, and you shouldn’t skip it. Skipping breakfast will make you hungry before lunch, which leads to excessive snacking, meaning you dip into your guilty pleasures. You need a nice filling meal that gives you energy and keeps you going strong until lunch.
Here’s my idea for a healthy and nutritious breakfast to start the day:
- Rolled oats with a topping of your choice (I go for either granola, fruit, or both!)
- Small cup of coffee
Rolled oats are great as they’re full of slow-release carbs that provide with a lot of energy to last until your next meal. You can also eat quite a few of them without consuming lots of calories. You can make them in two different ways, either with milk in a microwave or with yoghurt the night before. The first option makes a type of porridge you can top with granola or fruit, and it’s lovely in the cold months. The second can be mixed together with fruit and put in the fridge to create overnight oats. This is great if you’re too busy to cook every morning as you can prepare the night before and you’re ready to rock and roll.
Coffee is good for you in moderation, it will give a little caffeine boost to help you start your day.
Mid-Morning Snack (Optional)
The breakfast I provided is designed to make you feel full for as long as possible. But, if you have a big appetite or your lunch break isn’t until 1pm, or later, then you might need a snack. At this point, don’t reach for those crisps or sweet treats, they aren’t healthy!
Instead, go with one of these options:
- A healthy shake
- Rice cake with nut butter
- Celery with almond butter
- Low-fat yoghurt
All of these ideas are much healthier alternatives to your typical snacks. We all know fruit is good for us, as is celery. The inclusion of almond butter just adds more flavour and makes it feel like more of a treat. You can get lots of healthy weight loss shakes that are packed full of nutrients and low in calories. These are ideal for a mid-morning snack to keep you going. Rice cakes with a nut butter of your choice are also delicious, and you get some protein from the butter. Yoghurt is also a good protein source and fairly filling.
Lunch is seen differently in different cultures. Over here, it’s not the main meal of the day. But, in somewhere like Italy, they eat big meals at lunch and lighter ones in the evening. For this day of eating, I’ve provided two lunch ideas that are light yet still fill you up enough to last until dinner.
- Two poached eggs on top of smashed avocado on sourdough toasted bread, sprinkled with feta cheese on top.
- Falafel (cooked or cold) inside a folded flatbread with lettuce, feta, and tzatziki sauce.
Either option is great here, it depends on your tastes. If you like the idea of the first one, but don’t like eggs, just get rid of them! Both meals provide a decent amount of protein, good carbs, and good fat too. All of this comes together to create a very well-balanced and nutritious meal.
Do you call it dinner or tea? I’m a dinner person myself, but I won’t hold it against you if you’re from the tea crowd. Regardless, this is the biggest meal of your day and the one where you can afford to eat a little bit more than the others.
Here are two ideas for a healthy and delicious dinner:
- Chicken fajitas with cooked peppers, salad, and homemade guacamole. Served with a side of brown rice.
- Brown tagliatelle pasta with a simple Italian pasta sauce and olives, peas, and spinach.
There are a meat options and a veggie option for you to consider. The first offers more protein, but the second is still healthy and nutritious. A great little tip is to use wholemeal wraps for your fajitas and brown pasta for the second dish. These are healthier options compared to the typical ‘white’ versions.
After Dinner Treat (Optional)
If you want an after-dinner treat/snack, then here are a few ideas that are a little bit naughty but still fairly healthy:
- Dark chocolate (high dark percentage)
- Low-fat frozen yoghurt
- Strawberries dipped in dark chocolate
- Protein bar
All of these things have a bit of sweetness to them, but they also provide nutritional benefits. Therefore, you’re not wasting calories by eating junk.
On that note, you’re ready to stop eating for the day, settle down with a cup of tea, and think about bed. Hopefully, this has shown you how easy it is to eat healthily all day long. Try out this exact meal plan, and then follow the same framework every day. Just find healthy recipes and put them in the meal slots. It’s super easy, and you can start eating healthy foods more often!