Ask Kim! Meal Planning
Wednesday, May 1, 2019
ASK KIM! Yeah, that’s right! I figured my next article should be one about the many times I am asked about nutrition; in the gym, outside the gym, at church, you name it, they’ll ask! So here’s a legit question, and my real answer, about nutrition! And possibly the first installment of “ASK KIM!”.
Are you good at meals or meal planning? Need some ideas.
First, meal planning is a must! I make a meal plan and then do my shopping based on that. Here are a few key principles I use:
Get the basics.
I honestly make the bulk of my meals following the protein/veggie/carbs, and maybe fruit, formula. Fruit is usually a snack for us, so I don’t really need to serve it at a meal. I use carbs sparingly... not always having a pasta, rice, or bread with our meals. When I do, I try to plan the meal so that there are lots of veggie options so that they will fill up on those rather than all carbs. I steam or roast my vegetables predominantly, using a lot of seasonings; herbs etc. I try to stay away from seasoning packets or sauces. Sauces have a lot of hidden calories, sugar, fat, additives and preservatives in them. So, if I find the meats and vegetables that the family loves, and find a few different ways to prepare them, I can make a variety of combos for meals. Of course, we love our traditional meals like lasagna, tacos, a few different baked, and crock pot meals. I actually have a list in my phone of all the meals my family like and then when I meal plan before shopping, I can pick 7 of them, make my shopping list from that, and I’m all set. We do not really have “extras” like chips, cookies, “snack” foods etc... we do fruit or vegetable for a snack, maybe a homemade yogurt parfait, and chips and salsa is a favorite treat.
If YOU won’t/shouldn’t/can’t eat it, the rest of the family probably shouldn’t either.
I try to remember that the eating lifestyle I have is ultimately how my children will need to eat in their lives in order to stay healthy, active, and within a healthy weight. So, if I’m feeding them in a way that will force them to work on major changes to their eating habits later in life, I’m doing them a disservice. So, I cook the same for everybody.
Food is fuel. It’s that simple.
Culturally, we have attached so many emotions to eating experiences that we don’t know how to eat for nourishment. We celebrate with food, reward with food, bribe with food, commiserate with food, deal with stress/emotions with food, and entertain ourselves with food. With that many emotions/purposes for eating it’s no wonder we have an obesity epidemic. I have learned to meal plan and grocery shop with that in mind. Food is fuel for our bodies. We need the micro and macronutrients in order for our organs and systems to run optimally, ward off disease, and stay in good physical and mental health.
Tonight we’re having cod fillets, sautéed zucchini with red onion, shrimp power bites (with spinach, edamame, and broccoli in it), and bacon wrapped goat cheese filled jalapeños. I made a potato soup over the weekend, that I’m adding sweet potato to for additional nutrient impact, which will be another side.
I hope this Q&A was beneficial to you! Many times, the thoughts and questions of the people I encountered regularly are the same. So a question from one, is a question by most. That being said, here’s to future installments of “ASK KIM!”.
If you’d like to ask me a question, please don’t hesitate to email me.
Kim Elsing Greater Green Bay YMCA
Certified Personal Trainer, FNS, Nondiet Weight Management Certified, Trained in Holistic Life Coaching through GAHP (Global Association of Holistic Practictioners)