Every new year, some “resolutions” are just standard – we continue to reuse and recycle them. One of such is Lose Weight! Closely related goals are: keep fit, eat healthy, exercise, and all those resolutions we really never got to work on. We are #BusyDoingTheExactOpposite.
So, I decided to put up a few winning articles to assist readers (and myself) achieve these elusive goals. I found this diet plan on Good Housekeeping. It highlights simple meals for one week, and these can be repeated to fill up the month. I hope it helps. If it doesn’t, watch this space. One of my posts on diet will hopefully work for you!
Hear the word diet, and what comes to mind? For starters, pain, guilt, and pants that won’t zip up — and let’s not forget food that tastes like cardboard. If it’s good in your tummy, it must be bad for your body, or so goes the old thinking. But how can a diet succeed if you never get the flavors you crave? That’s why we designed this plan not only to help you lose the pounds, but also to give you the tastes you love. Whatever fattening food you long for — sweet, spicy, or savory — we’ve got the low-cal version.
• 1 1/4 cups bran flakes cereal topped with 1/2 banana, sliced
• 1 cup fat-free milk
• Spinach Salad: Top 3 to 4 cups baby spinach leaves with 1 hard-cooked egg, chopped; 2 strips cooked bacon, crumbled; 5 mushrooms, thinly sliced; 1/3 cup croutons; 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese; 3 slices red onion. Toss ingredients together, then drizzle with a flavored vinegar, such as red wine, balsamic or seasoned rice vinegar.
• Savory Asian Patty: Mix 1 pound ground turkey breast with 8-ounce canned water chestnuts, diced; 2 garlic cloves, minced; 4 green onions, thinly sliced; 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce; 4 teaspoons soy sauce. Shape mixture into 4 patties. Freeze 3 for later use. In nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray, cook patty over medium heat until thoroughly cooked throughout. Serve with a side dish of 3/4 cup cooked rice tossed with 1 teaspoon soy sauce, 1 teaspoon seasoned rice vinegar, and 1/2 teaspoon Asian sesame oil.
• 2 cups broccoli florets, steamed
• 1 cup berries
• One split, toasted English muffin sprinkled with 1/4 cup shredded cheese (any type). Broil until cheese melts.
• 1/2 grapefruit sprinkled with 1 teaspoon brown sugar
• Spread 1 slice raisin bread with 1 1/2 tablespoons peanut butter. Top with 1/2 banana, sliced. Drizzle with 1 teaspoon honey and cover with another slice of raisin bread.
• 1 cup fat-free milk
• Spicy Chicken Olé: On a 12-inch-long sheet of heavy-duty aluminum foil, center a 5-ounce skinless, boneless chicken breast. Top with 3/4 cup canned corn with peppers, 1/4 cup salsa, and 1 tablespoon fresh cilantro (optional). Fold foil into a packet. Bake on cookie sheet at 450 degrees F about 18 minutes.
• Avocado Salad: On lettuce leaves, arrange 1 tangerine, peeled and divided into segments; 1/4 ripe avocado, thinly sliced; 1 slice red onion. Sprinkle with 1 teaspoon lemon juice and 1/2 teaspoon olive oil.
• Cook 1/2 cup oats with 1 cup fat-free milk. Stir in 2 tablespoons apple butter, 1 tablespoon raisins, and pinch of cinnamon.
• Cut whole wheat pita in half. Spread 3 tablespoons hummus in each pocket. Stuff with tomato and cucumber slices and baby spinach leaves. Sprinkle stuffing with a flavored vinegar.
• 6 ounces light yogurt
• 1 kiwi
• Sweet Honey Pork: Cut 1 pound pork tenderloin into 8 slices. Pound slices into 1/4-inch-thick medallions. Freeze 6 medallions. Coat nonstick skillet with cooking spray. Cook 2 medallions over medium heat until lightly browned. Add 1/4 cup orange juice, 2 teaspoons honey, and 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard. Continue cooking pork until tender, about 3 minutes.
• Apricot Couscous: In 1-quart saucepan, heat 1/3 cup chicken broth; 2 dried apricots, cut into thin strips; and 1/4 teaspoon grated orange rind until boiling. Remove from heat; stir in 1/4 cup couscous. Cover and let sit 5 minutes. Serve with 1 cup steamed green beans.
• French Toast: Dip 2 slices raisin bread in a mixture of 1 egg and 1 tablespoon fat-free milk. In nonstick skillet melt 1 teaspoon butter. Fry coated bread until golden, turning once. Spread with 1 tablespoon jam.
• Top 3 to 4 cups salad greens with 1/2 cup water-packed white tuna, drained; 1 small tomato, cut into wedges; 2 green onions, sliced. Drizzle with a mixture of 1 teaspoon olive oil and 1 tablespoon flavored vinegar.
• 1/2 whole wheat pita
• 6 ounces calcium-fortified orange juice
• Savory Stir-Fry: In nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray, lightly brown 3 ounces beef strips over medium-high heat. Add 1 1/2 cups frozen stir-fry vegetables and 1 tablespoon bottled stir-fry sauce. Cover and cook over low heat until the vegetables are tender-crisp. Drizzle with 1/2 teaspoon Asian sesame oil. Serve over 3/4 cup cooked rice.
• Mexican Burrito: Beat 1 egg with 2 tablespoons grated cheese. Add dash of cayenne pepper sauce. Cook in nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray. Place over warm 6-inch flour tortilla, top with 1/4 cup salsa, fold tortilla around filling.
• Spread 1 tablespoon light mayonnaise on 2 slices rye bread. Layer 2 ounces thinly sliced extra-lean ham, 1 ounce sliced cheese, 4 dill pickle slices, 1 jarred roasted red pepper, 1 onion slice, and lettuce leaves between bread.
• 1/2 grapefruit
• Chili-Rubbed Spicy Salmon: Coat 5-ounce salmon fillet with a mixture of 1 teaspoon chili powder, 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin, 1/4 teaspoon red pepper, and 1/8 teaspoon salt. Spray with cooking spray. In nonstick skillet over medium heat, cook until opaque, turning once. Serve with 2/3 cup refrigerated mashed potatoes and 12 roasted asparagus spears sprinkled with lemon juice.
• 1/4 cantaloupe wedge
• Smoothie: In blender, combine 1 cup fat-free milk; 1 frozen peeled banana, sliced; and 1 tablespoon peanut butter.
• Spread 2 teaspoons spicy brown mustard on 2 slices rye bread. Layer 3 ounces of thinly sliced lean roast beef with tomato and onion slices between bread.
• 6 ounces light yogurt with 1 tablespoon raisins
• Sweet Chicken with Grapes: In nonstick skillet with 1 teaspoon olive oil, cook 5 ounces boneless, skinless chicken breast; 1 tablespoon minced shallots; 1/4 teaspoon thyme; 1/4 teaspoon salt; and a dash of pepper until chicken is browned on both sides and loses pink color throughout. Place chicken on plate. Add 3/4 cup halved seedless grapes and 1/4 cup white wine to skillet; boil 1 minute. Pour over chicken.
• Serve with 3/4 cup cooked rice.
• 1/2 cantaloupe topped with 3/4 cup low-fat cottage cheese
• 1 slice toasted raisin bread, spread with 1 tablespoon apple butter
• Top 1 large baked potato with 1/4 cup grated cheese, 3 tablespoons diced avocado, and 1/4 cup salsa.
• 8 baby carrots
• Savory Veggie Burger: In nonstick skillet, add 1 teaspoon olive oil, 1 thinly sliced medium onion, salt, black pepper, and dried rosemary to taste. Cook until onion is tender and golden, stirring occasionally. Pan-grill one veggie burger. Mix 1 tablespoon light mayonnaise with 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard; spread inside whole wheat pita, halved. Cut burger in half and tuck into pita pockets along with baby spinach leaves and caramelized onion.
• 1 cup berries
Snacks That Satisfy All Cravings
Sweet, spicy, or savory? These tasty 100-calorie snacks hit the spot. Eat one a day, anytime.
• 6 ounces light yogurt
• 1 chocolate sorbet bar
• 1 Rice Krispies Treat
• 4 meringue cookies
• 2 fig bars
• 4 Hershey’s Kisses
• 1 cup mango chunks
• 4 cups jerk-flavor popcorn (spray light popcorn with butter-flavor cooking spray, toss, sprinkle with jerk seasoning to taste, and toss again)
• 3 California roll pieces with soy sauce and wasabi
• 10 baked corn chips with salsa
• 1-inch cube of Monterey Jack cheese with jalapeño peppers
• 12 mini barbecue-flavor rice cakes
• 20 roasted peanuts
• 1/4 cup hummus with celery sticks
• 50 very thin pretzel sticks