Are you trying to follow a healthier diet or live a healthy lifestyle? Or perhaps you just want to promote heart health by eliminating processed foods from your diet. It’s tricky to find meals that are not only nutritious but delicious.
Whatever your reason, this 7-day nutritionally balanced meal plan is perfect for you because it’s fast, easy, and free!
The balanced meal plan I proposed below is not a diet. While it is healthy and nutritious, it contains no gimmicks or fads.
It contains well-rounded tasty meals for a whole week that will keep you full and satisfied for up to 4 hours after eating. The ingredients are inexpensive and readily available at most grocery stores, so there’s no need to overspend on food.
I think it’s a good time to put nutrition first. We should start paying attention to what we eat and allocate more time to cooking, so it wouldn’t hurt to learn what a healthy plate should look like.
I’m going to write you an example of a 7-day meal plan below. Keep in mind that it’s not a diet or weight loss plan, and it’s not necessarily right for everyone.
What is the meal plan?
A meal plan is a set of specific guidelines for your diet and shopping list. It will be used to guide you to the balanced nutrition that fits you best and helps you reach your goals.
When it comes to dieting and healthy eating, meal plans are one of the most researched topics. Let’s face it: a lot of people overindulge in food and drinks that contain unnecessary calories, which results in gaining weight.
By using a proper meal plan, you can lose excess weight and eat healthily without neglecting your favorite foods. Meal plans also help reduce food cravings, as well as help you develop a healthier relationship with food.
A meal plan fits into dietary goals, whether they are weight loss, gain, or simply wanting fresh (and healthy) meals. Many people don’t use one because they are unaware of its benefits.
What should a healthy plate look like?
A healthy plate should be a colorful mix of different foods, from the light green of salad to the rich brown of roasted vegetables.
A healthy plate has a little bit of everything on it: vegetables, protein, carbohydrates, and healthy fats!
This is how it should look like:
A large portion of vegetables (about two-thirds)
Half of your plate should be filled with vegetables!
Fruits and vegetables are packed with vitamins, minerals, fiber, antioxidants, and phytochemicals that can help protect against heart disease, cancer, and type 2 diabetes. Plus, they’re low in calories so they won’t make you gain weight.
Choose colorful vegetables that are low in calories and high in nutrients like carrots, tomatoes, peppers, broccoli, cauliflower, and leafy greens.
A portion of protein (about one-third)
¼ of the plate should be filled with proteins.
Protein is important for the growth and repair of body tissues like muscles, skin, and blood cells.
Protein can be found in meats (beef, pork), poultry (chicken), fish (salmon, tuna), beans/peas/nuts/seeds (lentils), dairy products (milk, cheese), which are high in fiber and protein but low in fat and calories.
A portion of carbohydrates
The other quarter of your plate can be filled with good carbohydrates like whole grains and starchy veggies.
Whole grains are rich in nutrients such as fiber, B vitamins, iron, magnesium, and zinc.
Whole grains include bread, pasta, cereal, rice, and other foods made from wheat, oats, or barley kernels that haven’t been stripped of their outer coats (bran) or processed into white flour.
Don’t forget the healthy fats:
Healthy fats are essential for your body to function as it should. They help your organs work properly and keep you feeling full longer.
Healthy fats can be found in foods such as avocados, olive oil, coconut oil, nuts and seeds, fish, eggs, and butter.
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Let’s see what this balanced meal plan looks like:
Breakfast: 2 slices of toast with tuna
Lunch: baked vegetable skewers (eggplant, zucchini, peppers, onions, tomatoes) + a few cubes of baked sweet potato + 100 g of meat or fish of your choice + yogurt dressing, garlic, and a few ripe tomatoes
Dinner: leftover skewers from lunch + 100 g baked salmon.
Breakfast: 4 muffins with broccoli + 1 cup of unsweetened green tea
Lunch: spicy curry with chicken and vegetables + 40 g of brown rice boiled and added separately
Dinner: salad with greens of your choice, cherry tomatoes, bell pepper, green onion, ½ avocado, and a can of tuna + a tablespoon of yogurt as a dressing.
Breakfast: 1 cup Greek yogurt + 50 g oatmeal (soaked overnight) +½ tsp cinnamon + ⅛ tsp ground cloves + 1 tbsp chia seeds (soaked for 5 minutes) + ½ cup wild blueberries
Lunch: a portion of baked salmon + a portion of frozen vegetables sautéed in a hot pan with a tablespoon of olive oil and seasoning
Dinner: chicken with curry and vegetables.
Breakfast: 250 g ricotta cheese, a few diced mangoes, 2 teaspoons of oatmeal, and a teaspoon of peanut butter
Lunch: salad with ½ avocado, a few diced mangoes, lettuce, a little goat cheese, a tablespoon of chopped walnuts, ½ teaspoon of balsamic vinegar
Dinner: Curry, this time with tofu instead of chicken.
Breakfast: 4 whole-grain crackers with 2 teaspoons of peanut butter and 5-6 strawberries
Lunch: 2 small whole-meal loaves filled with ½ avocado, cherry tomatoes, a spoonful of yogurt, green onions, and chili flakes
Dinner: salad with 1 can of cod liver, spinach, arugula, green onion, some red beans from the can, a spoonful of pumpkin seeds, a few puffs of balsamic vinegar + 2 whole grain crackers.
Breakfast: 2 slices of whole meal bread spread with homemade hummus, ripe tomatoes, some arugula, and a teaspoon of parmesan
Lunch: baked turkey thigh with a few cubes of sweet potato and baby carrots
Dinner: salad with a sliced boneless turkey thigh, lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, green onions, 30 g of goat meat, radishes, a few drops of balsamic vinegar, and 2 whole meal crackers.
Breakfast: 3 poached eggs on a bed of cherry tomato slices with a cube of butter and oregano, a cube of feta cheese grated on top, and a mini salad with arugula, tomatoes, and balsamic vinegar
Lunch: lentil pasta with tuna
Dinner: Shrimp cooked with a little butter, white wine, and cherry tomatoes.
A few rules you should be following:
- Get all the macronutrients for the day.
- 2 servings of vegetables at least
- Try not to snack or when You do, choose a fruit or something with protein.
- Hydrate only with water, no juices, or sweetened teas
- Carbohydrates only in the first part of the day (breakfast and lunch)
- 5 workouts per week, 2 cardio, 3 weight training, but also 3-4 stretching sessions.
For any beginner, sticking to a balanced meal plan and healthy lifestyle can seem like a daunting task. That’s why I’ve compiled the above easy-to-follow 7-day balanced meal plan.
This is a healthy and nutrient-rich meal plan that can be easily incorporated into your everyday lifestyle. It will boost your metabolism, detox your body, and prevent illness by keeping you away from the germs that might cause you some problems.
This meal plan is easy on your pocket; you don’t have to buy any expensive food or go to any specialty store. You just need to choose recipes wisely and make sure that they have all the essential vitamins and minerals needed for a healthy lifestyle.
I hope that this small guide and this meal plan help to make it easier for you to start living a healthier life.
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