Healthy lunch Ideas

Healthy Habits Pt 2: Cleaning Up Lunch

Last week in THIS post we discussed how to tweak your breakfast in order to instill long lasting energy, satiate hunger and trim your waistline. Hopefully you were able to implement some of these ideas and are ready to hear all about healthifying lunch!

During the day you should be tapering your meals down.

Eat breakfast like a King, lunch like a Prince and dinner like a Pauper. We ate a larger amount of the days calories at breakfast so now it is time to lunch like a Prince…

Lunch is not necessarily going to be smaller, but should be lighter than breakfast in terms of calories and carbs. It is important to carryover the same breakfast principals such as incorporating quality protein, healthy fats, non-starchy veggies and good natural complex carbs. In order to decrease the amount of calories consumed at lunch while still staying full it is important to include lots of non-starchy vegetables.

I personally experience a energy slump between 11:00 and 2:00PM which is reversed with a nutrient dense midday meal.

Lets think about how to put together a healthy lunch…

Start with a protein:

  • chicken
  • turkey
  • ground beef
  • ground turkey
  • salmon
  • cod
  • shrimp
  • organic deli meats (like Applegate)
  • etc.

Add in fat(s):

  • grassfed butter
  • olives, olive oil
  • full fat cheese (if able to tolerate)
  • avocado, avocado oil
  • coconut oil
  • almonds, brazil nuts, chia seeds, flax seeds, pumpkin seeds, walnuts, pecans, etc.
  • pesto sauce
  • etc.

Go crazy with non starchy veggies:

  • artichokes
  • asparagus
  • broccoli
  • brussel sprouts
  • cauliflower
  • cucumber
  • eggplant
  • garlic
  • green beans
  • jicama
  • kale
  • mushrooms
  • onion
  • peppers
  • spinach, romaine, arugula and any other leafy green
  • etc.

Incorporate a small portion of complex carbs like good whole grains and starchy vegetables (sorry! no refined breads and pastas) :

  • beets
  • green peas
  • pumpkin
  • rice
  • squash
  • sweet potato
  • sprouted whole grain bread (Ezekial bread!)

Add a little dairy

  • If you are able to tolerate dairy I recommend opting for grassfed choices

Now that you’ve chosen from the list, just put it all together…

Sample lunch ideas:

  1. Spinach salad topped with nitrate-free organic deli turkey, chopped beets, jicama, cucumber, olive oil and a sprinkle of walnuts
  2. Romaine Lettuce Wraps filled with flank steak, peppers, onion, rice and salsa
  3. Sandwich using Ezekial bread, grilled chicken, a slice of organic nitrate-free bacon, a slice of grassfed cheese
  4. Spaghetti Squash with pesto, ground chicken meatballs and sautéed veggies

Bottom Line:

  • eat lunch like a Prince making it lighter than breakfast. The meals listed above may seem like a lot, but loading up on non-starchy veggies increases the volume of your meal while still remaining low in calories and carbs
  • incorporate protein, healthy fats, lots of non starchy veggies, and a bit of complex carbs
  • feel free to add in a little grassfed dairy if you can tolerate it

Stay tuned for my take on Dinner this time next week*

elf nooo gif

My December Recap and What’s to Come in January

I cant believe the most wonderful time of the yearrrr is over!

The past few years I’ve been away at school for majority of the holiday season, but this December I was finally home and able to immerse myself in the Christmas season.

Here’s a recap of my December:

I’m currently doing my dietetic internship along with grad school to become a Registered Dietitian. My clinical rotations at the hospital ended just in time for Santa Con!!!

I crashed at my friend Gabbie’s apartment in the east side the night before Santa Con to get a head start on the festivities. We started out with a group of 8 girls at a bar called the Headless Horseman. You would think the name of this bar would kill the Christmas spirit but there were Santa’s everywhere and it was lit like my Christmas tree.

About a week later my boyfriend and I ventured into the city (again) to see the tree at Rockefeller Center. The tree came from Oneonta, NY! Which is where we went to school (and met) so obviously this was the Oney reason we went! Just kidding, I’ve been harassing my boyfriend to see the tree since October. Post tree we made our way to 212 Steakhouse in Midtown to chow down on some red meat and red wine.

212 Steakhouse Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

I highly recommend this restaurant! From the skirt steak to the truffle-mashed potatoes, everything was divine. The cozy size and quaint atmosphere coupled with Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and other classics playing softly in the background give this restaurant the perfect ambiance for a date night. The menu is quite pricey but we had a Groupon, which cut the bill down a bit.

As for the rest of my December it was spent relaxing with family, shopping for gifts, binge watching ABC Family’s (not Freeform! Never Freeform!) 25 days of Christmas, and snacking on some sweet treats! This brings me to my closing statement…

December is a time to enjoy oneself, gather with friends and family and indulge once in a while in some peppermint bark, chai tea lattes and reindeer sugar cookies.

With that being said, while my diet has been pretty decent this month I have still treated myself to more goodies than usual.

How do I know this? Well sugar causes inflammation. About a year ago I had removed the sweet stuff from my diet and my body was freed from its chronic pains. The recent increase in sugar has caused my joints to get stiff, chronic headaches to ensue and threw my TMJ right out of remission.

On January 2nd (because it’s a Monday hehe) I am taking on the 21-Day Sugar Detox challenge created by Diane Sanfilippo. I plan on checking in and giving recaps of my experience while on this challenge. If you are interested in joining me check out THIS link for more information.