Building Balanced Meals

With busy days ahead, it can be difficult to prioritize your meals. However, if you can honour the fact that your body needs to be fuelled throughout the day, it will better support you in tackling all the tasks you want accomplished!

Protein

If you think about a soda cracker compared to a piece of chicken or fish, you know that a soda cracker begins to dissolve in your mouth, while you have to chew the protein options to help break them down. Protein is digested slower and really helps us to feel full. Our bodies can only absorb a certain amount at a time, so incorporating it into every meal and snack can help you get enough in a way that your body can utilize.

If you get tired of certain proteins, try mixing animal and plant-based sources at the same meal. Add a mix of chicken, fish or lean ground beef and beans or lentils to up the protein of your meal. Aim for ~1/4 of your plate to be a protein source.

 

Carbohydrates

Although carbohydrates have gotten a bad rap, they are essential for providing our brain and our cells with energy! Skipping out on carbohydrates at meals often lead to cravings later in the day. It’s better to include them in your meals and respect what your body needs. Choosing more complex carbohydrates (whole grains, fruit, starchy vegetables etc.) can slow down digestion.

Focus on filling ~1/4 of your plate with a carbohydrate that you enjoy, like rice, quinoa, potato or sweet potato, bread or pasta.

 

Fibre

Incorporating vibrant veggies into your lunch and dinner meals can increase satisfaction and help you feel more full overall. It can be overwhelming to think about eating half a plates worth of one kind of veggie, so add more variety if you can, and have them in ways that you enjoy! Choose the veggies that you like most.

Aim for ~1/2 your plate to be filled with your favorite mix of veggies. Roasted, steamed, BBQ’d, raw or in salad form! If you or your family struggle with enjoyment of veggies, add them to pasta sauces, chilis and soups to up the fibre content of your meal.

 

Fat

Fat is the slowest digesting macronutrient, therefore helping to ensure your meal is filling. A small amount goes a long way, but make sure that you have a fat source coming in at each meal.

For example, slice avocado on your salad, add butter to your potatoes, or add a drizzle of olive oil to your roasted veggies.

For some tips on meal planning – check out this blog.

August 29, 2018