Changing your eating habits can be intimidating, I know. It may even feel like you’re leaving everything you love behind. All the midnight snacks, takeouts, sweets…  But, although it may seem like that at first, soon enough you realize that eating healthy will not only make you feel and look good but can also taste darn good!  The key is finding a lifestyle you love (not one you dread) so that you stick to it.


Food processing isn’t always a bad thing: Cooking and preparing raw ingredients at home is also processing them. But the word “processed” is almost always reserved for commercial foods, usually packaged. Highly processed foods are industrially formulated mixtures that are no longer recognizable as their original plant or animal sources—everything from hot dogs and margarine to ice cream, candy, and many packaged snack foods. Such foods, which supply more than half the daily calories in most U.S. households, lack key nutrients and fiber and are high in sugars and sodium. 

One of the best ways to have a healthy diet is to prepare your own food and eat in regularly. Pick a few healthy recipes that you and your family like and build a meal schedule around them. If you have three or four meals planned per week and eat leftovers on the other nights, you will be much farther ahead than if you are eating out or having frozen dinners most nights.
It's easy to get sucked into the lure of the restaurant menu when you're hungry and everything looks good. You don't have to order the plain grilled chicken breast with steamed veggies—that would be boring. Order what you'd like, but balance the meal out with the rest of the day, says Zied. If you know you're going out for a steak and potatoes dinner, go easy on the meat and starch at lunch. Make sure you're also fitting in healthy fare like whole grains, fruit, veggies, and nuts and seeds in the other meals and snacks that day. That way a hunk of steak won't derail your diet and you'll leave happy.

“Of course, juice is not free of sugar and calories,” Sharp says. “But compared to soda and other sweetened beverages like sports drinks, it has more nutrient density without added sugar and preservatives.” Basically, if you have to choose between a vodka Coke and a screwdriver (vodka with orange juice), pick the latter. And make sure the juice is fresh, since carton juices can pack just as much sugar as the soda.
A nutritious, well-balanced diet – along with physical activity and refraining from smoking – is the foundation of good health. Healthy eating includes consuming high-quality proteins, carbohydrates, heart-healthy fats, vitamins, minerals and water in the foods you take in while minimizing processed foods, saturated fats and alcohol. Eating in this manner helps you maintain your body’s everyday functions, promotes optimal body weight and can assist in disease prevention.
A potato comes from the ground, an egg from a hen. But where did that Pop-tart come from? "Unprocessed, whole foods will give you the most benefits," Berman says. Processing takes out nutrients such as antioxidants and fiber. What's worse is that a lot of processed foods tend to sneak in things that aren't really necessary like extra sodium and sugar. There's nothing wrong with indulging the occasional processed food craving (sometimes a bag of potato chips is too hard to resist!). But if you're trying to shop healthier altogether, be on the lookout for products that have been minimally processed.
A quick note about the machines that make juices and smoothies. You can use a cheap kitchen blender to make juice but the soupy grit will need to be strained thru a coffee filter which takes time. It’s just not powerful enough to turn a whole fruit or vegetable – skin, seeds, and all – into a smooth drink. A more expensive machine is required. However, your cheap blender is very useful for adding avocado or banana to your juice – foods that clog most juice machines.
When I delved into his juicing website, I realized that he wasn’t shoving fruit-willy-nilly into his juice, throwing thirty bananas in a blender or forcing his blood chemistries out of whack with fiber-less, protein-stripped sugar water. Instead, this guy has actually cracked the code on how to juice the right way – especially for athletes and exercise enthusiasts.
For the pesto sauce, bring a small pot of water to a boil and season with ½ teaspoon of salt. Boil the kale for 2 minutes and drain. Add the kale, garlic, parsley, walnuts, ¼ teaspoon salt, and a couple cracks of pepper to a food processor or blender. Blend until well incorporated then add 3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil and continue to blend until the mixture looks like a loose paste, adding more oil if necessary. Check for seasoning, add more salt if needed.
The idea of this meal plan is for you to focus on enjoying your food and having meals prepped for you that you know are well-balanced so you don’t have to worry about counting calories. I find calorie counting to be tedious and I get overly obsessive so I like to choose meals that are naturally healthy and nutritious to add into my meal preps like the recipes I’ve chosen for you today.

As found in nuts, seeds, fish, avocados, and plant oils. You should consume these high-fat foods in place of other high-calorie foods; otherwise, you’ll be adding excess calories to your diet. For instance, substitute olive or canola oil for butter, and nuts for chips. Fatty fish may reduce the risk of heart disease and have other benefits, attributed at least in part to their omega-3 polyunsaturated fats.
Between work and the gym, I’ve been getting home pretty late these days. Even though I love to cook, it’s usually just about the last thing I want to do when I finally walk through the door. I’ve been making a lot of healthy sheet pan dinners, and I really love how easy they are. Most of these healthy dinner recipes take only a few minutes of prep and then the oven does the work. And since everything for these easy recipes cooks together on one pan, cleanup is a breeze! Line your pan with foil or parchment for even easier cleanup.

Rough skins, such as pineapple and avocado, and any pits and seeds should be removed. But apple skin and citrus peel are edible (except the orange) and full of nutrients. Also the pith, that soft white material just under the rind, also has nutrients. As for pulp, add mayonnaise to it for a delicious mock tuna salad. Or add pulp to pancakes, cookies, and even hummus. Some seeds and greens will upset your stomach, so make sure you are knowledgeable about that before starting your smoothie adventure.


The contents of this website are for educational purposes and are not intended to offer personal medical advice. You should seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The Nutrition Source does not recommend or endorse any products.

Some meal prep recipes will freeze better than others. Proteins like chicken, turkey and beef will hold up well to freezing. Typically starches like pasta do not hold up well in the freezer as they’ll be mushy when thawed. Rice and potatoes are great candidates for the freezer. Many vegetables can be frozen, but veggies with a high water content, such as zucchini and lettuce, do not freeze well.
An important take-home message is to focus on the types of foods you eat and your overall dietary pattern, instead of on individual nutrients such as fat, dietary cholesterol, or specific vitamins. There are no single nutrients or vitamins that can make you healthy. Instead, there is a short list of key food types that together can dramatically reduce your risk for heart disease.
Eat like a tourist in Greece. The sunset over your office park isn't as stunning as the one over an Aegean beach, but a plate of grilled fish and fresh vegetables and a glass of wine is as delicious in Athens, Georgia, as it is in Athens, Greece. All the heart-healthy fats, minerals, and antioxidants in Mediterranean foods like hummus, olive oil, and feta can help lower your risk for heart disease, says Susan Mitchell, Ph.D., coauthor of Fat Is Not Your Fate (Fireside).
Hey hey it’s Tiffany from Creme de la Crumb! It’s blowing my mind a little bit that it’s January and that 2017 is HERE. I made a big long list of New Years resolutions – cause I’m a goal junkie like that – and healthy eating is near the top, as always. I’ve rounded up 40 incredibly tasty, healthy meals to keep me (and YOU!) on track this year. Take your pick, they’re all so delicious I can’t decide where to start!
If you are not used to eating a healthy diet that promotes your well-being, making gradual changes can help you improve the way you eat in the long run. You can substitute water for high-calorie, sugary drinks, for example, and switch from full-fat to low-fat dairy products. Selecting lean meats instead of fatty cuts and whole-wheat grains instead of refined grains can lower your intake of unhealthy fats and increase your dietary fiber intake. Fresh fruits and vegetables contain less sodium than canned, and snacking on fresh, crunchy produce like carrots, apples and cucumber slices is healthier than the fats and salt in chips.
To see how well the principles embodied in the Healthy Eating Pyramid stacked up against the government’s advice, Harvard School of Public Health researchers created an Alternate Healthy Eating Index with a scoring system similar to the USDA’s index. They then compared the two indexes, using information about daily diets collected from more than 100,000 female nurses and male health professionals taking part in two long-term studies.
Having diabetes does not mean you have to give up your favorite foods or stop eating in restaurants. In fact, there is nothing you can’t eat. But you need to know that the foods you eat affect your blood sugar (also known as blood glucose). You should eat regular meals, think about the amount you eat and make food choices to help control your diabetes better and prevent other health problems.
Hi Bridget, I would refer to each recipe to determine whether they are freezer-friendly or not. I would guess that the soups are all freezer-friendly, and maybe even the ground turkey for the lettuce wraps. Grain bowls and roasted veg tend not to freeze well (they end up very mushy). When doing grain bowl-type meal prep, I do 4 days at a time and store in the fridge (cooked chicken is good for 4 days, rice is OK for 5). Some people will do 2-3 days at a time and do a mid-week prep. I hope this helps 🙂
My husband and I made the chicken caprese and the korean chicken bowls last week for our lunch prep and we both loved them! The fresh ingredients are so yummy! I am an RN who works in the operating room and I got tired of paying for the cafeteria lunches (unhealthy and always the same old stuff). Last week we prepped our lunches and it was fantastic to have a gourmet meal at lunch every day. Thanks for the great recipes~ I am off to prep for the week !
Challenge yourself to come up with two or three dinners that can be put together without going to the store—utilizing things in your pantry, freezer, and spice rack. A delicious dinner of whole grain pasta with a quick tomato sauce or a quick and easy black bean quesadilla on a whole wheat flour tortilla (among endless other recipes) could act as your go-to meal when you are just too busy to shop or cook.
Obesity is not the only nutrition-related cause of disease onset and progression. Too much or too little of certain nutrients can also contribute to health issues. For instance, a lack of calcium in your diet can predispose you to developing osteoporosis, or weakening of your bones, while too much saturated fat can cause cardiovascular disease, and too few fruits and vegetables in your nutrition plan is associated with an increased incidence of cancer. Consuming foods from a wide variety of sources helps ensure your body has the nutrients it needs to avoid these health problems.

Obesity is not the only nutrition-related cause of disease onset and progression. Too much or too little of certain nutrients can also contribute to health issues. For instance, a lack of calcium in your diet can predispose you to developing osteoporosis, or weakening of your bones, while too much saturated fat can cause cardiovascular disease, and too few fruits and vegetables in your nutrition plan is associated with an increased incidence of cancer. Consuming foods from a wide variety of sources helps ensure your body has the nutrients it needs to avoid these health problems.
Spinach: Spinach is a powerful source of chlorophyll and glycoclycerolipids that protect the digestive tract from inflammatory damage.  These glycoclycerolipids are the main fatty acids that makeup the cell membranes of light-sensitive organs in chlorophyll containing plants.  They have powerful immune boosting and anti-cancer effects (8). Additionally, spinach is an important source of copper, zinc and selenium which boost immunity.
Did you know that above ground vegetables, particularly greens, contain anti-nutrients that can be potentially harmful at large doses. If you think about it, it makes sense. Plants want to survive so the parts that animals can see (above ground) contain some toxins to make them less appealing. This includes goitrogens, polyphenols, tannins, lectins, oxalates, etc. In small quantities, these are absolutely fine and even beneficial. However, when we juice, we need to use large quantities of these greens to actually create juice which can cause problems in some people.

To prep the kale for the salad, we’re going to add it to a large bowl with a little olive oil and rub all over the kale, massaging it until the kale reduces in volume and becomes less stiff. (This makes a huge difference in the texture of the kale and makes it much easier to eat. I like to buy pre-cut kale when I meal prep because it’s just easier and takes one less step out of the process.)

The saturated fats in animal foods generally boost levels of LDL (“bad”) cholesterol and have other adverse effects. To limit your intake, choose lean meats, skinless poultry, and nonfat or low-fat dairy products. It’s also a good idea to replace saturated fats with unsaturated fats (see next slide). Keep in mind, though, that not all saturated fats are bad for you; those in chocolate, milk, and cheese, for example, are more neutral in their effect on blood cholesterol. Trans fats from partially hydrogenated oils are even worse than saturated fats, but FDA regulations have now nearly phased them out of the food supply.
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