Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Food Pyramid

Life can be busy, but it is important to find ways to get the right nutrition from all of the food groups. For me I find it key to prepare for a week in advance. Every Sunday I get my groceries and plan my breakfast, lunches and snacks for a week, I do not plan for dinner as I like to make a decision the same day and go to the supermarket for fresh fish, meat or produce. I have become a huge fan of Eataly for dinner foods, while their prices can be a little high the options are endless!!!!

Well back to the food pyramid....

I find it key to write down what I eat daily in order to make sure I have had the right servings. Recently I came across MyPyramid and started using the site to enter my daily food intake. Along with entering your daily food intakes, this FREE service will compare your intakes to the 2005 Dietary Guidelines, break down nutrient intakes as well as compare your intake to the MyPyramid recommendations.

Often times it seems people have the most trouble consuming the proper portions of fruits and vegetables and I would like to present you with some ways to increase your daily intake:

- Toss fruit into a green salad for lunch - this will add extra flavor, variety, color and crunch
- Start the day with a daily double - have a glass of juice along with a bowl of cereal with fruit sliced on top
- Pre-cut vegetables - don't snack on chips and cookies keep bags of vegetables available, slice up peppers and cucumbers and put them in a bag or container, or buy pre-cut veggies if you have no time, if you have the vegetables available and pre-cut there is no excuse not to eat them
- Load up your sandwiches - 3oz of protein may not seem like a large enough serving to keep you full so load up your sandwiches with fresh vegetables such as tomatoes, spinach, cucumber, avocado and much more
- Fill up your plate - before you sit down for a meal take not of your plate, be sure that half of it is filled with vegetables as this food group should take up a large part of each meal

Remember, fruits and vegetables are good! Snack on some strawberries, have some mixed greens with balsamic vinegar, just be sure to have fun with your food, you will never imagine the combinations you can come up with.

 Below is a personal favorite salad combination that mixes Fruits and Vegetables:

- Romaine Hearts
- Grilled Chicken
- Strawberries
- Asian Pear
- Hearts of Palm
- Cucumber

I make my own dressing for this salad using Balsamic Vinegar, Extra Virgin Olive Oil and 1 Egg Yolk - I shake very well (this is usually enough dressing for 4 or 5 salads) - I use the Good Seasons salad dressing container.

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