Patti is a Certified Dietary Manager and Certified Restaurant Manager. Her knowledge is based on her nutritional training and experiences.
Food Guide Pyramid
Many people need or want to lose weight at some point in their lives. Everyone thinks that going on a special diet will help them achieve this goal. Unfortunately, most diets simply just don't work. The only way to lose weight properly is by eating a well-balanced diet, which includes several servings from each of the 5 food groups every day. The key is moderation. Simply put, you can pretty much eat anything you want as long as you do it in moderation. Moderation is basically portion control. By controlling the portion of each food group, you will lose weight safely with a healthy diet plan and keep it off. When you eat a well-balanced diet that meets your individual dietary needs, you will not only lose weight but be able to maintain a healthy weight for your body and maintain a healthy lifestyle with proper nutrition.
Well-Balanced Diet for Better Health and Weight Loss
A well-balanced diet is usually considered to be a general diet. Most people need a 2,000 calorie diet to maintain proper nutrition and a healthy weight. Of course, calorie needs do vary from person to person depending on height, weight, certain ailments, and type of prescription medication taken. An Initial Nutritional Assessment should be performed in order to properly determine the appropriate amount of calories needed for each individual person.
Healthy Meal Plan
One Day Menu Plan Based on a 2,000 Calorie Diet
An easy way to creating a monthly menu plan for you and your family is to start out one day at a time. Once you get to day 30, you repeat that month every month after that. Of course, you will want to make a few changes for added variety. Basically, you will have a guide to follow for the following months making menu planning a lot easier.
Breakfast Menu Plan
Morning Meal - Day 1
- 3/4 cup 100% orange juice or oranges
- 1 oz. scrambled eggs
- 1/2 cup Malt-O-Meal
- 1 slice toast with 1 teaspoon margarine and 1 Tablespoon jelly
- 1 cup 2% milk
- 6 oz. choice of beverage, such as coffee or tea
Lunch Menu Plan
Noon Meal - Day 1
- 6 oz. cream of tomato soup
- 2 Saltine Crackers
- 2 oz. cheese for grilled cheese sandwiches
- 1/2 cup peas & carrots
- 1/2 cup chocolate pudding with topping, like Cool Whip
- 1 cup 2% milk
- 6 oz. choice of beverage such as coffee or tea
Dinner Menu Plan
Evening Meal - Day 1
- 3 oz. baked ham
- 1/2 cup green beans
- 1/2 cup Au Gratin Potatoes
- 1 slice bread with 1 teaspoon margarine
- 1/2 cup fruit cocktail
- 6 oz. choice of beverage
Snacks - Day 1
- 2 oz. graham crackers (3 pieces)
- 1/2 cup orange juice
If you get hungry between meals, you can always eat some fresh fruit or yogurt to help hold you over until the next meal.
If you don't like a certain food item in the menu plan, you can always substitute it with an equivalent food item. For instance, let's say you don't like au gratin potatoes. You can always substitute it with mashed potatoes or a baked potato, etc.
How to Create Healthy Diet Plans
- Use a variety of foods from each of the different food groups in the Food Pyramid Guide.
- Balance your meals against each other. If you have one heavy meal, the other meals should be on the lighter side.
- Use portion control. Too much food can cause you to gain weight.
- Strive for variety from day to day. Especially for lunch and dinner meals.
- Treat the whole day as a unit, rather than a single meal.
- Plans meals with a variety of colors and textures.
- Except for bread, butter, and beverages, do not use the same food twice in one day without varying the form in which it is served.
- Do not use the same foods in the same meal, even in different forms.
- Use fruit in the breakfast meal and also for dessert.
- If you get hungry before your next meal, eat a light healthy snack in between meals.
- Reuse your monthly meal plans.
Free Meal Planning Templates
- Free Meal Planning Templates
Free templates to help with the meal planning process.
Weight Loss Program
coffeealera on May 03, 2012:
Great hub and recipes, thanks.
Patti Davis (author) from Rock Falls, Illinois on May 01, 2011:
Thank you. I believe everyone should have a diet plan for proper nutrition and better health. Adding fitness to your diet plan also helps in having a healthy lifestyle.
Liam Hallam from Nottingham UK on May 01, 2011: