Healthy Meal Ideas Featuring Fish, Chicken, Turkey, Vegetables and Dessert

Healthy Meal Ideas

As more people are growing concerned with a healthy diet, more people are starting to look for healthier meal ideas. Healthy meals do not have to be complex or taste terrible. Here are some healthy meal ideas featuring a variety of foods to make your meal planning easier.

Fish Based Healthy Low-Calorie Meals

Fish is an incredibly healthy meat option because of the necessary Omega 3 fatty acids. For those who enjoy it, there are several options for a healthy meal based around fish.

Check out:
• Grilled Tuna Steaks with Salad
• Salmon with Asparagus and Steamed Potatoes
• Tuna Steaks with Cous Cous and Corn on the Cob
• Grilled or Steamed Salmon Seasoned to Taste and Served with a Vegetable Medley

Chicken and Turkey Based Healthy Meals

Chicken and Turkey are far healthier than red meats, and are great alternatives for the people who do not enjoy fish based meals.

Check out these ideas:
• Grilled Chicken with Whole Grain Rice and Steamed Vegetables
• Turkey Casserole with Tomatoes and Sweet Corn
• Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad
• Chicken or Turkey Wraps with Baked Potato
• Chicken or Turkey with Pasta and Steamed Vegetables

Healthy Vegetarian Based Meals

Vegetarian meals are a wonderful way to eat healthy. Even people who are not strictly vegetarian can make a more affordable meal by leaving out the meat component. Since protein and other nutrients found in meat can also come from produce, you don’t have to sacrifice nutrition or taste.

Check out these ideas:
• Stir Fry with your choice of vegetables
• Vegetable Curry with Brown Rice
• Fettuccine Alfredo (provided you still eat cheese products)
• Macaroni and Cheese (provided you still eat cheese products)
• Vegetable Soup
• Spaghetti with Marinara

Healthy Meal Tips for Dessert

Even when eating healthy, we are still going to crave sweet foods. This is where fruit salads, yogurt, and healthy whole grain cereals can come in handy. Freeze plain yogurt and top with a fruit medley to mimic ice cream. Try a Jell-O Pudding Snack, or making your own Jell-O parfait.

When choosing your healthy meal options, remember that fruits and vegetables are important. You can eat lots of them without worrying so much about your calorie intake. Consider low fat and low calorie alternatives to things such as butter and whipped cream. This will make your meals more healthy without having to sacrifice on taste!

If you want to get healthy meals on a budget, consider using a wholesale club to purchase your meat items in bulk. This will cut down on the price per pound and you can purchase several nights worth of meals at once.

To save time cooking, you can prepare all the meat together, freezing it until you are ready to use it. Steamed vegetables are available frozen and will steam in the microwave in the bag, so when you’re in a pinch you can thaw your cooked chicken, turkey, or fish, and serve it with the microwave steamed vegetables for a healthy snack in a hurry.

Easy Healthy Meals – 3 Simple Tips For Quick Healthy Meals

We all lead busy lives and the importance of eating healthy can often be overlooked. Preparing easy healthy meals can sometimes take a backseat.
If you have a family like me, you probably have to work a job (perhaps both parents) do the shopping, run errands, pick up the kids from daycare and run a household. All at the same time. Aarggg!

Having a few ideas for easy healthy meals up your sleeve can certainly take “a load off”.

One of the biggest problems people face when it comes to meal ideas and meal preparation is not having a basic plan. What do I mean by a basic plan?

Simple… You need to have a few things on hand. By that I mean; frozen meat like chicken breasts, steak, diced meat, ground or minced meat, fish.
Having these types of things in the freezer ready to go makes preparing easy healthy meals exactly that… Easy.

Keep things like fresh salad items in the cooler if it’s summer and potatoes, carrots, root vegetables and legumes on hand during winter. That way you can whip up a soup in next to no time.

Here’s Tip No1: If winter is on the way then perhaps it may be a good idea to invest in a slow cooker if you haven’t already. They’re fantastic kitchen appliances and are great for those hearty winter soups and heart healthy cooking. It’s so easy make up a large amount of soup and freeze it in single or double portions ready for defrosting and reheating. Homemade soups are always easy healthy meals and are often best prepared well ahead of time.

Tip No2: Cook meals well ahead of time. You can roast or poach a chicken for summer salads and have the meat in the fridge for a few days. All you do now is toss a little chicken through some lovely crisp leaves, a few juicy italian Roma tomatoes, a little homemade ricotta cheese with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil. Man oh Man… I making myself hungry!

Tip No3: Everyone loves Pizza. Especially a healthy pizza recipe. I like to make my own pizza mainly because I know how healthy it will be. Can’t be bothered making your own homemade pizza dough? No problem. I like to use flat bread also known as Lebanese bread as the base. Wholemeal of course. Spread a little tomato paste and mixed herbs on the bread, layer on your own toppings like cheese, tomato, ham, cooked chicken, capsicum (bell peppers), olives and anything else you like. You can create your very own healthy pizza recipe.

It’s easy to come up with plenty of good ideas for easy healthy meals is you have a few things on hand. Having a few ideas for easy healthy meals up your sleeve can certainly take “a load off”.

Five Food Groups Not Normally Associated With Preparing Healthy Meals

Here is a different take on preparing healthy meals for you and your family.

Our bodies are complex organic machines which can more than comfortably handle fats, carbohydrates, protein and anything else you might once have thought to be “unhealthy”, as long as we don’t continually barrage our bodies with heavily processed foods containing ingredients which act as toxins in our bodies.

It is only in very recent times that doctors have started to learn of this research and start to encourage their patients to more healthy meals containing much less of this one core ingredient, which is eaten by almost everyone, every day, without even realizing it.

So what is this critical ingredient?

Sugar – more specifically, Fructose which makes up approximately half of sugar as we know it.

Sugar is in basic terms 50% Glucose and 50% Fructose, and while Glucose is fine, the Fructose is now known to be a toxin in our systems.

So, while we have been diligently preparing what we have believed to be nutritionally balanced and healthy meals for our families, what we have been quite oblivious to is that sugar is contained in just about every processed food and condiment we place in front of our families daily.

Take Tomato and BBQ sauce – Eaten almost daily. These sauces contain more sugar than a can of soft drink, and that is way more than we need or our bodies can handle.

The challenge of creating healthy meals which contain minimal sugar but still taste great.

As mentioned in the title of this article, there are five core food groups we can turn to as a great starting points for creating delicious healthy meals the whole family will love. There are some basic foods you will also need to avoid if you are to create meals which are truly healthy, particularly for our kids.

Good foods which have no or low Fructose are:

Full fat dairy products:

Milk, cream, cheeses, yoghurt and butter all contain Lactose, a form of sugar which we have no trouble metabolizing and is not “bad” for us. Just don’t add flavourings (eg; flavoured milk or yoghurt) as the flavourings contain Fructose.

All meats:

Lamb, Pork, Beef, and all Game meats are fine as are Fish, Chicken Turkey, and Game birds. None contain fructose, and while lean is good, don’t panic about removing all the fat, as our bodies are comfortable with “managing” these types of fats.

Vegetables:

Most vegetables are low in Fructose and are great natural sources of natural vitamins and minerals and go perfectly with the foods mentioned above. Vegetables are a great healthy snack when eaten raw as well, so start encouraging your kids to eat vegetable “snacks” instead of heading straight to the pantry.

Eggs:

Eggs are a great source of protein and despite what we may have been told, are a healthy ingredient in any form.

Water:

No surprise here, but all too often our kids head straight for juices or sweet fizzy drinks which are loaded with sugar, so try changing to drinking water or milk with your meals.

So in a nutshell, the best and most healthy meals will contain some or all of the foods groups noted above. A good basic rule to work to is “if it tastes sweet, it most likely contains sugar, so avoid it if you can”.

Healthy Meals

When we are young, the concept of healthy meals is very black and white. Vegetables are good and fast food is bad. Cleaning your plate is good and being wasteful is bad. As we grow up, no one bothers to tell us that, in reality, individual foods are neither good nor bad- only too much food is bad. In fact, the idea that we need to clean our plates has gotten us into big trouble.

As it turns out, nutrition isn’t black and white at all. On a physiological level, it can be extremely complicated. Sometimes we do all the right things and still can’t seem to manage our weight, our energy, or our health. Of course, if we could only live on the Biggest Loser Ranch we wouldn’t have any of the obstacles that make eating healthy meals so complicated and impractical in the real world.

If only there were a few simple rules that made eating healthy simple?!

The good news is, there are three simple tips that can make healthy meals more of a no brainer. After all, we don’t all have the time or money to study nutrition, to visit a certified nutritionist, or to order all our meals packaged and ready-to-eat.

If you assess your diet regarding the three guidelines below, you will be doing a better job than most towards getting the nutrients and energy your body needs. (And by “diet” I don’t mean that four letter word that signifies perpetual deprivation but simply, what you consume daily.)

The Three Tips are to
1) keep your meals colorful
2) keep your meals small and frequent, and
3) keep your meals fresh.

As we explore these criteria in a little more depth, it will highlight some reasons you should incorporate them into your lifestyle.

1) Keep Your Healthy Meals Colorful

Our body needs six different nutrients to function optimally during the day. These include carbohydrates, proteins, fat, vitamins, minerals, and water. Most of us don’t have time or sufficient interest to make getting our daily allowance of amino acids and essential vitamins a scientific venture. So how can you make sure you are getting what you need? Answer: by keeping your meals colorful. It is that simple.

Picture a plate containing fish and chips beside a smoked salmon salad with a whole grain roll. One of these plates is monochromatic and the other has reds, greens, browns and whatever else your imagination used to dress it up. The more colorful plate has half the calories, more than twice the nutritional benefit, and will provide more lasting energy. Meanwhile, the monochromatic plate is also more likely to make you feel sluggish and desperately thirsty as a result of excessive sodium levels. The point is, picking healthy meals is a choice you are free to make.

While carbohydrates ( like bread, potatoes, rice, and starchy vegetables) and protein ( like meat, beans, and dairy) should be components of every meal, the more fruits and vegetables you add, the healthier and more colorful your meal will be. Even adding peas and carrots to the fish and chips plate would significantly increase the nutritional value of this dish. Presentation is not just for cooking shows- it is for your health, too.

People who eat mindfully (or in other words, don’t have a weight problem) enjoy food with all of their senses. Practice making your meals and snacks colorful by incorporating a variety of food groups. This way they will be a feast for your senses, your belly, and your body.

2) Keep Your Healthy Meals Smaller and More Frequent

A healthy eating schedule is going to vary from person to person. Three square meals a day is sometimes the only thing someone has time to prepare and enjoy. However, food is fuel. If you are hungry, eat. If you are not hungry, don’t. For many people, enjoying 4-6 smaller meals everyday actually helps them function more efficiently.

Deprivation is not beneficial for your body or mind. You have to eat to lose. However, most of us are used to mindlessly eating portion sizes that are larger than what we really need. You want to be satisfied but not stuffed.

More frequent, smaller meals keep your metabolism revved and make it less likely that you will store food as fat instead of burning it for fuel. It also keeps your energy levels and blood sugar levels steady which decreases the likelihood of overeating at your next meal or suffering crashes in energy that cause you to crave lousy, processed foods and sweets.

Anyone who has ever grocery shopped on an empty stomach knows that creating healthy meals is easier if you don’t let yourself get overly hungry. By making sure you have a healthy breakfast and healthy snacks available for the day ahead, you will be significantly less likely to feel the need to stuff your face and you will find it easier to manage your weight. Overall, focusing on eating to keep your energy up and your hunger under control will help you be a pleasant, healthy person.

3) Keep Your Foods Fresh

Eating healthy meals doesn’t mean buying packaged foods that say they are healthy on the outside of the box. Healthy meals should include fresh foods. If everything you eat is unwrapped, microwaved, delivered, or frozen, you need a serious diet overhaul. What your body craves is nutrients, not preservatives and added chemicals. Processed foods are more calorically dense and harder for your body to breakdown so they are more likely to be stored as fat than natural food.

If the ingredients list on a packaged food item is a bunch of words you don’t recognize or have never seen before, don’t buy it. Instead, build a skill for life and learn to cook the meal from raw ingredients. Ingredients that aren’t in your granny’s pantry, don’t habitually belong in yours. In other words,” if it doesn’t grow, let it go”. While it may seem like a convenient time saver now to buy the ready made stuff, preparing your own healthy meals will help you live longer, easily making up for the time it takes to prepare meals in the long run.

It takes conscious effort to incorporate these rules into your daily routine, but they will quickly become habitual with practice. Your efforts start in the grocery store where you can focus on choosing fresh foods and ingredients that will allow for plenty of nutritious choices for healthy meals and snacks in the days ahead. Then all you have to do is focus on including a variety of food groups to ensure you always add at least a splash of color. When it comes to fruits and vegetables, the more the merrier as far as your body is concerned.

Making color a priority, eating smaller meals as frequently as your hunger dictates, and seeking out fresh foods will pay off. In fact, assessing your healthy meals along these three guidelines might just help you save your health and your money. The more you fill your body with quality nutrients, the less you will crave U.F.O’s (unidentified food objects). After all, having access to and eating healthy meals is a luxury, not a punishment.

Cooking Healthy Meals – Make A Weekly Meal Plan For Cooking Healthy Meals

I have really grown to enjoy cooking and I do my best at cooking healthy meals for my family. One thing I have found to help me do this is to make a weekly meal plan. It keeps us from eating out too much (which also saves money) and helps with our waist lines too.

So at the beginning of a new week this is what I do. I sit down and make a shopping list for each meal I want to prepare for the week. Once you have everything you need for cooking a healthy meal it makes it hard to back out of making it.

Our breakfast I like to keep simple since we have a hard time getting going in the morning. I like to stick to eggs, turkey bacon or sausage, some veggies to mix in with the eggs, original plain oatmeal (for our toddler) and milk. Some things that I consider basics.

For lunch I like to keep things on hand for sandwiches; lunch meat, cheese, peanut butter and jelly (for the little one). Usually what happens though is we end up with leftovers from dinner so I don’t have to pick up too many extras for our lunches.

Now with dinner I like to mix things up a bit to make them a little more interesting and flavorful. I can’t say that I’m the most creative person when it comes to cooking healthy meals for dinner. I grew up eating a diet of meat, rice and vegetables. So I don’t always know exactly what I want to prepare each week.

What I do though is pull out my collection of recipes from magazines and cookbooks to get some ideas. Yes I use them every week and if you choose the right ones I have found many gear towards cooking healthy meals.

Personally I like to choose any where from three to five meals that I want to prepare. After I know what they are I write down the ingredients that I don’t have on hand and add them to the list. Having a list to follow keeps me from forgetting what it is I need to buy and prevents me from grabbing a bunch of things that we don’t need.

We still choose eat out once a week because we like to have that break from the kitchen and it is also a treat to eat something that I normally would not prepare at home. We also enjoy entertaining or dining with our friends and family on the weekends. This doesn’t stop me from cooking the healthy meals I’ve planned; I just share them.