Eat This NOT That! Part 2

by Melissa Koerner | October 10th, 2012 | Nutrition

This is the second installment of a two part series on optimal food choices throughout the day. Last time, Melissa covered morning nutrition tips.

P.M. Meals and Snacks

1:30 p.m. Health Magazine Meal:

One whole wheat pita filed with 1 tbsp hummus, 1 mushroom burger, 1 ounce part-skim mozzarella cheese and lettuce, ½ cup grapes, ½ cup steamed veggies with 2 tsp olive oil

Melissa’s Tips: 


Pita bread is touted as healthy form of bread, but like many other breads it is made with grains that are highly processed.  With that said, I would omit the pita bread, and eat the burger by itself with the veggies and fruit.

Skim Mozzarella

It’s interesting that all dairy products in the meal plan are low-fat or nonfat.  If you’re going to eat cheese, I suggest that you eat organic cheese made from whole milk, not skim (nonfat) milk.

If you’re scared to switch to whole dairy products, don’t be!  I used to be the queen of low-fat foods—I literally ate low-fat everything, but I found that these foods actually made me gain weight, not to mention gave me stomach issues!  When I switched to whole, raw, organic dairy products, I actually slimmed down. I personally don’t eat cheese, but I consume yogurt and raw milk on occasion, and I feel energized and satiated when I eat them!

4 p.m. Health Magazine Snack:

One banana and 1 ounce almonds

Melissa’s Tips:

This is the only part of the meal plan that gets and A+ from me!  A banana and almonds are a great snack—it’s the perfect mix of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats to keep you feeling energized and satiated.  My only suggestions would be to buy organic when whenever possible, and choose raw nuts over the roasted and flavored ones.

7 p.m. Health Magazine Meal:

Mixed green salad with ½ avocado and 3 ounces tofu, ½ cup whole-wheat pasta with ¼ cup marinara sauce

Melissa’s Tips:

Whole Wheat Pasta

Wheat pasta is highly processed, which means it converts to sugar very quickly and impacts blood sugar levels.  Therefore, pasta should be eaten occasionally.  That is, of course, if you can tolerate gluten.

As I mentioned above, wheat products contain the protein gluten, and many people are developing an array of health issues because they can’t tolerate it.  Some tasty and healthy, gluten-free alternatives to wheat pasta are brown rice pasta or quinoa pasta.  These two grains do not contain gluten, and they are easier to digest.  There are also organic varieties available.  A good rule of thumb when buying pasta is to look to see that it contains only one ingredient—the grain used to make the pasta and nothing else!


Tofu is made from soy, and soy is not the healthy food it’s made out to be.  First, about 90% of soy products are genetically modified, so unless it says “non-GMO” you don’t know if it has been or not.  Second, soy contains phytoestrogens called isoflavones, which mimic and sometimes block estrogen; this may contribute to irregular menstrual cycles, infertility, and breast cancer.  Third, soy contains enzyme inhibitors and mineral blockers, which block enzymes needed for protein digestion and prevent the absorption od minerals (i.e. calcium, magnesium, iron and zinc). So, eating too much soy could contribute to protein and mineral deficiencies.

If you don’t like to eat meat, there are other sources of protein that you can put on your salad like hard or soft boiled eggs, avocado, nuts, seeds, or cottage cheese.  I often put scallops or shrimp from my dinner leftovers on my lunch salad the next day.

Well, there you have it!  Those are the changes I would personally make with this meal plan.

By the way, did you notice that 4 of the 6 meals in this meal plan contain processed grains?  That’s a lot of processed foods for one day!  I typically recommend to my clients that they aim to eat “clean” for 90% of their meals.  For example, if you’re eating 6 meals a day, times 7 days per week, that’s 42 meals each week.  That leaves you about 6 meals/snacks each week for allocate for your 10%.  With the “health” magazine meal plan, you’d be eating 28 meals with processed foods each week!

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