If you’re thinking this is way too hard (as was my reaction), don’t fret! Stress will worsen your digestion. Instead, follow my simplified approach:
How do I plan a meal?
For each meal, choose one main ingredient.
Either a protein or a starch — this can include starchy veggies like sweet potatoes; squash; grains like oats, quinoa, brown rice, beans, and lentils; or animal protein, including dairy — and combine this with as many nonstarchy veggies as you’d like.
Then add small amounts of neutral items like lemon/lime, cold-pressed virgin oils, and nondairy milks.
And if you want to add any other ingredient apart from the veggies and neutral foods, keep it to less than 10 percent of your meal. (This little exception can keep you sane!)
Essentially, keep your meals simple.
What about fruit?
Eat alone and in between meals (adding 1 tablespoon of nut butter is okay), 30 minutes before a meal, or blended in a green juice/smoothie.
What are considered nonstarchy veggies?
ALL vegetables except potatoes, butternut and acorn squashes, artichokes, chestnuts, peas, and corn.
Worried you’ll be hungry without the carbs (if you’re having protein) or without added protein (if you’re having starch)? Then add more fiber-rich veggies!
And if doing starch, go for a high-protein, gluten-free grain (like quinoa and brown rice) and use protein-rich veggies such as broccoli and kale.
Filling up on veggies and adding healthy fats (cold-pressed virgin oils) can really do the trick to keep you satiated, your metabolism on high gear, and your digestion at its best.
Try applying this basic food-pairing principle and you will quickly see a huge difference with your bloated belly, afternoon slump, and overall weight-loss efforts.