A balanced plate is the key to a healthier lifestyle, and it's easier to achieve than you might think. With a colourful combination of non-starchy veggies & fruits, starchy veggies & legumes, and protein, you can ensure your meals provide optimal nutrition. In this blog post, we'll explore the importance of a balanced plate, offer examples of each food category, discuss how a well-rounded diet can support gut health and overall well-being, and provide tips on incorporating the balanced plate into your daily meals.
The Balanced Plate Formula
50% non-starchy veggies & fruits: bell peppers, avocados, cucumbers, leafy greens, berries, and apples.
25% starchy veggies & legumes: sweet potatoes, carrots, beets, peas, chickpeas, beans, lentils, and squash.
25% protein: chicken, fish, beef, pork, and tofu.
Tips for Incorporating the Balanced Plate into Your Meals
Plan your meals: Take a few minutes each week to plan out your meals, ensuring that you include a variety of non-starchy veggies and fruits, starchy veggies, and protein sources.
Prep in advance: Wash, chop, and store veggies and fruits in the refrigerator to make it easier to create balanced meals throughout the week.
Mix and match: Experiment with different combinations of veggies, fruits, and proteins to keep your meals interesting and avoid getting stuck in a food rut.
Portion control: Use a smaller plate to help control portion sizes and ensure that you're getting the right balance of nutrients in each meal.
Embrace leftovers: Cook extra portions of starchy veggies and protein sources, and store them in the refrigerator or freezer for quick, balanced meals on busy days.
Add color to your plate: Aim to include a variety of colourful veggies and fruits in your meals to ensure you're getting a wide range of nutrients.
The Importance of a Balanced Plate
A balanced plate offers several significant benefits for your health:
Variety of nutrients: By incorporating a mix of veggies, fruits, and protein sources, you ensure your body receives essential vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that support your immune system and overall health.
Fiber boost: Non-starchy veggies and fruits are packed with fiber, which aids in digestion, keeps you full, and helps regulate blood sugar levels.
Sustained energy: Protein provides long-lasting energy, supports muscle repair and growth, while complex carbs from starchy veggies help maintain stable energy levels throughout the day.
A Balanced Diet and Gut Health
A balanced diet plays a crucial role in maintaining a healthy gut. By consuming a variety of nutrient-dense foods, you can support your gut health and promote a thriving digestive system. A healthy gut contributes to improved digestion, better nutrient absorption, and a stronger immune system.
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