Having Smart Diet Menus can be
what makes or breaks a diet.

Following diet menus make it much simpler to stay on track with your diet. When you're too busy to think about what you're doing, it's easy to grab the wrong food, kicking your diet to the curb at the same time before you know what's hit you.

While diet plans are great for simplifying the process of following a diet or a healthy eating plan, they're useless if you hate what you're eating. Therefore, I feel that the best way to follow diet menus is to create them yourself using a template, which I provide on this webpage.

Constructing Your Personal Diet Menus

I'll tell you how you can construct your own diet menus for free right here. If you would like to keep track of those meals with a free online program, visit this page:

fitday.com

1. When constructing your diet menus, first and foremost you need to keep the general diet recommendations in mind.

2. Now, it is time to choose your sources of protein, carbs, and fats that will make up your meals and snacks:

--80% of the time choose "healthy" foods from these lists.
--20% of the time, choose foods with similar calorie contents but that are not quite so "healthy" (like a slice of pizza or a hamburger).
--Keep in mind, generally you want to choose about 25% of your meal or snack calories from a protein source, 25% from a fats source, and 50% from a carbs source (fruits and veggies count as carbs). If you're not familiar with calorie counts of many founds, click on the link for free calorie count tables, or simply try to have 35% of the space on your plate occupied by protein sources, 65% by carb/veggie sources, and small amounts of fats either within these choices or added to the meal.

3. Make your selections for your diet menu! Choose 80% of your foods from the following lists for best results:

Healthiest sources of protein:
–Turkey (white meat; no skin)
–Chicken (white meat; no skin)
–Seafood (avoid added butter or fried seafood)
–Lean Beef (trim the fat)
Lean roast beef
Top Round steak
Top Sirloin steak
95% lean ground beef
Top Loin (strip or New York) steak
–Low-fat Dairy
Cheese; reduced fat, mozzarella, feta
Milk; skim or 1%
Yogurt; fat-free or low fat
-Eggs; 3 whites to 1 yolk, or 1-2
whole eggs per day –Whey/Egg/Soy/Caesin Protein Powder, any flavor

Click here for more information on protein powders.

Healthiest sources of complex or fibrous carbs:

–“Old Fashioned” oatmeal
–Other wholegrain cereals
–High-fiber breakfast cereals
including bran and Kashi
–Sweet Potato/Yam
–Whole-grain breads
–Peas, beans, and lentils
–Colorful vegetables such as broccoli, carrots, and tomatoes
–Fruits, especially citrus fruits (oranges, grapefruit) and berries

Best sources of the Essential Fatty Acids typically deficient in the U.S. diet:

–Flaxseed and flax oil
–Canola oil
–Walnuts
–Fish (especially cold-water fish) or fish oil capsules
Anchovy
Chinook salmon
Herring
Mackerel
Albacore tuna
Pacific halibut

If you're not eating at least 1 serving of the foods listed above daily, I strongly recommend that you take 3-6 fish oil capsules every day.

Other good sources of heart-healthy fats:

–Most nuts, especially almonds and sunflower seeds
–Peanut Butter, preferably with no added sugar
–Olive oil
–Sunflower oil
–Sesame oil

Some Breakfast ideas:

–Higher protein bars such as:
Optimum Protein Diet Bars
Labrada Lean Body Bars
Any bar with at least 20 grams of protein and less than 10 grams of fat
–Hard-boiled egg or omelet w/ low-fat cheese and veggies
–High-fiber cereal with low-fat milk
–Yogurt or cottage cheese with fruit or cereal
–Fruit and string cheese
–Protein pancakes (use 1 scoop vanilla-flavored Optimum 100% Whey Protein Powder , 1 egg, and 3 egg whites, plus cinnamon if desired. Beat and cook like regular pancakes)
–Protein shake smoothie (use 1 scoop of Optimum 100% Whey Protein Powder , 1 cup of milk, ice and/or a handful of fruit)

Good post-weight training choices:

–Pasta salad w/ small amount of dressing (low-fat dressing is better here) and chicken
–Rice or pasta and chicken
–Pizza: go light on the cheese and oil
–Turkey, ham, or roast beef sandwich, sub, or wrap (avoid full-fat cheese and mayonnaise)
–Oatmeal prepared w/ low-fat milk
–Breakfast cereal w/ low-fat milk
–Lean meat, vegetables, and a potato or roll
ISS Research Pro42 Meal Replacement Bars
–Power bar, regular Pria bar (not the low-carb version), Cliff Bar, or Luna Bar if you’re on the run, followed by a high-protein meal 2 hours later (these bars are a bit low in protein for our purposes)
–Protein shake plus a high-carb snack such as a small bagel
–Low-fat ice cream or frozen yogurt, plus a protein-containing snack

4. I recommend having a game plan for the way you'll structure your diet menus, and then fill in food choices from foods you like and ones that offer a variety of nutrients.

For example, you might decide after reviewing the general diet menu guidelines page that you should be able to reach your goals having, for instance, about 30 grams (or four ounces) of lean protein, 50 grams of carbs (1-4 cups depending on whether you're choosing bread/pasta or green vegetables), and 10 grams or (2/3 tablespoon) of fats per meal, eating four meals per day.

Whatever your personal "template" for your diet menus may be, keep it in mind as you choose your meals and snacks.

Also, for the best chances of success and the fastest results, be sure to log what you're eating. That way, you can troubleshoot what ISN'T working, and remember what IS working for you so you'll know in the future! Everyone is different, which means that everyone will follow his or her own unique diet plan. If you're having trouble or you're not sure what your diet plan should look like,

If you'd like me to review your diet plan, send me an email. I might choose you to be a "guinea pig"--in which case I'll ask you to follow a personalized diet plan constructed for you free of charge, in exchange for your data to use in my own research or possibly marketing materials. All interested parties can contact me to learn how to apply for this program.

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