ideas to help you eat well - achieving your diet.
This is a very simple guide, just
to give you an idea of what you can do simply.
A bowl of whole grain cereal or untoasted muesli with low fat or soy
Wholegrain toast with jam or marmalade.
Whole fruits such as grapefruit.
Try to avoid fruit juices since this removes much of the really
important fibre. Remember that fruit juices, apart from being bad for your teeth
because of their high acid and sugar levels, are also related to
obesity in children if consumed in amounts greater than 500mL
per day (Sanigorski 07).
Many breakfast cereals are
highly processed, have high amounts of sugar and salt, and are
lacking in fibre. You may as well eat cookies or cake for breakfast.
Make yourself some sandwiches or rolls of the wholegrain type.
Fillings are fairly easy. The following are some examples.
Sandwiches don't have to have meat on them to taste good.
- Baked beans add some ordinary
tomato sauce (ketchup) to increase the taste.
- Peanut butter but add any type
of lettuce or other crunchy vegetable, it really adds to the
interest. Sliced celery is an example.
- Use left over vegetable dishes
as a filling, for example ratatouille or homemade pasta sauce
are fantastic sandwich fillings. Most of these foods will last
for weeks in the fridge (if you keep your fingers and licked
spoons out of them!)
- Pasta or rice can be used as
fillings. Cooked rice will keep in the fridge for a long time.
Before you put the rice on your sandwich just boil it briefly in
water, it makes it lovely and fluffy. As a flavour enhancer, use
an interesting type of chutney, such as green tomato relish.
- Tinned tuna that come with
various vegetables such as tomato, onion go well with sliced
fresh tomato and lettuce.
- Hummus can be used instead of
margarine, then add some sliced tomato or other cooked vegetable
- There are many dips available
that can be used on sandwiches but be careful. Choose the low
fat ones and avoid the ones that have saturated fat and/or lots
of salt. Greek tzatziki makes interesting sandwiches with
tomato, cucumber, and lettuce.
Be adventurous, most things can be
put on sandwiches and rolls. Experiment, surprise yourself. Again
save yourself heaps.
The main meal.
There are any number of easy short cuts to making easy, really tasty
main meals. You don't need complicated recipes, forage in the
supermarket. It will surprise you what you can come
up with. Here are some examples:
- Really easy vegetarian. Most
supermarkets have a fair range of pre-prepared sauces available,
particularly in Asian, Indian and other ethic cuisines, usually
in the stir fry mode. Many of them require that you add
various meat types, for example lamb to curry, pork or chicken
to sweet-and-sour sauce, beef to black bean sauce. Just leave
out the meat and add other vegetables. Pre-cooking the
vegetables before adding them to your sauce gives a better
result, particularly if one type takes a longer time that
others. One of the best and most nutritious to add is steamed
shredded cabbage, either usual cabbage or any type of SE Asian
or Chinese cabbage. It is a great filler, it is really cheap and
is very acceptable to even the most ardent cabbage haters.
If you are
pressed for time, you can steam your vegetables days in advance,
and again they will keep very well in the fridge. You can have
your delicious hot meal on the table within five minutes. You
can also pre-prepare rice in the same
way, just reheat by boiling it briefly and draining. If you need
to thicken the sauce of a vegetable dish, add finely diced
cooked potato. Never use coconut milk or cream which is the
common thickener in Indian cuisine as this is loaded with
- Pasta sauce.
You can make
your own pasta sauce in a few minutes, it freezes well and it is
really good for you. Finely chop up an onion and cook in a
little oil until soft, adding garlic to taste. Add a can of
chopped tomatoes (or whole tomatoes and cut them up in the
saucepan with kitchen scissors), add a teaspoon of sugar, a
little salt and some Italian herbs. Done! To add interest all
some sliced olives of any type. You can scale this up and keep
it for weeks in the fridge or months in the freezer. The uses of
pasta sauce are as follows.
- Mexican eggs. Add the sauce to a
fry pan, bring to simmer, then make a hollow and break an egg
into it. Cook until you reach your level of preference, best
with a lid and serve with crusty bread, best toasted on one
- Spaghetti or noodles. Cook your
pasta or any type of noodle for that matter, but at the end mix
through some type of chutney or relish while the cook top is
still hot. Then serve on a bed of pasta sauce. Use your
Vegetarian dishes need
not be lacking in flavour and need not take a lot of time to prepare. They are good
for you and good for the world.
[Back to What to eat main page]
(Sanigorski 07) Sanigorski AM,
Bell AC, Swinburn BA. Association of key foods
and beverages with obesity in Australian schoolchildren. Public
Health Nutrition 2007; 10:152-157