It’s here! I have a new Diet Menu Plan for you. This week-long healthy menu is built around the ease of heating up a frozen entree for dinner each evening. A little while ago I shared recommendations for frozen meals when you either need or want to eat quickly. (Best Low Calorie Frozen Entrees) For this menu I have a different set of frozen and reasonably healthy meals for you to try. The menus will work whether you are on a 1200, 1300, 1400, or 1500 calorie diet.
I’m not an advocate of eating commercially frozen meals often. You can do a lot better by cooking for yourself. However, if you are pressed for time or just not into cooking, I have a weeks worth of meals that could be just what you’ve been looking for. Another plus for choosing pre-packaged frozen meals is the ease of calculating your total calorie intake. Just keep in mind that the calorie count on the package may not quite as accurate as you might like.
Instead of including a different brand of frozen entree each day, I decided to make all of the selections Lean Cuisine. I’m hoping this might make it easier. These packaged meals seem to be more readily available than other brands no matter where you might live in the United States (my apologies to everyone living elsewhere).
The diet menu plan is designed for 1200 calories. To modify today’s sample menu for a 1300, 1400, or 1500 calorie diet, look for my comments that follow.
1200 Calorie Diet Menu Plan (Day 1)
Honey Oat Waffles (160 calories, Kashi)
1⁄2 cup Orange Juice (55 calories)
Yogurt Peanut Butter Spread
(For the spread: Simply mix 2 oz. of fat free plain yogurt and 1/2 tbsp. of peanut butter. This is an easy and delicious way to add a little more calcium and protein to your diet. And it eliminates the less healthy butter/margarine and/or syrup. Might save you some calories also!)
1 String Cheese Snack (80 calories, Sargento)
Whole Wheat Sandwich with Turkey and Pear
(Make a sandwich with Arnold Whole Wheat Sandwich Thins. Add 6 oz. of shaved turkey, 1/2 ripe pear sliced, and 2 tsp. of spicy brown mustard. Add cheese for a little extra flavor and calcium.)
1/8 cup (2 Tbsp.) Reduced Fat Shredded Cheese (38 calories, Sargento)
1 Lowfat Yogurt (130 calories, your choice of flavor Stonyfield Farm)
Water, unsweetened tea, or coffee
1 medium apple
1 Chicken Mediterranean meal (240 calories, Lean Cuisine – Spa Cuisine Classics)
1/2 cup frozen peas, boiled and drained w/o salt
1/2 cup lite ice cream (100 calories, Blue Bunny)
Water, unsweetened tea, or coffee
(Always remember to get plenty of water throughout the day. Read Water, Weight, and Women to learn more about your water needs.)
Total Calories = 1227
Total Fiber = 26.8 g
Fat = 19%
Carbs = 60%
Protein = 22%
(U.S. Dietary Guidelines Recommended percentages: Fat 20-35%, Carbohydrates 45-65%, Protein 10-35%)
Calcium = 1004 mg (Women between 19 and 50 years of age need approximately 1,000 mg a day, 51+ need 1,200 + mg a day)
Iron = 7.4 mg (Women 19 to 50 years who are pre-menopausal need 18 mg of iron, 51+ need 8 mg)
1300, 1400, or 1500 Calorie Diet Meal Plan
This menu has a fairly good balance of nutrients. However, it comes up short on iron for premenopausal women and a little short on calcium for postmenopausal women. If you need more iron, you could choose to add a cup of enriched soy milk (with iron) for an additional 7-8 mg of iron and 100-120 calories or take a supplement. If, on the other hand, you need more calcium you may want to supplement this menu with another serving of a low fat milk product or take a calcium supplement (with vitamin D).
Otherwise, for women of all ages, simply add an additional serving or two of one of the menu items or other food of your choice to bring the total calories up to the level you need. (I encourage you to read my article on how to determine the minimum SAFE caloric intake for you: 1200 Calorie Diet: How to Get Started!)
I’m pleased with the ease of preparation for this reasonably healthy Diet Menu Plan. Check back often for the remaining 6 days of the menu.
Till next time watch those calories and eat healthy food!
P.S. While you’re here you might want to check out my articles page for lots of tips on how to succeed in losing weight with a healthy low calorie diet! Or you might want to see my 1200 calorie diet plan or 1500 calorie diet plan.