Meal Plan for Trading up your Fats
Dietary fat is essential to our health. Fats play a number of important roles in the body, from protecting organs, to facilitating the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins (vitamins A, D, E, and K), to carrying out chemical reactions related to growth, immune function, reproduction, and metabolism.
The “bad” fats are associated with poor health and include trans fats, partially hydrogenated oils, saturated fats, and cholesterol. The “good” fats, shown to be good for health because they can help lower cholesterol and help maintain cardiovascular health, are monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats (which include the essential fatty acids).
Aim to include good fats into your diet – think olives and olive oil, canola oil, avocados, peanuts and peanut oil, nuts (such as almonds and walnuts) and nut oils, seeds and seed oils, nut and seed butter (when they are made from 100% nuts or seeds, i.e. no added oils or sugars) and fatty fish (such as wild salmon and trout). Nuts and seeds are easy snacks on their own, or they can be added to salads or cooked grains. Try smearing 100% nut butter on whole grain toast or fresh fruit. Add avocado to sandwiches, salads, quesadillas, and tacos. You can also make your own salad dressing by combining one part vinegar (whichever kind you prefer) to two parts high quality olive oil.
- Incorporate plenty of the essential fatty acids, especially DHA (an Omega 3 fatty acid found predominantly in fatty fish), to support the brain development of your baby. Pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers should eat 8 to 12 ounces of a variety of lower mercury fish each week such as wild salmon, and sardines.
- Option 1: Oatmeal with dried or fresh fruit and nuts sprinkled with ground flaxseed
- Option 2: Whole grain cereal with banana, low-fat milk or milk alternative, and ground flaxseed
- Option 3: Whole grain toast with nut butter and sliced strawberries
- Option 4: Scrambled eggs with salsa and avocado on a corn tortilla
- Option 5: Fried egg with avocado and tomatoes. Orange slices on the side
- Option 1: Canned salmon over a bed of sautéed spinach with side of mixed vegetables and whole grain crackers
- Option 2: Tuna* with avocado, arugula, and tomato on a whole grain bun
- Option 3: Roasted turkey breast slices** with lettuce, cucumbers, avocado and tomato, with dijon mustard on whole grain bread served with side of fruit salad
- Option 4: Dark leafy green salad with roasted veggies, roasted chicken, avocado, and olive oil and vinegar
- Option 5: Kale, avocado, and quinoa salad tossed with walnuts, olive oil, lemon juice, and dijon mustard, and salt and pepper
- Option 1: Chicken, turkey, or beef with sweet potato and side salad with olive oil and vinegar
- Option 2: Stir Fry pork tenderloin with brown rice and mixed veggies including broccoli, red peppers, and cauliflower cooked with sesame oil, soy sauce, and ginger. Top with sliced almonds and a drizzle of hoisin sauce to taste
- Option 3: Baked salmon with brown rice and asparagus
- Option 4: Grilled chicken fajitas with sautéed onions and peppers on a whole grain tortilla, topped with guacamole
- Option 5: Chicken or beef with vegetables and tomato sauce on whole grain pasta drizzled with olive oil
- Option 1: Walnuts and an apple
- Option 2: Peanut (or other nut) butter smoothie: coconut water, peanut butter, and frozen banana
- Option 3: Raw vegetables and hummus
- Option 4: Guacamole (mash avocado with lime juice) with corn chips
- Option 5: Whole grain toast with nut butter and 100% fruit spread
*Pregnant women should eat no more than 6 ounces of high mercury fish per week
**If pregnant and using deli turkey, be sure to heat in pan or microwave until steaming
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