Weight Loss Wednesday: Battling Burnout

OMG, not another meatball!!!

OMG, not another meatball!!!

Hello. It’s your friendly, neighborhood dietitian, and I am here to talk to you this week about habit. When it comes to food, we tend to be creatures of habit. Given the chance, I would say that most of us fall into this category to some extent. Why? Habits tend to endure for many reasons. First, habits are easy. Once the pattern of actions that make up the habit are stored in our brain, they also become easy, and require very little thought to execute. They can also make us feel comforted, by adding the security of routine to our lives. This line of thinking can also be applied to food and food choices. I, myself, am habit-based in my cooking and from week to week, if you open my freezer and stare at my frozen goods, you will likely see chili, shepherd’s pie and meatballs with red sauce on repeat. I like all of these dishes, and I am efficient and good at making them.  Putting them together has become a habit, and therefore should bring comfort. However, when it comes to food, what brings comfort in the short-term can also mean monotony in the long-term. Loosely translated, if I have to eat one more spoonful of Shepherd’s Pie, I’ll scream.

So, this week, I bring you a selection of edible spring: recipes full of produce and colors to shake things up a bit. They’re still clean, they’re still tasty, but you will find nary a meatball nor a pie in this post. Why am I writing this? Simply stated, because burnout can be real (I am there now, in fact), and can threaten to undo all the good work you’ve been doing at the gym and in the kitchen because you aren’t enjoying your old stand-by recipes anymore (e.g I may or may not be staring at my roommate’s pint of Häagen Dasz and drooling because it happens to be next to the meatballs I have prepped for tomorrow).  We can’t let burnout win. Don’t do it! As your dietary commander-in-chief, it is my job to step up and say, ‘Not on my watch.’  Battling burnout in your daily intake can be as easy as shaking things up a bit, culinary-wise. So here are a few new recipes for you to try out and stuff in your face.  Stay the course, lions, summer is coming.


1.  Salmon and Asparagus in Foil - Delicious, classy, chock full of omega-3-fatty acids for anti-inflammatory action and easy to clean up? Yes please! Note, the lemon here provides a protective affect to the B vitamins in the fish, making them easier for your body to get to.




2. Quinoa and Veggie Fried Rice-

 Quinoa (actually a seed, not a grain) is the superfood of the Incas and is packed with over 8g protein per cup, as well as a ton of fiber. In addition, this dish is packed with veggie goodness, including good for you nutrients such as vitamin A, C and lycopene - an antioxidant.


3. Strawberry and Spinach Salad


Strawberries and Spinach? So wrong and yet so right! Vitamin C, Iron, and fiber,  and berries Ohh my!  This delicious salad is just as pretty as it is healthy, and is guaranteed to wakeup your tastebuds.