5 Steps to a Perfect Plate

By Bridgitte Carroll, MS, RDN

If you follow my 5 steps to a perfect plate, your meal will keep you energized and focused throughout the day, boost your metabolism and support hundreds of processes in the body. The portion of macronutrients – protein, fat and carbohydrates – are very important, however, going an extra step will propel you to optimal health. Below are my 5 must- haves…

  1. Protein. This powerhouse macro-nutrient is the building block of each cell in our body – no wonder it’s important! Opt for wild caught, oily fish, pastured poultry, grass fed beef, organic soy, seeds, legumes and raw dairy. You can also check out our large protein powder section here at Johnson’s.
  2. Fat. Many people could benefit from more of the RIGHT types of fat. Choose olive oil for salads, grass-fed ghee for sautéing, and avocado or coconut oil for high heat cooking. Eliminate highly processed vegetable and hydrogenated oils.
  3. Carbs. These guys get a bad rep but they are our energy source. Carbohydrates include grains, breads, vegetables and fruit.  It is easy to over dose, though! Aim for double the amount of vegetables per starchy carbs (rice, bread, potatoes). Especially at restaurants or take out, ask for ½ the amount of carb such as rice. and opt for whole foods (sweet potatoes, quinoa, berries) versus processed (bread or crackers).
  4. Color. You guessed it, my favorite, the veggies. These are heavy hitters and a MUST to balance a meal. They add a good amount of fiber; very important with regulating blood sugar. An easy way to check out if you’re getting enough “color” is to look at your grocery cart. Are all of your vegetables green? Could you add carrots, tomatoes, purple potatoes?
  5. Ferment. I’m sure you’ve heard that the gut is the center of health so we must support it regularly with good bacteria. Some examples of fermented foods that contain probiotics include kimchi, sauerkraut, probiotic-rich yogurt, and tempeh.

If you’d like individual recommendations or help implementing this in your daily life, consider an individualized consult at Johnson Compounding and Wellness.

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