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Easy to prepare and cook, healthy meals.

(14 Posts)

Hi. I am morbidly obese, depressed and struggling.

I know I need to eat more healthily, but I struggle with this due to the depression (and the lack of motivation, insomnia and exhaustion it has given me). I find it hard to think of meals that are easy to prepare (necessary because I have so little motivation and energy) but are healthy too.

So please can you give me your suggestions of healthy meals/recipes? I am not following a particular diet - low fat/low carb/low sugar etc - I think I do best by cutting down a bit on all of these things, and increasing the amount of fruit and vegetables I eat.

I would be very grateful for any suggestions - lunches or main meals.

Thank you so much.

Revealall Sun 23-Oct-16 17:42:10

Good on you for doing something about it. I am getting evangelical about the blood sugar diet but it is worth a read as you lose loads in a very short time.
The problem I found with all recipes is that you end up thinking of food all the bloody time...you look at lovely pictures of the recipe and it's in your head reminding you of food. Then you've got to buy the ingredients which means more looking at food. Whilst you cook, you're tasting as you go along and then you have to think about eating or keep the leftovers ( which you probably snack on). Minefield.

What I found worked is to not think about food at all until 12 and 6 - mealtimes. Then I keep it dead simple and a bit repetitive. it's only meat and vegetables and I decide what herbs and spices to add depending on how I'm feeling then. If I want carbs I open a tin of lentils or chickpeas to add to the meat or veg.

Good no thought lunches are a bit of hummus and lots of chopped cucumber and pepper, chicken and bacon on lettuce with a sprinkling of Parmesan cheese or a ham, chopped veg and some nuts.

That is good advice, Revealall. I do plan the meals for the week, so that we don't end up trekking to the shops every day for this or that that has been forgotten. Perversely, I think that planning meals means I can forget about them more during the week.

What I want to do is to assemble a list of meals, divided into very healthy, OK, and indulgent, so that, when I plan the week's meals, I don't end up racking my brain, and ending up with the same few meals - and I can make sure most of the meals are from the healthy list, with one or two from the OK/indulgent lists - if that makes sense.

Revealall Sun 23-Oct-16 18:53:14

When you say "we" who else are you cooking for?
I think think if you are morbidly obese you may have to think about planning two meals one for you and one for everyone else. Healthy eating is great but it won't be enough to shift weight quickly and you'll be back to eating crisps and chocolate ( or whatever your poison is) once you get bored.

I would seriously think about going very low calorie. You don't have to do it for long .Small meals of meat and vegtables ( doesn't need to be low fat) and those lunches I put in my last post. You will be so proud this time next Sunday if you have lost 4 or 5lbs..you could really do it this week. It is an amazing feeling.

If you are serious about losing weight there is no indulgent food planning. Food is not your friend.

Anyway good luck with it ( sorry sounding a bit preachy) .You could definitely lose weight next week just by not snacking and cutting out one meal or by doing 5:2. You could report back next Sunday?

QuiteLikely5 Sun 23-Oct-16 18:59:34

Steak, mushrooms, peppercorn sauce and a few boiled potatoes.

Poached egg X 2, 2sausages and mushroom/tomatoes

Hairy bikers Spanish chicken

Any meat with two veg and gravy

Sugar maybe what is keeping you awake? I notice if I drink cordial through the night I'm wide awake for the next 30/40 mins. Maybe you have too much sugar cursing through you.

Like you said it's little steps. Cut out full fat drinks for diet versions, don't buy the chocolate but do reward yourself on occasion.

You can do it

Showgirl109 Sun 23-Oct-16 19:10:46

If your morbidly obese you will lose weight eating 3 healthy meals a day no snacking. I think home cooked food with 2 thirds of your plate veggies will go a long way to help. I try to cram as many in to meals as possible.

These are some I do
Chicken curry
- 1 small breast per person
- onions, celery and peppers
- 1 tin of tomatoes
- spoon of curry paste
- 0% fat natural yog
Serve with brown rice (small ish portion)

Grilled tuna steak and stir fry veg

Salmon risotto with broccoli, asparagus, beans and green peppers. (Mostly veg)

3 bean chilly with baked sweet potato

Tacos using a big lettuce instead of wraps

Baked salmon with cherry tomatoes, asparagus and broccoli.

I also try to substitute things out like make a shepherds pie but with butternut squash and sweet potato mash on top, parsnip and carrot "fries" cauliflower mash.

Thank you both. Revealall - I am usually cooking for just dh and me, but in the university vacations, ds2 and ds3 are at home too.

I know it sounds a bit feeble, but I want to ease into a healthier lifestyle - depression and the lack of motivation that go with it makes even the thought of big changes exhausting and too much to cope with.

I have been talking to dh, and we are going to look at getting some sort of exercise equipment for the house, so I can use it every day. And he is going to help me put together a list of meals.

I do like vegetables and salad, which is one good thing.

Lalsy Sun 23-Oct-16 20:13:46

OP, you don't sound feeble, and small changes may be more sustainable. Could you fit in some walking - the fresh air and exercise might lift your mood and help you sleep better? I agree about three meals (and see the No S diet thread maybe?). You can do it and if you have a lot to lose it may come off quickly at first, which will encourage you.

Cornishclio Sun 23-Oct-16 20:49:49

I am trying to lose around 1-2 stone at the moment and what always works for me is 3 meals, 3 snacks. Low fat and low sugar.

I rotate meals so 1 red meat, chilli con carne, bolognese, sweet and sour pork, cottage pie or steak, 1 white meat - roast chicken, turkey, risotto, chicken curry, 1 fish - salmon, cod, fish pie, paella and 1 vegetarian, spicy bean burger, veg sausages, mushroom omelette or veg stir fry.

Snacks are fruit, yogurts, naked bars, rice cake or nuts.

I lose around 2lb a week on that diet but as soon as I go back to eating biscuits and cakes it piles back on again sadly. I just need to keep off them.

Showgirl109 Sun 23-Oct-16 20:52:56

Just start with small changes, they are easier to stick with and you can build on your progress.

Giving up snacking aside from fruit I think is one of the best things to implement. In between meals just have a cup of tea or a piece of fruit of the urge takes you. You also don't have long to wait until your next meal, making these healthy but not fun free is important. You can still eat lots of the things you like! It takes 30 days for something to become a habit, but in the same way that alcoholics do I say I'm not going to eat between meals today.

I also second walking, little and often it all builds up.

You CAN do this!

Hrafnkel Mon 24-Oct-16 13:12:39

I made a ny resolution last year to eat leafy greens everyday. So I'd get rid of half my pasta in a spag Bol and replace with broccoli.

Or a chicken and cashew stir fry with loads of veg and only a couple of spoonfuls of rice. Big portions but mostly veg/protein.

Veg chilli with cheese on top, no rice.

4-egg omelette with spinach and cashew nuts on top. V filling but only about 500 cals as so much protein.

LEIGH350 Sun 06-Nov-16 12:34:41

OP I am bigger than you. I used to be in the same hopeless position but lately I have "cracked" it.

The answer is, count calories. Yeah, that oldfashioned, outdated, outmoded and thoroughly debunked thing!

If you are morbidly obese you can have about 1800 a day, that is what I have, and you log them online at MFP.

1800 is achievable if you choose the right foods.

If you like to eat 3 x a day, make that 500 calories per meal and that leaves 300 for cheats, drinks and snacks. No food is off the menu. Just log it.

500 buys you a BIG salad, with some protein on top like chicken breast, ham, boiled eggs, tuna etc. You just have to be really careful about the dressing. Lemon juice is OK, or balsamic, though to be honest a tablespoon of salad cream is only about 15 calories.

With 500 you can even have a ready-meal like spagbol. Just a regular one, not a diet one necessarily. I found the best thing to do is to cook a ready meal such as lasagne, spagbol etc and serve half of it on a bed of broccoli or sprouts, and that does two meals, each one about 400 calories.

If you want to go crazy and have, say, fish and chips that is 1500 calories so you can have just a cup a soup for your other two meals = 1800.

I think we have overcomplicated dieting. I have lost 55lb counting calories. I never feel hungry or deprived. In fact, it's fun working out new things you can spend that 1800 calories on!

LEIGH350 Sun 06-Nov-16 12:36:39

I honestly would not bother with exercise equipment in the house! Millions of people buy this stuff and it all ends up at boot fairs. Waste of money!

Just got for a walk. Totally free of charge! Swimming is also good. I bought some nylon barbells and lift weights whilst watching TV.

OhTheRoses Sun 06-Nov-16 12:42:51

LEIGH what good advice. SDT you say you shop weekly for efficiency but could you go out daily for one thing - must the money for that in your pocket. Could that give you a walk of a mile a day? It would be uplifting as well as exercise.

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