Monday to Sunday meal plan: Foods you should eat through the week to stay healthy
Health is an ongoing journey. It is not a single destination. It requires a dynamic flow where you continue to tweak your diet and protocols based on what is happening to you in terms of stress, hormones, digestion, circulation, overall metabolism, mood, and detoxification.
What might work for you perfectly at one point in time may require a completely different approach at another time. This is why I am cautious about the concept of the ideal diet.
What if you could eat with different intentions for each day of your week?
Bringing intention to your dietary choices helps your body to use food as medicine. Many specific foods come together with other foods and work towards different systems and intentions. If you are keen to improve your overall health, be inspired by ancient wisdom and traditional healing, as well as by the science and research around foods.
Let’s explore eating different meals through each day of the week in a way that you provide different systems within your body with the right resources to be vibrant and healthy!
Monday - adrenal support for improved stress resilience
Many foods have been used traditionally to support the nervous system and the adrenals. Eating a breakfast that is very low in sugar and rich in proteins, healthy fats, and fibre can be a stable foundation for your day by providing you with sustained energy, stable blood sugar, balanced cortisol and a healthy nervous system.
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Including rolled oats that are presoaked with the soaking water discarded is a great start to the week. Combine soaked rolled oats in rich coconut milk with pumpkin seeds, cashew nuts, almonds, and a few raisins. The combination of nuts and seeds, which are full of stress-reducing nutrients, is wonderful! If you had a heavy workout and want additional protein, include some collagen or vegan protein.
Tuesday - support healthy hormones
No matter what comes your way, you will feel more stable in energy and mood when you eat to support your hormones. Some foods can be deeply nurturing and nourishing.
Combine ingredients that include avocado, arugula, tomatoes, grilled sweet potatoes, grilled fish or red kidney beans, tofu if there is no estrogen dominance, sauteed onions, cooked green peas, and cooked millet or quinoa. Make a dressing with olive oil, lemon juice, salt, pepper, and a dash of honey to create a sumptuous lunch full of hormone-balancing foods!
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Wednesday - fire up digestion
Digestion is the key to all health. Keeping one day of the week to include digestive foods is a great way to support overall health! Having one dinner which contains digestive foods and where the digestibility of foods is easier allows your body to relax rather than working constantly on digesting heavier foods.
Soup need not mean a meal that is so light that you wake up in the middle of the night. A soup packed with balance and flavour is easy on digestion while keeping you satiated. In some traditions, cooked carrots are linked to better digestion since they have fibre and improve elimination.
Sauté onions, carrots, cauliflower, and garlic in some coconut oil or ghee. Add a cup of mung and some curry powder. Include water to cover the vegetables and cook. Once it is cooked, blend them into a soup, add some coconut cream and salt and enjoy!
Thursday - better circulation and heart health
With so much focus on heart health, supporting the circulatory system with optimal foods can be beneficial. Most dried beans are linked to lowering the risk for heart disease since they help lower LDL and balance blood sugar. Ayurveda also links them to helping congestion in the lymph system release.
Studies also point towards leafy greens increasing vasodilation and shitake mushrooms being protective against heart disease. Remember to always presoak beans until the water is frothy to release phytates.
Sauté onions, garlic, ginger, green chillies, shredded cabbage, different coloured bell peppers, mushrooms, and spinach in olive oil.
Add cooked white beans or double beans at the very end and combine it with some cooked rice noodles or serve the vegetables on a bed of sweet potato mash for a heart-healthy meal.
Friday - improve metabolism and energy
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Stable metabolism is the key to balanced energy. Ideally, you want your energy to remain optimal right through the day without fluctuations at any vulnerable time.
Power up your metabolism at breakfast with some free-range eggs, pepper, fresh coriander or oregano, grilled tomatoes, and garlic on rye bread or gluten-free millet bread. Tomatoes are rich in vitamin C and lycopene. Herbs are always my star ingredient in any meal. Pepper helps improve the digestion of complex proteins like eggs. Rye bread is a great source of fibre if you can tolerate them.
Saturday - stabilise your mood
When it comes to stable mood, omega-3 can be key. Oily fish are a great source of omega-3 fatty acids. Serving baked or grilled fish with a leafy green salad and some Greek yoghurt can be wonderful, provided you can tolerate dairy. Yoghurt can be wonderful if you are not sensitive to dairy and if you have a clean source.
Yoghurt has been linked to better immune function and brain health. It also helps lower blood pressure. Combine grilled fish with a big salad of leafy greens, cashew nuts, and pomegranate. If you like a plant-based diet, swap the yoghurt with some coconut yoghurt, which is free of preservatives and sugars, and the grilled fish with some chickpea patties instead!
Sunday - help your body with detoxification
End your week by supporting your liver. Include a liver cleansing juice sometime during your day. Your liver is breaking down all the dietary and environmental toxins all week long, and definitely requires some support. Grapefruit is a liver cleansing star. If you have access to them, blend them up with some raw carrots and apples and drink the juice fresh. Do not allow the ingredients to oxidise.
Even if you are healthy, having a weekly roadmap for your dietary choices to support different systems can be interesting, creative and a great way to support your health. No matter your dietary philosophy, be it plant-based or omnivore, you can tweak these to be supportive to all of them.