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7 days, 7 healthy dinners

Experi­mentin­g with your foods is the best way to keep you motiva­ted to shed some weight­



Sticking to a strict diet plan to help you lose weight becomes dull and dreary. Experimenting with your foods is the best way to keep you motivated to shed some weight, especially if you’re a real foodie. According to Harvard Health Publications, consuming 1200-1500 calories a day would help dieters lose weight.

We have you sorted for the whole week. As compiled from Health Magazine, here are seven delicious recipes you can incorporate into your daily meal chart to keep your food game strong and healthy.

Sweet potato and spinach quesadillas

If you’re following a healthy diet plan, you’ll get an instant immune boost from the beta-carotene found in sweet potatoes. This exquisite dish delivers 20 per cent of your daily iron needs and contains more calcium than a glass of milk.

Ingredients: Sweet potatoes, vinegar, sugar, black peppercorn, red onion, salt, black pepper, flour tortillas, spinach, mozzarella and olive oil

Calorie count: 391

Brown rice bowl with turkey

This meal will satiate your rice craving, leaving you feeling energetic and active. With a low sugar count, this dish serves up to one-fourth of your daily requirement of Vitamin B6, which is crucial for a healthy immune system. It’s super lean too, with just 1.2 grams of saturated fat.

Ingredients: Brown rice, salt, chicken broth, turkey breast, olive oil, pepper, soy sauce, spinach, scallions, sesame oil and toasted sesame seeds

Calorie count: 486

Grapefruit and avocado salad with baked salmon

Have a go at this heart-healthy and scrumptious salad containing a trio of foods – fish, veggies and fruits. Adding one grapefruit to your salad will not only help make your salad tastier but also help burn fat cells in your body and stabilise blood sugar. This salad nets you a good amount of Vitamin B, which helps keep your skin, hair and eyes healthy.

Ingredients: Grapefruit, avocado, lemon juice, olive oil, salt, pepper, cooking spray, salmon fillets and walnuts

Calorie count: 360

Burger with mushrooms and red lettuce

Build your own burger and satisfy your taste buds in the healthiest way there is. The lean beef patty in your burger provides more than half the required protein intake and nearly 30 per cent of iron for the day. You’ll feel satisfied, thanks to the protein and seven grams of fibre in your meal. Adding mushrooms to your burger will help in reducing cholesterol and contribute to a rich antioxidants diet.

Ingredients: Olive oil, mushrooms, salt, pepper, whole-wheat burger buns and red lettuce

Calorie count: 473

Chicken breast with shaved cabbage

Did you know that both broccoli and cabbage are loaded with nutrients that could prevent cancer cells from growing in your body? With only up to 3.2 grams of saturated fat, this dish is rich in potassium, another nutrient that helps keep your blood pressure down.

Ingredients: Boneless chicken breast halves, salt, broccoli stems, olive oil, lemon juice, pepper, cabbage, celery stalks, hazelnuts, parsley and parmesan cheese

Calorie count: 309

Barley-stuffed poblanos

Spend no more than an hour in the kitchen to prepare yourself an appetising yet tummy-tucking dish. The chilli powder will instantly give a kick to your metabolism, contributing to more than one-third of your daily fibre. The dish also delivers about 30 per cent of your calcium for the day.

Ingredients: Olive oil, onion, barley, kale, chilli powder, garlic, tomatoes, salt, poblano peppers, white cheddar and cheese

Calorie count: 382

Spaghetti with greens and parsley pesto

This meal makes for an excellent post-workout fuel, offering a great mix of whole grains and protein. It helps keep you energised, since it provides one-third of your daily iron needs. You get antioxidants from the veggies, herbs and walnuts in the dish. Try this one-of-a-kind dish for a lean, healthier you.

Ingredients: Whole-wheat spaghetti, parsley, baby spinach, walnuts, garlic, olive oil, lemon zest, salt, black pepper and eggs

Calorie count: 439

By Manaal Khurram 

Published in The Express Tribune, October 27th, 2015.

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