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This Week’s Meal Plan: 1/26/15

Hey Hey! I am really excited about some of the meals I am sharing this week with you all. I keep it pretty simple most of the time, but try and find a couple of new recipes to add to my favorite “go-to’s” at home each week, and some of these definitely will be added as repeats for a long time! My husband’s birthday was Monday, so that was definitely inspiration to find a new tasty recipe we both would enjoy! Head over here to read more about my meal plans and why I decided to start sharing them with you all.

Nutrition Highlight from this week’s menu is: Wild Caught Salmon

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Wild Salmon is not only an excellent source of omega 3 fatty acids, but has almost a perfect ratio of omega6 to omega 3 fatty acids at approximately 1:1. This is largely due to the natural environment they are raised in which allows them to eat wild sea plants like krill that have a perfect fatty acid ratio. Farm raised fish unfortunately do not have access to wild plant sea life and are supplemented with a diet that is not natural for them including a variety of grains that are extremely high in omega 6 fatty acids. Farm raised fish have been shown to have a ratio of omega 6 to omega 3 fatty acids at approximately 4.5:1. This still is not too bad, but if you are striving for optimal health, wild caught fish is definitely a better option and also more sustainable for the environment. There is rising concern about the levels of heavy metals and other pesticide residues in fish these days and wild caught fish is known to contain the lowest levels of these toxins. In fact one study investigated over 700 samples of salmon samples from around the world and found that on average the PCB concentrations in ¬†farm raised salmon were eight times higher than in wild caught salmon. PCB’s (polychlorinated biphenyls) are strongly associated with cancer and other health problems. While the these levels are reportedly safe according to the FDA, there are definitely fewer risks associated with eating wild caught salmon.

Wild caught Salmon is also high in selenium, a mineral that plays an important role as an antioxidant, preventing free-radical damage to cell membranes. Low levels of selenium raise a risk for cancer, cardiovascular disease, inflammatory diseases and many other health problems (Encyclopedia of Healing Foods, Michael Murray). It also is important for healthy thyroid function.

If you are looking for a high quality source of wild caught salmon, this is one I recommend. If you are shopping at the grocery store, just make sure to read your labels and look for wild caught (Alaskan preferrably), and not farm raised. Any fish with the msc (marine stewardship council) label on it are also a good indicator that it was raised sustainably.

**And now for this week’s meal plan**

Monday

Lunch: Grass-fed Buffalo Summer Sausage slices with a side of baby carrots and 1 full avocado

Dinner: Bacon Wrapped Dates and Pineapple Chunks (purchase sugar free bacon from wild caught pork), Grilled Salmon with Avocado Salsa and Red Rainbow Cabbage Salad from Practical Paleo

  • It was my husband’s birthday so I went all out with a full course meal! It was a hit!
  • I baked my salmon at 350 for about 12 minutes and it was still fabulous!!
  • The salad recipe I used is exclusively available only in the Practical Paleo cookbook. I highly recommend it, but this recipe is similar if you want to make it without purchasing the book. If you are strictly trying to eliminate all added sugars from your diet just don’t use the maple syrup in this recipe.

Tuesday

Lunch: Grassfed Buffalo Summer Sausage slices with a large side salad

  • Side Salad: 2 handfuls mixed greens, 1 full avocado, cucumber slices, diced tomatoes, and topped with some leftover red rainbow cabbage salad

Dinner: Bacon-Wrapped Smoky Chicken Thighs, Homemade Sweet Potato Fries and Steamed Broccoli

  • I used only 1 piece of bacon per chicken thigh and that was plenty
  • I prefer to sprinkle sea salt on my homemade sweet potato fries and use coconut oil, but both are delicious. Ground Cinnamon used in this recipe makes for more of a sweet taste.

Wednesday

Lunch: Grassfed Buffalo Summer Sausage Slices + Side Salad

  • Yes I eat almost the same thing for lunches everyday if it’s not leftovers. Why make things more complicated than they need to be? Find what works for you and your schedule and stick with it! This never gets old to me, is healthy and most importantly, quick and easy during busy days. The summer sausage also makes for great healthy lunchables for kiddos!
  • Side Salad: 2 handfuls of mixed greens, shredded carrots, pineapple chunks, drizzled with raspberry vinegar

Dinner: Barbacoa Beef Burrito Bowls

Thursday

Lunch: Grassfed Beef Salami Roll-Ups

  • Roll up sliced avocado and any other raw veggies you like (bell peppers, onions, tomatoes etc.) into the salami and eat like a wrap. Eat as many as you need to to satisfy your appetite and keep you full for the next 4-5 hours.

Dinner: Leftover Barbacoa Beef Burrito Bowls

Friday

Lunch: Leftover Barbacoa Beef Burrito Bowls

  • Again? Why yes indeed! I love making tons to last me throughout the week if that means it saves me time in the kitchen! If you don’t like eating the same thing everyday, store your leftovers in the freezer and pull it out when you’re ready to eat it again maybe next week.

Dinner: We will be eating out!

 

Meal Prepping Tips

  • Make a note of when to take meats out of the freezer to dethaw at least 5 hours before and put that note somewhere where you will see it! I don’t know how many times I have forgotten to dethaw meat and it is the most frustrating thing ever when you are starving. Don’t let that happen to you with this simple tip.
  • On allotted meal prep day at beginning of week, do the following:
  1. For Monday’s dinner: chop up the whole head of red cabbage, shred carrots (only if you didn’t buy pre-shredded), chop up broccoli stems, chop up all onions, chop up mango. Store all in zip lock baggies or individual containers to mix together for red rainbow cabbage salad the next day.
  2. For Tuesdays dinner: make the Smoky Spice Blend, chop up all sweet potatoes into fries and store in the fridge
  3. For Wednesday’s dinner: chop up the onions, and peppers and break cauliflower into florets to easily throw in a blender. Look at your schedule. You will need to either make a note to prep this meal Tuesday night to slow cook all night, or make sure you have time Wednesday morning to get it in the crockpot.
  4. For all lunches: slice up all lunch meats and chop up tomatoes, cucumber and any other veggies you will be adding to your lunch salads/roll-ups

 

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