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Losing weight can be challenging. That’s why a lot of people seek out fad diets for quick results so they can get a win underneath their belt. Yet these approaches rarely lead to sustainable weight loss. The excessive food restrictions can also impact your health. 

To achieve sustainable weight loss results, it’s essential to adopt a balanced approach to your meal planning. In this blog post, we’ll explore meal plan ideas for sustainable weight loss that not only help you shed pounds but also promote overall health without feeling restricted with food.

Prioritize Nutrient-Dense Foods

The foundation of any sustainable weight loss meal plan is to prioritize nutrient-dense foods. These foods provide essential vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients without excessive calories. Having a variety of nutrient-dense foods in your nutrition regimen ensures you’re nourishing your body while managing your calorie intake. Examples include:

  • Fruits and vegetables: Loaded with vitamins, minerals, and fiber, these should form a significant portion of your meals.
  • Lean proteins: Choose sources like skinless poultry, lean cuts of beef or pork, tofu, legumes, and fish. Bonus points if you get grass fed & finished meats or wild caught seafood. 
  • Whole grains or gluten-free carbs: Whole grains like brown rice, quinoa, oats, and whole wheat pasta instead of refined or enriched grains. My go-to GF carbs are sweet potatoes, potatoes, beans, and lentils.

Healthy fats: Include sources like avocados, nuts, seeds, olives, olive oil, or coconut oil in moderation.

Portion Control

Portion control plays a crucial role in sustainable weight loss. Even healthy foods can lead to weight gain if consumed in excessive amounts, especially fat-rich foods. Using smaller plates can help with portion control, as well as getting to-go boxes at a restaurant. A good rule of thumb is to fill half of your plate with vegetables, a quarter with lean protein, and a quarter with whole grains or gluten-free carbs.

Balanced Macros

Balancing macronutrients (carbohydrates, protein, and fats) is essential for sustainable weight loss. Each macro plays a unique role in your body and an imbalanced plate can lead to cravings, overeating, and potentially weight gain. A balanced plate also helps stabilize blood sugar levels and control hunger.

  • Carbohydrates like whole grains, legumes, and vegetables are your body’s first line of energy. When you are feeling low energy or are gearing up for a workout, carbohydrates will help fuel your body.
  • Protein breaks down in the body slower than carbs which keep you full longer. It also plays a key role in building muscle mass.
  • Fats take the longest to break down in the body which is why fats are so calorically dense. Healthy fats help regulate hormones, support brain development, and keep you full longer.

This is why having a mix of carbs, proteins, and fats on your plate will keep you full for weight loss results and nourish your whole body.

Meal Prep

Meal prepping can be a game-changer for those looking to lose weight sustainably. Preparing your meals in advance not only saves time but also allows you to make healthier choices. Here’s how to get started with meal prep:

  • Plan your meals: Creating a meal plan for the week makes it easy to include a variety of nutritious foods.
  • Batch cook: Cooking large quantities of grains, proteins, and vegetables on the weekend and portioning them into individual containers leads to an easy grab and go option for those nights where you feel too tired to cook.
  • Grab-and-go snacks: Have healthy snacks prepared or available so you have options when you feel hungry. My go-to snacks are cut-up veggies with dips, yogurt, homemade muffins, boiled eggs, jerky, olives, and fruit.

Mindful Eating

Eating mindfully involves paying full attention to your food, savoring each bite, and being in tune with your body’s hunger and fullness cues. This practice can help you develop a healthier relationship with food and prevent overeating. Here are some tips for mindful eating:

  • Eat without distractions: Avoid eating in front of the TV, computer, or phone.
  • Savor your food: Take time to appreciate the flavors and textures of your meals. This can be done by taking deep breaths while eating.
  • Listen to your body: Eat when you’re hungry, and stop when you’re satisfied, not overly full.
  • Slow down: Chew your food thoroughly and pause between bites. Focus on drinking water while you are eating too and this will help with slowing down.


Proper hydration is often overlooked but is essential for overall health and weight loss. Our bodies can easily confuse thirst with hunger which leads to unnecessary snacking. Make sure you are drinking enough water throughout the day. My go-to strategy is to have a 20oz water jug with me and focus on drinking 4-5 servings of water out of my jug each day.

Healthy Snacking

Snacking can be a part of a sustainable weight loss plan, as long as you choose nutritious options. When you feel hungry between meals, reach for healthy snacks like:

  • Greek yogurt with berries
  • A handful of mixed nuts with fruit
  • Sliced veggies with hummus
  • Apple slices with almond butter
  • Jerky with fruit
  • A delicious smoothie with a plant-based protein
  • Boiled eggs with a homemade muffin

Try to avoid sugary or processed snacks. This leads to a spike in your blood sugar, energy crashes and future cravings, especially if it’s not paired with a protein.

Variety and Moderation

Eating the same foods day in and day out can become monotonous and lead to cravings for unhealthy options. To keep your meal plan exciting and sustainable, incorporate a variety of foods into your diet. Enjoy your favorite treats in moderation, and don’t deprive yourself entirely, as this can lead to binge eating in the long run.

Regular Exercise

While meal planning plays a significant role in weight loss, combining it with regular exercise enhances your results. My go-to is a mix of cardio and strength-training workouts to increase your energy expenditure and build lean muscle. Find activities you enjoy to make exercise a sustainable part of your routine like running, walking hills, hiking, dancing, swimming, etc.

Seek Professional Guidance

Lastly, it’s crucial to consult with a healthcare provider, nutritionist, and/or personal trainer when embarking on any weight loss journey. This is especially true if you have underlying health conditions or dietary restrictions like Hoshimoto’s thyroiditis. They can provide personalized guidance and support to ensure your healthy choices are aligned with your goals and your body’s needs. Our personal trainers have supported hundreds of clients throughout their weight loss journey and can be contacted today!

Sustainable weight loss is not about quick fixes or extreme restrictions; it’s about adopting a balanced and healthy approach to eating and lifestyle. By prioritizing nutrient-dense foods, controlling portions, and embracing mindful eating, you can achieve your weight loss goals while promoting overall well-being. Remember that patience and consistency are key, and reaching out to us at can help make this journey feel easier for you!

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