Eating Healthy: the Basics

1. What is a healthy breakfast?
2. What is a healthy lunch?
3. What is a healthy dinner?
4. How much should I weigh?
5. How many calories should I be eating?
6. What is the best way to lose weight?
7. How can I keep my weight loss goal in mind and stay motivated?
8. What is a healthy weekly weight loss?
9. How to set weight loss goals and make them happen
10. How to keep a food diary, and why it is essential to successful weight loss
11. Are all fats bad for you?
12. Are saturated fats bad for you?
13. Are unsaturated fats good for you?
14. Are carbohydrates bad for you?
15. Is fiber good for you?
16. How to read nutrition/food labels
17. How to plan your weekly menus
18. Why should I eat less salt?
19. What do the sodium (salt) numbers mean on food labels?
20. What is The Mediterranean Diet?
21. Why eating vegetables is good for you
22. Why eating fruit and nuts is good for you
23. Why are cereals and whole grains good for you?
24. What are legumes, and why are they good for you?
25. Why is eating fish good for you?
26. Which fats and oils are good for you?
27. Are dairy products good for you?
28. Which meats should I not eat?
29. Is drinking alcohol good for you?
30. Is it important to measure your ingredients?
31. Are snacks good for you?
32. How to choose the right portion size
33. Can you lose weight with a smaller plate?
34. Eat healthier by cleaning out your pantry
35. Which oils and fats should I keep in my pantry?
35. Which oils and fats are good for you - and when should I use them?
36. Which carbohydrates are good for you?
37. What is the best chicken or turkey for you?
38. Are dairy products good for you?
39. Which nuts and seeds should I eat?
40. Is red meat like beef or pork bad or good for you?
41. Is eating dessert good or bad for you?
42. Is drinking soda bad for you?
43. Is drinking coffee bad for you?
44. How can healthy food taste good? Part 1
45. How can healthy food taste good? Part 2
46. How to eat healthy while eating out
47. Are vitamins and supplements necessary to eat healthy?
48. How to eat healthy while traveling


Eating Healthy: the Basics

What is a healthy lunch?

There’s so much good to be said for how much you can change your health by making your own lunch. We know from research that skipping breakfast or lunch (or both) makes it harder to lose weight or maintain a healthy weight.

One of the first questions that I ask my patients is what they have for lunch. It’s clear that not many people take their lunch to work and that’s key to making sure you get the highest quality calories. When you are getting started eating better it's important that you make lunch and take it to work with you. The easiest thing for most folks is to make a sandwich. Here are some guidelines for items that you should pick up at the grocery and keep on hand for making a quick and easy lunch.

Sandwiches, Defined:

Whole Sandwich (2 lunch servings)
2 slices whole wheat bread with 2 ounces lean meat or reduced-fat cheese.

Half Sandwich (1 lunch serving)
1 slice whole wheat bread with 1 ounce lean meat or reduced-fat cheese.

Meat & Cheese Choices:
Reduced-fat Swiss
Reduced-fat Cheddar
Reduced-fat Monterey Jack
Goat Cheese
Lean Ham slices
Lean Turkey slices
2 Tbsp. Peanut Butter

Toppings (use as much as you like):
Sliced tomato
Arugula (Rocket)
Sliced cucumber
Sliced peppers
Any kind of sprout

Spreads (choose one)
Hellman’s Extra Light Mayonnaise: 1 Tbsp.
Any Coarse Ground Mustard: 1 Tbsp.
Dijon Style Mustard: 1 Tbsp.
Your Favorite Chutney: 1 Tbsp.
Roasted Garlic: 2 cloves
Tapenade: 1 Tbsp.


A lot of patients ask me about having a salad at lunch. They would like to have one with their sandwich or with a half serving of soup. This is a great idea since greens and most veggies don’t add up to many calories and are chock full of fiber, vitamins and antioxidants.

There are some recipes for salad dressings included in the Sides & Extras recipes section for just this purpose. These generally have about 50 calories in a serving and this is the most that you would want your dressing to have. Remember that if the greens are very dry you will need less dressing because it clings to the salad better.


Dinner leftovers make the perfect lunch. It's a great idea to make extra at night so you have something to take for lunch. The rule of thumb is that a lunch serving is half of a leftover dinner serving.