How this Fast Diet Lifestyle works: Eat these meals tomorrow. On Monday, eat the meals that will be posted on Sunday.  Eat sensibly the other days of the week.  That’s it.  Simple way to lose weight and be healthier.

This is not an homage to a band wearing crazy make-up, but a return to the adage “Keep It Simple, Stupid.”  While some would bristle at the implication of being called an imbecile, I am aware that sometimes recipes can get rather involved and complicated.  If you don’t care for cooking or you don’t have time, a long-winded recipe can be daunting. In these early weeks of back to school, when getting into new schedules is anxiety-producing, I propose the most simple of menus.  Originally created for our friend Lillian, these should find a place in your menu rotation any time you need to Keep It Simple.

Breakfast125 cal           1 hardboiled egg +   1 oz ham, 3% fat   +   ½ cup strawberries  + lemon in hot water or black coffee or black tea

Lunch73 calories             ½ cup minestrone soup     [The soup could be served at dinner     instead of at lunch time]  Minestrone Soup: PB GF [if you use GF pasta]                                                      1/2 cup73 calories   1.5 g fat   2.6 g fiber   4 g protein   14 g carbs    43.2 mg Calcium                        1 tsp olive oil                                                                                                                                                          1 cup onion, chopped                                                                                                                                              2/3 cup carrot, chopped                                                                                                                                   ½ cup celery, chopped                                                                                                                                      2 cloves garlic, chopped                                                                                                                                    3 slices pepperoni [about 1/4 oz], chopped                                                                                                                              ½ cup sweet potato, cubed                                                                                                                                      ½ cup zucchini, diced                                                                                                                                             ½ cup mushrooms, chopped                                                                                                                           2 cups crushed tomatoes                                                                                                                                     ¾ cup small white beans, drained and rinsed if canned                                                                    lots of sage and rosemary, chopped                                                                                                                  1 cups water   + 2 cups chicken stock/broth, low sodium                                                                            1 oz pasta, all or some of it could be whole wheat if you are boosting fiber [orzo, dinetelli, broken spaghetti]                                                                                                                                                 salt and pepper to taste                                                                                                                                     2 tsp Parmasan cheese, grated                                                                                                                   

Put the olive oil, onion, carrot, celery, garlic and pepperoni into a sauce pan together and cook over medium heat until onions begin to wilt. Add the sweet potato, zucchini, mushrooms, tomatoes, white beans, herbs, and water. Cook at a simmer for about 20 minutes. Add the pasta and cook until it is soft. Add remaining ingredients. Taste and adjust for flavor.    HINT:  This recipe made 4 cups for me – 3 future meals from this recipe!

Dinner80 calories            2 oz chicken or turkey    +     2 oz green beans

Ingredients for next week: breakfast, single portion

Next week, I will give recipes for side-dishes and oft-used combinations 1.5 two-oz eggs
 bell pepper
 Tabasco sauce + cajun seasoning
Whatever you need for your hot beverage
Whatever you need for your smoothie

Dinner, single portion:

 1.75 cups cooked brown rice
 Celery + bell pepper
 Onion + garlic
 Crushed tomato
 1.75 cups red beans, canned
 Green beans or green peas
Sparkling water Sparkling water

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