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Seven Healthy Dinners for January Weight Loss

December 9, 2021
Seven Healthy Dinners for January Weight Loss - Lark Health

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In this article: 

  • Many people resolve to lose weight in the New Year.
  • A good dinner for weight loss keeps calories and carbs in check. It supports restful sleep. It has essential nutrients. It is easy to make and tastes good.
  • These are 7 dinner ideas to help you reach your goals.
  • Lark can offer more weight loss and health tips in 2022.

Losing Weight in the New Year

Millions of Americans resolve to lose weight each January. Your dinner can impact whether you reach your goals. The right dinner can keep you nourished and full without having too many calories or keeping you up at night.

Following are 7 ideas for dinners that can help you reach your health and weight loss goals. When you plan your meals, they have the following characteristics:

  • Easy and quick to make so they can fit into a busy lifestyle and you do not need to go to a restaurant instead
  • Have moderately low counts for carbohydrates and calories, so they fit into a weight loss plan
  • They are flexible, so you can use ingredients that you like and have on hand
  • They taste good!

Enjoy trying these dinners or just getting inspiration from them and making them your own.

Meal Ideas to Lose Weight

1. Chicken Mushroom Stew

Chicken Stew with Mushrooms

Stew is filling and it can be a good way to get more vegetables. You can make stew on the weekend or when you have time. Then refrigerate or freeze what you do not eat immediately. Serve this stew with a small serving of starch, such as a small baked sweet potato or ‚1/3 cup of cooked whole-wheat pasta or brown rice.

  • Cook chicken in a pot with a small amount of olive oil.
  • Set chicken aside
  • Cook garlic and onion in that pot until soft
  • Add in chopped zucchini, green pepper, mushrooms, and tomatoes.
  • Stir in tomato pasta, dried thyme, oregano, and basil, and low-sodium chicken stock.
  • Simmer until everything is cooked.

2. Tilapia Parmesan Stuffed Red Pepper 

This recipe swaps tilapia, whole-wheat breadcrumbs, and low-sodium broth for sausage, breadcrumbs, and butter. Italian seasoning and parmesan cheese add flavor, too.

  • Cook onions and garlic in a skillet with a small amount of olive oil.
  • Add tilapia (3 ounces per person) and cook it.
  • Add a mixture of whole-wheat breadcrumbs (3 tablespoons per person), parmesan cheese (1/2 ounce per person), and Italian seasoning. Mix well.
  • Add enough low-sodium broth to achieve the desired consistency.
  • Stuff the mixture into roasted bell pepper halves and top with a bit more=parmesan cheese.
  • Bake at 400 until the cheese melts.

3. Chicken Strawberry Crunch Salad 

Chicken Strawberry Crunch Salad

Salads are easy and filling. This one is a great way to use up leftover chicken, and you can use almost any kind of fruit. You can make your own croutons by breaking whole-wheat bread into cubes, tossing it with olive oil, pressed garlic, and basil or rosemary, and baking the cubes.

These items can go into your salad.

  • Lettuce, spring mix, arugula, or other greens
  • Cherry or grape tomatoes, diced onion, and sliced cucumber
  • Cooked skinless chicken breast
  • Sliced strawberries
  • 1 ounce of crumbled blue or goat cheese or shredded low-fat cheddar cheese
  • Sliced almonds or roasted sunflower seeds or pepitas

Serve the salad with 2 tablespoons of light vinaigrette or a mixture of olive oil and balsamic vinegar.

4. Baked Salmon with Creamy Lemon Dill Sauce and Eggplant

Baked Salmon with Creamy Lemon Dill Sauce

Salmon and eggplant both go well with yogurty lemon sauce. This dinner has heart-healthy fats, dietary fiber, and antioxidants. You can get it on the table in less than half an hour!

  • Rub salmon with fresh chopped dill, black pepper, and lemon zest.
  • Bake it at the same time you bake slices of eggplant drizzled with olive oil.
  • Squeeze lemon juice onto the salmon and serve the fish and eggplant with a sauce made with plain Greek yogurt, lemon zest, and freshly chopped dill.

5. Whole-Grain Vegetable Lasagna

Low-Carb Spinach Lasagna

These swaps can help turn lasagna into a waist-friendly comfort food that the whole family can enjoy. If you cannot find whole-grain lasagna noodles, you can use any shape of whole-grain pasta and turn the dish into a casserole.

These tips can help.

  • Use whole-grain lasagna noodles instead of refined white ones.
  • Use ‚2/3 of the amount of pasta as usual, or 1 to 1.5 ounces of dry pasta per serving.
  • Lean ground turkey is lower in fat than ground beef. Better yet, skip the turkey or beef. The dish has plenty of protein without it. Or you can add plant-based protein such as vegetable or soy protein or beans.
  • Make your own sauce with tomatoes, basil, onion, green pepper, garlic, and zucchini. Or use a low-sugar tomato sauce and add vegetables.
  • Mushrooms give the lasagna more heartiness.
  • Add spinach or cooked broccoli florets are good to add when adding layers.
  • Low-fat cheese options include non-fat cottage cheese, fat-free mozzarella, and low-fat parmesan.

A green side salad can complete a filling, nutritious meal.

6. Burger Bar

Veggie burger

"Make-your-own" bars are great for families and for healthy eaters. Everyone gets the chance to make something they love. And health-conscious diners (like you) can choose items that will help you reach your goals. 

Lean ground turkey patties, veggie or black bean burgers, falafel, and roasted portobello mushrooms are nutritious choices for the burger instead of ground beef patties. These are some toppings to consider.

  • Crunchy and fresh sprouts or leaves of lettuce, arugula, or spinach
  • Tomato slices
  • Roasted slices of zucchini, eggplant, or bell peppers
  • Onions or mushrooms sauteed in cooking spray
  • Yellow, dijon, or spicy brown mustard
  • Guacamole, avocado slices, hummus, or basil pesto
  • Fat-free sliced cheese, 

Whole-grain hamburger buns (considering eating just half), lettuce leaves, and whole-grain wraps can hold your burger.

7. Beans and Brown Rice Skillet

You cannot beat a one-dish dinner for convenience. And you get the satisfaction of cooking a home-made meal and choosing healthy ingredients.

For this skillet dinner, heat olive oil and garlic in a skillet. Add brown rice and low-sodium broth, bring it to a boil, and simmer it until the brown rice is nearly cooked. Add zucchini, black beans, canned tomatoes, cumin, chili powder, onion powder, and oregano. Cook gently (adding more broth if needed) until the zucchini softens. Serve with low-fat cheddar cheese and sliced avocados.

This year can be your year! Lark can help you reach your health and weight loss goals without dieting! Lark's coaching is available 24/7 through your smartphone. Features include daily check-ins, meal logging features, and instant feedback.

You can still eat great-tasting, favorite foods and lose weight. There are ways to eat foods you love while making healthier choices. Lark's nutrition and weight loss coaching can help you make small changes to stay on track or get back on track if you got a little off during the holidays.

Your health insurance might cover Lark at no cost to you. Click here to find out if you may be eligible for Lark!

About Lark

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