May 24, 2024

Savor the season’s flavors while reducing inflammation with this anti-inflammatory meal plan for winter.

Embrace the cozy vibes of winter with hearty soups, stews, and comforting meals – all designed to fight inflammation! Recent research highlights the link between chronic inflammation and various health issues like heart disease, arthritis, and even diabetes.

Fortunately, we can combat inflammation through our diet. This 7-day plan incorporates anti-inflammatory ingredients, while promoting overall wellness through regular exercise, sufficient sleep, and stress reduction. While winter often tempts us with indulgences, it’s also prime time to embrace anti-inflammatory powerhouses like soups, stews, and comforting winter dishes. Plus, come January, most of us crave a return to nutrient-rich vegetables.

This delicious meal plan will help you fill your plate with good-for-you, anti-inflammatory ingredients throughout the week.

Tailoring Your Calorie Intake:

If weight loss is your goal, this plan provides 1,500 calories per day, a level that promotes weight loss for most people. We’ve also included modifications for 1,200 and 2,000 calorie needs.

Understanding the Anti-Inflammatory Diet:

The anti-inflammatory diet closely resembles the Mediterranean diet, emphasizing specific foods and nutrients known to reduce chronic inflammation. Both diets prioritize fruits, vegetables, fish, healthy fats, whole grains, and legumes, while limiting processed foods, excess meat, and added sugars. Additionally, the anti-inflammatory diet emphasizes antioxidant-rich foods like berries and dark leafy greens, alongside healthy fats from fish, avocado, nuts, and seeds.

Building Your Week of Anti-Inflammatory Meals:

Meal Prep Tip: Prepare the Four-Bean & Pumpkin Chili on Day 1 so you have lunch ready for Days 2 through 5.

Day 1 Menu:

  • Breakfast (344 calories): Avocado & Arugula Omelet
  • A.M. Snack (179 calories): Sliced Carrots with Hummus
  • Lunch (464 calories): Mason Jar Power Salad with Chickpeas & Tuna
  • P.M. Snack (131 calories): Pear
  • Dinner (387 calories): Salmon Caesar Salad with Whole-Wheat Bread

Modifications:

  • 1,200 Calories: Skip hummus, swap lunch for White Bean & Veggie Salad, and have sliced cucumber for the P.M. snack.
  • 2,000 Calories: Add Raspberry-Kefir Power Smoothie to breakfast and 30 almonds to the P.M. snack.

Day 2 Menu:

  • Breakfast (410 calories): Anti-Inflammatory Cherry-Spinach Smoothie
  • A.M. Snack (206 calories): Almonds
  • Lunch (370 calories): Four-Bean & Pumpkin Chili
  • P.M. Snack (82 calories): Low-Fat Plain Kefir
  • Dinner (439 calories): Cauliflower Chicken Curry with Mixed Greens & Lemon-Garlic Vinaigrette

Modifications:

  • 1,200 Calories: Swap breakfast for Raspberry-Kefir Power Smoothie and have an orange for the A.M. snack.
  • 2,000 Calories: Add peanut butter to lunch and sliced avocado to your dinner salad.

Day 3 Menu:

  • Breakfast (410 calories): Anti-Inflammatory Cherry-Spinach Smoothie
  • A.M. Snack (268 calories): Greek Yogurt with Chopped Walnuts
  • Lunch (370 calories): Four-Bean & Pumpkin Chili
  • P.M. Snack (42 calories): Kiwi
  • Dinner (405 calories): Chicken with Tomato-Basil Pan Sauce & Quinoa

Modifications:

  • 1,200 Calories: Swap breakfast for Raspberry-Kefir Power Smoothie and skip the walnuts at the A.M. snack.
  • 2,000 Calories: Add peanut butter to lunch, almonds to the P.M. snack, and Roasted Broccoli with Lemon-Garlic Vinaigrette to dinner.

Day 4 Menu:

Greek Stuffed Eggplant

  • Breakfast (325 calories): Greek Yogurt with Raspberries & Walnuts
  • A.M. Snack (206 calories): Almonds
  • Lunch (370 calories): Four-Bean & Pumpkin Chili
  • P.M. Snack (155 calories): Hard-boiled Eggs
  • Dinner (463 calories): Greek Stuffed Eggplant with Cucumber & Avocado Salad

Modifications:

  • 1,200 Calories: Swap the A.M. snack for sliced cucumber and skip the apple at lunch.
  • 2,000 Calories: Add a pear to the A.M. snack, peanut butter to lunch, and Everything Bagel Avocado Toast to the P.M. snack.

Day 5 Menu:

  • Breakfast (325 calories): Greek Yogurt with Raspberries & Walnuts
  • A.M. Snack (235 calories): Walnut Halves
  • Lunch (370 calories): Four-Bean & Pumpkin Chili
  • P.M. Snack (62 calories): Orange
  • Dinner (517 calories): Vegan Lentil Soup with Guacamole Chopped Salad

Meal-Prep Tip: Reserve 2 servings of Vegan Lentil Soup for lunch on Days 6 and 7.

Modifications:

  • 1,200 Calories: Swap the A.M. snack for a clementine and skip the apple at lunch.
  • 2,000 Calories: Add peanut butter to lunch and almonds to the P.M. snack.

Day 6 Menu:

  • Breakfast (410 calories): Anti-Inflammatory Cherry-Spinach Smoothie
  • A.M. Snack (110 calories): Low-Fat Plain Kefir
  • Lunch (403 calories): Vegan Lentil Soup
  • P.M. Snack (5 calories): Sliced Cucumber
  • Dinner (588 calories): Massaged Kale Salad with Roasted Sweet Potato & Black Beans

Modifications:

  • 1,200 Calories: Swap breakfast for Raspberry-Kefir Power Smoothie and skip the pear at lunch.
  • 2,000 Calories: Add an apple to breakfast, almonds to the A.M. snack, and hummus to the P.M. snack.

Day 7 Menu:

  • Breakfast (344 calories): Avocado & Arugula Omelet
  • A.M. Snack (140 calories): Greek Yogurt with Raspberries
  • Lunch (403 calories): Vegan Lentil Soup
  • P.M. Snack (95 calories): Apple
  • Dinner (511 calories): Sicilian-Style Chicken Thighs

Modifications:

  • 1,200 Calories: Skip the yogurt at the A.M. snack, skip the pear at lunch, and have an orange for the P.M. snack.
  • 2,000 Calories: Add Raspberry-Kefir Power Smoothie to breakfast, walnuts to the A.M. snack, and peanut butter to the P.M. snack.

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