May 24, 2024

This Mediterranean-inspired meal plan is designed to nurture your gut health while providing a variety of delicious and nutritious options.

Why the Mediterranean Diet & Gut Health?

The Mediterranean diet, consistently ranked among the best overall diets, emphasizes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, healthy fats, and lean protein. Research shows it can reduce the risk of various health issues and promote a healthy weight.

Similarly, a healthy gut microbiome offers numerous benefits, including improved digestion, mood, sleep, and heart health.

This meal plan incorporates foods that support both the Mediterranean diet and gut health principles. It’s designed for 1,500 calories, but modifications are provided for 1,200 and 2,000 calorie needs.

Focus on These Foods:

  • Mediterranean Diet Staples: Fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts, seeds, healthy fats (olive oil, avocado), fish, lean protein (eggs, poultry), and moderate dairy.
  • Gut-Friendly Foods: Probiotic foods (yogurt, kefir) and prebiotic foods (garlic, asparagus, bananas).

Meal Prep Tips:

  • Bake Banana Protein Muffins (breakfast Days 2, 3, snack Day 4).
  • Make Creamy Blueberry-Pecan Overnight Oatmeal (breakfast Days 4, 5) on Day 3 evening.
  • Prepare Everything Bagel Crispy Chickpeas (snack Days 6, 7) on Day 3 evening.

Sample Daily Meal Plan:

Each day includes a sample meal plan with breakfast, AM and PM snacks, lunch, and dinner. Calorie adjustments are provided alongside each day.

Day 1

  • Breakfast (249 calories): Raspberry-Kefir Power Smoothie
  • AM Snack (211 calories): Blueberries with cashews
  • Lunch (439 calories): Tomato-Avocado Cheese Sandwich
  • PM Snack (163 calories): Hummus with cucumber and walnuts
  • Dinner (429 calories): Charred Shrimp, Pesto & Quinoa Bowls

Day 2

  • Breakfast (254 calories): Banana Protein Muffins with orange
  • AM Snack (208 calories): Fig & Honey Yogurt
  • Lunch (429 calories): Leftover Charred Shrimp, Pesto & Quinoa Bowls
  • PM Snack (101 calories): Pear
  • Dinner (504 calories): Sheet-Pan Salmon with Sweet Potatoes & Broccoli

Calorie Adjustments:

  • 1,200 calories: Omit orange at breakfast, swap AM snack for 1 cup air-popped popcorn, reduce pear to ½ serving at PM snack.
  • 2,000 calories: Add 2 hard-boiled eggs to breakfast, increase almonds to ¼ cup at AM snack, add 2 ounces low-fat Cheddar cheese to PM snack.

Day 3

  • Breakfast (373 calories): Double serving Banana Protein Muffins with kefir and clementines
  • AM Snack (173 calories): Raspberries with Cheddar cheese and pistachios
  • Lunch (353 calories): Cucumber-Chicken Green Goddess Wrap
  • PM Snack (200 calories): Edamame in pods
  • Dinner (408 calories): Kielbasa-Swiss Spaghetti Squash Casserole with whole-wheat baguette and steamed broccoli

Calorie Adjustments:

  • 1,200 calories: Omit clementines, reduce kefir to ½ serving at breakfast, reduce edamame to ½ cup at PM snack, omit baguette at dinner.
  • 2,000 calories: Add 2 scrambled eggs to breakfast, increase raspberries to 1 ½ cups at AM snack, add 2 servings Creamy Dill Yogurt Sauce to lunch, increase edamame to 2 cups at PM snack, increase baguette to 2 slices at dinner.

Day 4

  • Breakfast (291 calories): Creamy Blueberry-Pecan Overnight Oatmeal
  • AM Snack (176 calories): Apple with walnuts
  • Lunch (430 calories): Mason Jar Power Salad with Chickpeas & Tuna
  • PM Snack (193 calories): Banana Protein Muffin
  • Dinner (411 calories): Lentil Salad with Feta, Tomatoes, Cucumbers & Olives + 3 oz cooked chicken

Calorie Adjustments:

  • 1,200 calories: Reduce walnuts to 1 tablespoon at AM snack, omit chicken at dinner, swap PM snack for 1 small banana.
  • 2,000 calories: Add 2 tablespoons peanut butter to breakfast, increase walnuts to ¼ cup at AM snack, add 1 ounce dark chocolate to PM snack, increase chicken to 4 ounces at dinner.

Day 5

  • Breakfast (291 calories): Creamy Blueberry-Pecan Overnight Oatmeal
  • AM Snack (210 calories): Banana with peanut butter
  • Lunch (368 calories): Lentil Salad with Feta, Tomatoes, Cucumbers & Olives + 4 oz canned tuna
  • PM Snack (206 calories): Almonds (¼ cup)
  • Dinner (414 calories): BBQ Shrimp with Garlicky Kale & Parmesan-Herb Couscous

Calorie Adjustments:

  • 1,200 calories: Omit peanut butter at AM snack, swap PM snack for ½ small pear.
  • 2,000 calories: Add 2 tablespoons peanut butter to breakfast, add ½ whole-wheat pita to lunch, increase almonds to 5 tablespoons at PM snack, add 1 ounce dark chocolate to dinner.

Day 6

  • Breakfast (311 calories): Broccoli & Cheese Omelet with ½ whole-wheat English muffin
  • AM Snack (301 calories): Pear with almonds
  • Lunch (333 calories): Gochujang-Glazed Tempeh & Brown Rice Bowls
  • PM Snack (220 calories): Everything-Bagel Crispy Chickpeas
  • Dinner (330 calories): Green Shakshuka with Spinach, Chard & Feta + ½ whole-wheat pita

Calorie Adjustments:

  • 1,200 calories: Omit English muffin at breakfast, omit almonds at AM snack, reduce pita to ¼ at dinner.
  • 2,000 calories: Increase to 1 whole English muffin at breakfast, add ½ cup kimchi and 2 tablespoons chopped peanuts to lunch, increase chickpeas to 2 servings at PM snack, increase pita to 1 whole at dinner.

Day 7

  • Breakfast (296 calories): Spinach & Egg Scramble with Raspberries
  • AM Snack (121 calories): Low-fat kefir with chia seeds & honey
  • Lunch (488 calories): Crispy Smoked Tofu & Coleslaw Wraps
  • PM Snack (220 calories): Everything-Bagel Crispy Chickpeas
  • Dinner (383 calories): Easy Miso-Chicken Ramen

Calorie Adjustments:

  • 1,200 calories: Omit honey and chia seeds from AM snack, reduce kefir to ¼ cup and swap PM snack for ½ cup air-popped popcorn.
  • 2,000 calories: Add 1 large banana to breakfast, increase to 1 cup kefir, 2 teaspoons chia seeds and 2 teaspoons honey at AM snack, increase chickpeas to 2 servings at PM snack and add 1 hard-boiled egg to dinner.

Ready to Discover Delicious Recipes and Support Your Gut Health?

This sample meal plan provides a glimpse into the delicious possibilities of this 7-day Mediterranean-inspired gut-healthy approach. For the full recipes, detailed nutritional information, and meal-prep guidance, visit the original content!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *