Hello! My name’s Kristin and I’m the blogger behind Iowa Girl Eats, where I share my quick & easy recipe ideas, travel adventures, and workout routines. I was thrilled to receive FITNESS Magazine's Editor's Choice Fitterati Award for Best Healthy Eating Blog, and am excited to be posting here on FitnessMagazine.com!
I get a lot of emails from readers asking how I balance healthy eating with my husband's meat & potatoes appetite. It's not always easy, but here are some tips and tricks I've learned over the past four years of marriage to my bestie, Ben, for satisfying his appetite, while saving my waistline! (Click to keep reading!)
1. Modify your meals There’s a healthier alternative to nearly every not-so-healthy dish out there. Here are a few ways I make meals husband-friendly with a healthy twist.
- Ben's favorite dish in the entire world is mashed potatoes. I slim them down by steaming potatoes with cauliflower, then whipping them in the food processor with a bit of warmed skim milk, butter, salt & pepper until light and fluffy, then slathering them on top of Skinny Shepard's Pie. He couldn't believe when I told him it wasn't all potatoes on top!
- If burgers are on the menu, I’ll use 99% fat-free ground turkey breast or chicken instead of beef, and place them on fresh lettuce leaves instead of a bun like in Thai Chicken Burgers with Mango Salsa.
- If Ben’s craving fast-food, or a bar-type meal, I’ll make it healthier by making it at home. Bake tortilla chips then top with a moderate amount of garden-fresh toppings like in Greek Salad Nachos.
- Tricks like cooking brown rice for yourself and white rice for your man, and keeping wheat bread for you and white bread for him, are also easy changes to make!
2. Get Him in the kitchen The quickest way to get somebody to care about what they’re putting into their body is to have them make it themselves.
Your husband or boyfriend may ask for extra butter or salt when you’re making the meal, but if they see how much is actually going into the dish when they’re involved in the cooking process, I can almost guarantee you they’ll cut back.
3. Keep snacks separate
I want my husband to eat healthy so we can grow super old and wrinkly together, therefore I generally try and keep junk food out of the house. That said, I’m not the food police and can’t deny Ben the stuff he loves (ok I love them too) – potato chips, cookies, etc – so we keep separate snack shelves in the pantry.
This technique is actually more for me because if I see those Chewy Chips Ahoy or salty BBQ Lays, it’s light’s out - I’m totally going for them! If I have a shelf filled with crunchy, better-for-you cereal like Kashi Honey Almond Crunch, or chewy Pumpkin Walnut TLC Bars for a sweet treat, I know I can easily reach for those instead.
4. Eat smaller portions of the real thing.
Sometimes it’s fun to go all out and make a crazy, calorie-filled dinner for you and hubby. It’s ok. Life’s short – have ribs! The trick is to just eat less. I always use a small, salad-sized plate instead of a big, entrée-sized plate. It makes portion control so much easier.
Well ladies, hopefully these tips and tricks for satisfying your man's appetite while saving your waistline will help out in your house, as much as it has in mine. Here's to happy, harmonious, and healthy, eating!