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EXOTEC Posts: 3,327
1/17/14 11:52 A

I guess I eat the same foods regularly. Maybe not daily, but I have favorite go-to recipes that I use over and over. Occasionally I'll try a new one... but my tastes are such that the current crop of flavors really aren't appealing to me. In fact, many of them are distinctly UNappealing. I'm not eager to try something out, spend money on the ingredients, and find out I can't stomach it. I already know what I love. Why fiddle with that?

OTOH, I do know the flavor profiles I enjoy. I will also experiment with other cooking *methods*, even if not so much the ingredients.
I like French herbs, garlic, onion, leeks, buttery sauces, wines (white/blush/rose) and limited amounts of other cooking liquors (sherry, brandy, vermouth), chicken, beef, lamb, fish... pork in moderation only because modern pork is so lean as to be pretty much tasteless, unless I do a big chunk in the slow cooker. I like things in the slow cooker... but I'm not likely to slather it with curry or salsa or some new spicy flavors. I just know better.
Sometimes, instead of baking or roasting, I'll poach something.
While I love more "classic" flavors, I am also a Southern girl... and I willingly admit to a healthy (?) appreciation of well-made fried chicken or country-fried (cubed) steak in milk gravy. We rarely eat such things - maybe once or twice a year. But I know I like those, still.
I love Chinese, and will make attempts at some of our favorites, like beef stir-fry with veggies, or cashew (or other nut) chicken, pork, or shrimp. I love mushroom stir-fries, mostly mushrooms and veggies with shreds and bits of meat.
I love broiled or grilled meats. We have a wonderful rotisserie cooker and a countertop grill which are in use quite frequently. The rotisserie has a basket where I can put veggies or fish filets with a rub (or not) and have delicious and tender meals. You haven't lived until you've done your roasted veggies in a rotisserie basket, either! LOL

I don't know whether all this constitutes "same foods every day" or not. I have a "same" list of things I go to over and over... and the list is large enough that I don't get bored with it. I also have come to the point now that I'm unable to eat the volume of "whole meals" that I used to be able to consume. What I do make lasts a lot longer than it used to!

I think you just have to develop a favorite collection and work it.
Keep experimenting!

Edited by: EXOTEC at: 1/17/2014 (11:54)
RIET69 SparkPoints: (47,087)
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1/17/14 10:46 A

I eat the same foods every day for breakfast. I eat the same food for a week for lunch. and I vary dinner. This helps me in tracking and I don't ever mind eating the same thing if I like it enough.

EMPRESSAMQ Posts: 5,077
1/17/14 9:06 A

I also tend to eat the same foods day after day, but I'm definitely not bored with it.

I really like sticking to the same old things lol.

SLIMMERKIWI SparkPoints: (243,801)
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1/16/14 10:27 P

It sounds like you could be starting to lose interest in what you eat...... bored??

I mostly eat pretty much the same things every day, but do eat a huge variety, altho' mainly with fruit/veges. To counter the 'same old, same old' thing, I use different spices/herbs etc. I might make a chicken casserole. It might have all the same base veges, but one lot might have some dried apricots (the stronger flavoured cooking ones) and maybe some chickpeas, whereas another meal might have plenty of mushrooms, and yet another might have a slight hit of chilli with some beans.

That applies to all of my meat. I bulk cook casseroles/stir-fries, and decide when I go to do it whether it is going to have Moroccan, Italian, Greek, Mexican, Tropical, etc. leanings. This provides a lot of variety an keeps the interest there. My veges are mostly the same, but once again, I eat a variety and always ensure I have a rainbow of colour on my plate. I buy seasonal, but also sometimes frozen when on special for back-up.

The bulk cooking not only provides a lot of variation (freeze in single-serve containers) but it also helps to keep the food bill down (one lot of gas/power, and cleaning up), and this way also means that your fiance can eat what HE wants, and you select what you want.


RENATARUNS SparkPoints: (4,367)
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1/16/14 3:16 P

There's nothign wrong with it; I'd guess that consistency is a virtue when it comes to weight loss and maintenance, honestly, because it's less to think about. (No "I don't know what to cook, so let's have take-out" moments, for instance.) If you're getting your needed nutrients, I don't think there's any health reason to vary more than you already are. If you're bored, that's something else of course. Branch out, go wild.

Edit:And yeah, you can freeze fruit -- they have nice berries and peaches and stuff in the freezer section these days. Texture may be odd, but that doesn't matter mashed into yogurt and so on. As has been said, nutritional value is sometimes actually higher than fresh and not to be worried about.

Edited by: RENATARUNS at: 1/16/2014 (15:19)
LEC358 SparkPoints: (11,135)
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1/16/14 2:28 P

Frozen fruits and vegetables can be cheaper than fresh depending on the season. Also, since produce is frozen quickly after being picked rather than sitting on a truck and a shelf for a couple of days, frozen produce tends to be higher in nutritional value than the fresh produce [if the produce isn't local].

NSKYLINE115 SparkPoints: (50,453)
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1/16/14 1:33 P

Hmmm I was thinking about frozer fruits like berries you can buy at the grocery store?
I didnt know that about over cooking veggies, I like my veggies mushy as well! I've been eating alot of veggies lately, I dont want them going bad so I make them in big batches and eat them through the week

RUSSELL_40 Posts: 16,826
1/16/14 1:18 P

Not sure you can freeze fruits, but they sell veggies frozen. For veggies, I would worry about overcooking some of them, which might leech some nutrients into the fluid they are cooked in.

Tomatoes are supposed to be cooked well, to release the lycopene.( good for us, I'm told ), but things like peas, green beans etc., you might want to steam, or cook lightly. More vegetables is usually a good thing. I try to eat 10 servings a day, since I prefer to cook my vegetables till mushy. Hopefully it is enough.

The freezer can be a huge help. Some people batch cook, and just freeze the meals, so when they are short on time, they just microwave it.

NSKYLINE115 SparkPoints: (50,453)
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1/16/14 12:59 P

Thanks for the tips everyone! This is my first full week here so i'm still trying to figure out what works and how to balance the meals well. Since I shop for my fiance as well, I want to make sure he's eating what he likes as well, it wouldnt be fair to put him on my mean plan when he's not even doing SparkPeople. I will deff take into consideration all your tips =)
Does freezing veggies/fruits take away nutritional value? It sounds like the freezer is gonna be a great resource for not wasting food

LILYDAYDREAM SparkPoints: (1,859)
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1/16/14 12:15 P

I usually eat the same for breakfast and lunch every day, but try to mix it up for dinner. Before I go shopping I search for a recipe for a food I LOVE but a healthy version of it. So far this week we have had turkey meatloaf, lean ground beef hamburgers and I even put it on an arnolds sandwich thin for less calories, chicken with mushroom sauce, and beef and broccoli except instead of beef I used sliced pork loin. Even my kids have been loving the meals and they all come out to 500 cals or less for an entire meal with veggies or salad.

RABBLE-RABBLE SparkPoints: (11,507)
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1/16/14 11:49 A

During the week, I tend to have mostly the same foods for most meals. Oatmeal berries and protein powder before hitting the gym when I first get up, greek yogurt and fruit post workout, I make a California Turkey sandwich to take for lunch, baggie of mixed veggies (red peppers, snap peas, celery, etc.) for a snack, cottage cheese and triscuit crackers for another snack with an apple and/or banana thrown in some time during the day.

Only meal that varies is dinner (eaten with the family at home).

Weekends vary a bit more since I'm home with the family.

RUSSELL_40 Posts: 16,826
1/16/14 11:42 A

I tend to eat the same meals every day.. for about 4.5 years now. Chicken and vegetables for lunch, and dinner. I change the vegetables some, but its peas, tomatoes, and green beans mostly, cooked in olive oil.

The thing is, I love this dish. When I started trying to eat healthy, I made dishes that would make a dietitian weep with joy. Lean chicken breast, plain brown rice, and steamed vegetables. Incredibly healthy!

Too bad it tasted like poo. I hated it, and quit.

I have switched to low carb, so I nixed the rice, and added some olive oil, and threw the vegetables into the oil too. I do use spices to add more flavor, but avoid any sauces or marinades. You are probably okay with these, but remember that they have calories, and sodium. Track sauces, and marinades carefully. Due to liquidity, they are easy to underestimate.

The difference with my new menu is that I love the taste. Changing from peas and tomatoes, to mushrooms and tomatoes is enough change. I eat chicken and veggies 13 times a week, and 1 chili on Sunday afternoon. Mushroom omelettes 365 days a year for breakfast.

When I used to binge at Taco Bell, I ate bean burritos, Nachos Bellgrandes, and soft tacos. 75 items on the menu, and I ate 3-4 of them. Not once did I think it was boring, because it was delicious. Not edible... AWESOMELY delicious. I wasn't concerned about variety then, so why should we feel the need to have more variety now?

Work on making the dishes a bit more appealing. Spices, or small changes to a dish, like changing from pasta to rice, can make it seem like a whole new dish. Most of us don't have 30 meals that we use. We all tend to eat the same meals, just find a way to add a twist to them. Don't feel the need to have more variety, but make enough changes that you don't feel blah about the dishes.

POPSECRET SparkPoints: (81,954)
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1/16/14 11:18 A

I do this too! I usually always eat the same thing for breakfast and first snack (greek yogurt and coffee, then a hard boiled egg). For lunches I usually make one BIG thing (usually a soup or casserole, or salad) and portion it out to last all week. Then for dinner I have whatever's quickest and easiest...usually an omlette, pasta or protein shake.

I guess it depends on what you're eating for the same 3 meals, but in general I don't think it's unhealty as long as you're getting your veggies, protein, etc.

NIRERIN Posts: 14,234
1/16/14 8:59 A

the only issue i see is that you're blah on the foods by the end of the week. because it sounds like you eat the same five meals for a week, then switch to a new five meals the next week and a third set the week after, which means that you're overall getting a variety if not so much day to day. which is fine. but the blahs are something to worry about.
one of the keys to using up and not getting bored is not fully making meals. and what i mean by that is say you start making mashed potatoes. and you realize you have a huge pot of chopped potatoes boiling away on the stove. instead of making the whole thing into mashed potatoes, about halfway through the cook time, take out about half of the potatoes, cool them and pop them in the fridge so that you can make pot pie and/or tortilla and or a burrito bowl with them. then use the rest for mashed potatoes. this way you're using up the ingredients, but not all in one dish. so when you start tossing all the veggies in to cook for pot pie, hold off on the seasoning and sauce until you reserve some of the cooked veggies to be added to curry and served over rice. or added to salsa and served in a burrito. or to just add rosemary, garlic and a little butter to just be a side. or to add soy sauce and ginger to.
i don't know if you have a take out burrito/taco place or pan asian place near you, but those menus are great places to look for inspiration for this sort of thing. my favorite taco burrito place is called tijuana flats and they basically have shrimp, beef, black beans, refried beans, chicken and pork as your protein choices and they put them into flautas, tacos, burritos, taco salad, enchiladas, chimichangas, quesadillas, nachos and tostadas. all of those dishes work with some combination of corn tortillas, flour tortillas, lettuce, cheese, black olive, onion, salsa, jalapeno, and tomatoes. so they have less than 20 ingredients overall to make all those different meals with in different ways.
that's what you need to do too. instead of using the whole zucchini in pasta primavera, use half the zucchini in the primavera and the other half with mushrooms in an omelet. and curry is a godsend for those wanting to use up all the leftover veggies in the fridge. so is lasagna. and the best part is that both of those dishes freeze very well if you need to make a huge batch, so then you can have preportioned frozen dinners for another week and you don't have to eat everything right then.

NSKYLINE115 SparkPoints: (50,453)
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1/16/14 8:52 A

Oohhh good idea with the spices and marinades! I'l also keep an eye out on the nutrition tracker at the end of the day when it generates the report. Maybe I should buy in smaller bulk? I am shopping for both my fiance and I but he doesnt follow a SparkPeople plan so it gets kinda tricky what he eats in the house.

SPARK_COACH_JEN Posts: 65,435
1/16/14 8:31 A

As long as you're getting all of the calories and nutrients you need daily, it's okay to eat a lot of the same foods. When you track your foods in your nutrition tracker, you'll be able to see how you're doing relative to those recommended nutrient ranges. if you're falling short in things (like iron or fiber, for example), then you'll know you probably need to make some tweaks to your diet.

Coach Jen

LEC358 SparkPoints: (11,135)
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1/16/14 8:22 A

Spices and marinades are your friends. For example, with the right spices and sauces I can take chicken, beans, rice, and assorted vegetables to a Chinese flavor, Italian flavor, Greek flavor, etc. Most of the time I batch cook some kind of casserole or stir fry and eat that for the week but another way to do it is to cook a big batch of chicken, rice, and beans at the beginning of the week and then add different spices and vegetables each day so it tastes different.

NSKYLINE115 SparkPoints: (50,453)
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Posts: 808
1/16/14 8:04 A

Good morning,
I realize when I go grocery shopping, I buy alot of different foods, but when I cook and put everything together I end up eating almost the same 5 meals throughout the week. For example this week i've had alot of mashed potatoes/salmon/chicken/beans/wild rice/bagel/egg... and then the snacks. But for my main meals I try to use it all up so nothing goes to waste, but since we portion food out I end up stretching it all week (Especially the mashed potatoes omg I made too much!!!) Is that unhealthy nutrition wise? Eat in moderations right? I am doing that, but eating almost the same thing everyday and eventually it becomes blah.

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