People are busier than ever, eating out often and dining on gigantic restaurant portions heavy on calories, saturated fats, trans fats, salt, and sugar. According to Margo Wootan, DSc, nutrition policy director for the Center for Science in the Public Interest, Americans eat out about four meals a week. Plus, women who eat out more than five times a week consume an average of 300 more calories per day. It's not uncommon for a restaurant entrée to weigh in at more than 1,000 calories, and some can top 2,000 calories for a single dish, says Wootan.

The solution is simple: Shop for, prepare, and eat fresh, whole foods at home. That means skipping ersatz selections like processed foods and trans fats; cooking with healthy oils; minimizing or eliminating sugar; shaking on spices instead of salt; and going heavy on vegetables, fruits, beans, nuts, and seeds. Savor the joy of making a real meal in the company of family and friends.


Lisa Turner is a food and nutrition writer. She devours vegetables, olive oil, and the words of Michael Pollan.

A Week of Healthy Meals

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
Breakfast
Tofu Breakfast Burrito*
Breakfast
Yogurt with dried cherries, mixed berries, and chopped almonds
Breakfast
Cherry-Cinnamon Baked Oatmeal
Breakfast
Kefir or yogurt, banana, and blueberry smoothie, topped with crushed walnuts
Breakfast
Omelet Primavera*
Lunch
Mixed greens and baby spinach salad with at least five vegetables, black olives, and chopped walnuts; canned wild alaskan salmon mixed with canola mayonnaise, minced onion, and celery
Lunch
Arugula and White Bean Salad with Rosemary Dressing*
Lunch
Chickpea and Roasted Pepper Salad
Lunch
Warm Mâche Salad with Steamed Vegetables and goat Cheese*
Lunch
havarti and avocado Sandwich*, made with high-fiber bread; mixed greens salad with olives and nuts
Dinner
Mediterranean Chickpea Stew
Dinner
Eggplant Ratatouille with Kale and Beans
Dinner
Spicy Seared Tofu with Kumquat Sauce*
Dinner
Slow-Baked Salmon with Red Wine and honey*
Dinner
Jamaican Jerk Tempeh*
*Recipe available online
Δ Make ahead