Welcome to The Healthy Catholic moms podcast where we make moving and nourishing our bodies the priority, so that we not only fulfill our vocations, but excel in our callings. I’m Brittany Pearson, a Catholic wife, mom, personal trainer, and I’m here to help you build healthy habits that actually fit your life. I am here to teach you how to get the results that you want and maintain the results that you want without spending hours at the gym, or meal prepping all weekend long. I understand I am right here with you getting my workouts done in the nooks and crannies of time, looking up recipes, while nursing babies and trying to prioritize my own health amidst everything else going on. But I have really good news for you, you can get the results you want. In less time without doing hours of cardio and restrictive dieting. I’m going to teach you how to use strength training and eating in a macro balanced way to get you feeling so good and your skin full of energy, and strong to carry out your life. Okay, on this podcast, we’ll delve into how to lose fat in a simple, sustainable way. What your workouts and nutrition should look like during different seasons of life, like during pregnancy and postpartum times. We’ll also discuss healthy quick meals and how to get them on the table make foods that kids will actually want to eat. Mom hacks for making your day run more smoothly and so much more. All the while with continuous encouragement to stay the course and live with discipline. This is a place where we’re striving to steward our bodies. Well, in order to joyfully serve. I am so happy you’re here. Let’s dive in.

Main Episode:
Hello, my friends. How’s it going? I hope you’re having a great day. Thanks so much for being here with me. Special welcome if it’s your first time and welcome back, if you’re here all the time. Thank you. And I appreciate you being here. All right, we are cruising on through July. I hope you’re having a great summer. And today we’re talking about ways to sneak more vegetables into your meal plan. I’ve talked about vegetables a little bit off and on. I’m always talking about vegetables often I’m let’s be honest. But because I do think summer is such a wonderful time to really rely heavily on vegetables to comprise so much of our nutrition because it just feels right. It feels like a lighter leaner time. And, you know, I know personally, my body craves vegetables much more in summer than it does in the cold dark winter days. I seriously just want you can sneak them and we’ll talk about that and winter to soups are great for sneaking and vegetables and all that but you know, so it was a big bowl pasta. That’s a whole nother thing. But we’ve talked about, you know, salads. And well, recently I talked about my favorite salad and wrap combinations. I also mentioned in that episode, like when you’re really salad it out and you want to go switch to roasted vegetables, things like that. So things are always evolving, changing our tastes change our like seasons of life change our kids likes change. And these are things to just file away the things that we talked about today for future use. If not right now, maybe one or two of them you can use right now. But I don’t know about you. I do this all the time where I’ll be like I’m in such a food, right? And then I’ll think back to like, what did I even make before so I feel like I make the same four things. And then maybe I’ll be scrolling through luckily, I do take a lot of pictures of food for this job. And I will to share with you guys and put in recipes and things. But Alabang Oh yeah, I remember when I was really into this, or I’ll just look back hopefully through my recipe book that I have just a homemade binder of things that I like and kind of get reinvigorated. So maybe some of these will be new to you. Maybe they won’t, but maybe it’ll kickstart something of like, oh yeah, I did like that I did used to do that. I do that with my sisters and stuff all the time to like, well, somebody will say, Oh, I made that one thing and I’m like, Oh yeah, that chicken salad. I loved me that forever. And then I go back on that kick. So consider this that episode. This is the episode to do that for you. Okay, without further ado, number one, to work more vegetables into meal plan. Start with keeping the visual in mind of filling half your plate with plant based foods. So I always advise eating you guys know, say with me 8020 80% whole clean foods and 20% treats. So in that 80% like this can be over the span of a day it could be over the span of a week. I tend to think of it more in span of a week my brain just works like that. So okay, of all the calories and all the meals I’m going to have over the week I want most of them to be from whole clean food sources, good quality meats, vegetables, good quality greens, ancient grains, all that stuff. And then 20% could be a KitKat it could be ice cream, it could be whatever. I don’t really care about pet 20% as much because it’s not comprising a whole big part of my diet. It might be clean as dark chocolate and red wine but it might be frozen margarita like it just is what it is. That’s by 20% Okay, and does vary.
I like that and honestly does. But I teach when we’re doing an eight week challenge, or in you know, we’ll talk about it with one on one clients, or in my monthly group, we’ll talk about
trying to have a green or a vegetable present at most meals, and that we want to fill up on vegetables for, in order to eat for volume in order to do a lot of chewing for not a lot of calories. So it’s a simple little suggestion to think about filling about half your plate with vegetables. And then yes, you have protein on there, you have carbs on there, you have fat on there, but having a good chunk of your intake be plants. Now, this is tricky to do at every meal, I will be honest, I don’t do that every single meal. Breakfast is a notoriously hard one to do that. But I do typically do this at dinner like dinner, I usually have a side vegetable for us, like roasted asparagus or something or broccoli, and then also a side salad or also something else or a couple of different like a whole half a plate of roasted vegetables. So try to do that start there, if you just have in mind that you need to get like half of your dinner size plate full. Just you for one meal even you know, then if you have other servings of vegetables in the day, that’s great. Like say I have a shake for breakfast with some frozen spinach that’s about a serving. And then at lunch, maybe I have some carrots and hummus I get another serving of vegetables in. But then at dinner, I get another two to three from just having so much bulk. You don’t have to make it dinner, you could make it a different meal if you want or you could shoot for this with every meal. I just am being realistic and saying some meals are harder to do this with than others. And I think breakfast tends to be a tricky one. But you do you there. Okay, so that’s number one, just start out with that like keeping in mind the visual aspect. Now, to actually get more in how are we getting them in here? Number two is to think about your pastos your salsas, your sauces, a lot of times I think we do think like oh, that’s got to be a side or it’s got to be a main part of the dish. No, it can actually be like a little dish enhancer a little supplement to the dish that actually enhances the taste of the food and helps you get your vegetable count in there. So I like to throw in like I’ve made broccoli as like part of a pesto and use that with pasta.
Other examples like spinach is another one that goes great in a lot of things because you don’t I don’t notice a huge taste with that. So sometimes I will do that in again probably like pastos but salsa Hello, you can jam packed with vegetables. So you know, think about what you could meals you could add these things to or serve as a side or serve as an appetizer, my friend makes a really delicious mango salsa, which obviously has fruit in it as well. Hello, mango. But there’s red onion, and I think red peppers and stuff in there too. It’s so good. I actually need to ask her for the recipe because I’ve thought about it recently. And I’m like, oh, I need to ask her she listens this podcast. So if you hear me my mango salsa making friend please send me the recipe.
But yeah, think of think beyond just the basics here. You can pack it. I know what people do who make like pasta sauce and obviously have tomatoes in there. But they throw other vegetables in there too. I’ve never done that I’ve not messed with my sauce. But you could do that with other. If you’re making a white sauce or creamy sauce, you could probably throw some vegetables in there pretty easily. And you know even mascot which we will talk about number three. This is what I do really regularly. It works really well for us in a way to work in more vegetables is to go 5050 Little 5050 swap. So what I mean here is instead of saying Nope, we’re not having any you know grain noodles in this house. We’re gonna do zucchini noodles and meatballs. Everybody would be starving. Okay, I mentioned earlier to zucchini does technically give you carbs, but it’s there’s not really that satiating component like there would be in tucking into some real pasta. So rather than being like well, I guess we just have to only have pasta. You can go half and half here. Try half zucchini noodles and half regular noodles. There’s something else I do that with.
It’s literally a zucchini. I’m trying to think of what else I do that with. You could do that with like cauliflower, rice and real rice. Or you can use you know, if you’re making pizza, you could make a cauliflower pizza and a regular pizza. I do this a lot. I’ll just buy a cauliflower frozen pizza. Then I’ll make a homemade regular pizza and it’s not like oh a kid pizza an adult pizza. I’ll have one of each. But then I’m like okay, I’ve balanced this out all bets are all grain but it’s all vegetable. So there’s a lot of things you could do that with even chickpea pasta. You could do that with like half and half with the chickpea. Like I said zucchini cauliflower. Another way I’ve mentioned this one because I love chips and salsa as a snack. If somebody tells me to use like carrots and salsa that just makes me angry. That is not an okay substitute. I don’t want to dip celery in my salsa. I want to have tortilla chips. Okay.
So, but here, there’s a compromise to have a whole handful of celery and carrots and then also have a handful of tortilla chips. So you’re just going to be more full. That’s an example of eating from volume, you’re filling up, you’re getting your vegetable content, but you’re still getting the taste of what you really want to do. And in that scenario, I don’t know about you, but I always eat the thing I don’t want to eat first. So I’ll eat my vegetables so I can end with that taste of the tortilla chips that I wanted. And you just have to make yourself do some of these things you might be listening to and be like, that’s silly, Bernie, if I want tortilla chips, I’m just eating it. Well, you gotta make some compromises. Same thing like yes, a bowl of regular pasta is gonna just taste better than zucchini noodles and pasta but we’re trying to you know, go for both here there are times like this absolutely have the whole decadent thing that’s great. Or have the whole lined up thing that’s awesome. But in the balance enables in order to be able to kind of keep that at 20 going it’s sometimes helpful to just kind of combine the two here. All right, two more number four is to I said repurpose but really it’s kind of revisit the vegetables that your family likes slash tolerates. So yes, there is a benefit to eating diverse foods like certain vegetables are going to give you you know, different vitamins and minerals than other vegetables are. Same thing with fruits. So there is a benefit to including apples, but there’s also a benefit to including blueberries. That’s great. That’s ideal. It is ideal. Specifically, I guess, I have to hit something off my microphone. You might hear it. And it might be really annoying, but Okay, there we go. Sorry if it was?
Um, no, I lost my train of thought. I’ll get it back. I promise.
Yep. Not relying on same foods. Okay, what is ideal, especially when talking about vegetables. There it is. Thank you garden Angel, reminding me is to have specifically dark leafy greens, comprising a lot of our servings, if you’re shooting for three to five servings a day, it would actually be great. If three of those came from dark leafy greens that is ideal. It’s even more ideal to switch up those dark leafy greens to not always have romaine lettuce, but to also have spinach and to also have swiss chard and to also have kale, and to include a variety of vegetables now.
In reality, my family, Amy and kale, okay, I can dry. I planted in my garden this year, I was like, I’m going to make everybody like it. Nobody gets excited about it. I told my husband I’m like, but you at least like it when I put it in that zip it just kind of soup that I make. He’s like no, no, I don’t I really don’t like it.
And he like does not complain about any foods. So in that case, like go do you think you know No, vegetables are better than some vegetables? Okay. Yes, perfect scenario. Your family’s eating a lot of dark leafy greens as are you and you’re having a variety, real life. If my kids aren’t going to eat it, I’d rather than eat something. So do they read peppers pretty much every day? Yes, they do. And that’s just fine. I, you know, there, we keep exposing them to different things. I keep making them try it. Kids go through seasons, everybody has different opinions on this. And I’m not here to pontificate on this. I’m just saying don’t be afraid to use the things. Think about yourself. Like, if you’re trying to make yourself eat some vegetable you hate or some fruit you hate you it’s not going to last long. Or you’ll do it for a short while and then probably do nothing like just let them have what they like to have or find a way to try to make them. I will do that sometimes if I need them to eat whatever it is that I’m serving or eating. I’ll say okay, you have to eat this, like this is what I’m serving for dinner. But how can you make it better? Would you like a sauce to go with that? Would you like something to spread on it or Dungannon or whatever? Like how can we jazz this up and kind of give them some power over that too. But again, I don’t freak out over people even with same vegetables every day. At least they’re eating vegetables at this stage. All right. And lastly, this is kind of a kid tip too. So in which you know a lot of us are when we’re considering our meal plan. It includes our family’s steak and vegetables where it’s necessary, where it’s appropriate, where it’s easy, basically where you can like it’s just always a bonus to get in some more vegetables. So places you can use my kids love protein shakes. So most studies most research most protein is fine for kids be consuming if they’re consuming protein from meat and dairy and other things like that. They’re going to be just fine to have most supplements you can consult a doctor and make your own decisions. I’ve always given my kids whey protein from like, I want to say one and a half on like pretty little and they’ve been fine in very small amounts. We’re not making them a huge, you know adult sized
stator much they’re serving of a smoothie at one and a half but they’ll have a couple sips of mine Okay, so they all love it. They just doesn’t really even matter what kind of had plant based ones have headway and they will still usually want to steal sips of it. So now we’ve gotten to the point where if they see me making one I usually just make an extra and I split it among all three of them because everybody wants it. But it’s a great way to get in Frozen bad
Do you throw in frozen spinach? There’s other good stuff going on in there healthy fats. So I feel great about that if they, you know, aren’t getting another raise. But there’s a lot of little creative ways like, you know, zucchini muffins I’ll do some times I actually saw I did not try this. But there was a cookbook I was looking at recently. That was from the I don’t even follow her. So I hadn’t heard this. But I’d heard I think her blog or website is called eating bird food. And she has a book called like, mostly veggies. I think it’s that. And it’s still at my house right now. The only thing I tried to make out of it so far was granola, which has nothing to do with veggies. But the granola recipe was very good. So there’s that but she has a whole section in the back that’s like toddler food or tiny cat food or something like that. And it showed some spinach muffins. And I was like, okay, definitely not, if I tried to give them a green muffin, even if it was St. Patrick’s Day, I don’t think I could get away with that. I don’t think they’re going for it. But there are some cute in different ways. I know, obviously zucchini gets a little bit of a color change but a little more brown, so I can pass it off. Carrots is another one, like you could throw carrots on a lot of stuff. And it usually makes it a little sweeter. They don’t mind it. So get creative with what you’re sneaking into for yourself too. I mean, you’re obviously making it you know, it’s in there. But if you’re a person that doesn’t love vegetables, and I’ve worked with tons of ladies who are like this, you know, find ways to sneak it in on yourself and to make them tolerable. There’s nothing wrong with making them tolerable. And also in that vein, this is not a tip. This is a little bonus here, I am fine with additions. Like, sometimes when I work with people, they’ll say like I hate vegetables. Okay, how are you trying to eat them? Oh, I just tried to eat raw broccoli. Okay, I wouldn’t eat raw broccoli either. So, find ways I would eat roasted broccoli, with some avocado oil and some sea salt. And then I melt a little butter and drizzle it on top of some parmesan cheese like That’s delicious. So yes, they have just added calories. Yes, that’s just added some fat calories are there to be consumed, like food is there to be eaten. And we, I think are just missing out a lot of beauty to the senses and enjoyment and pleasure of the like of foods that we could be having. Because we’re just trying to like bare bones it. So maybe that’s a little area you could grow is challenging yourself a little bit in the kitchen to get a little more creative with how you present your meals in general or your foods. And it’s a game changer. I know just for me again, this does add calories and you could argue unnecessary ones. But I’m very often serving like seared chicken or grilled chicken or I don’t really ever make big chicken because I don’t like it but usually seared or grilled. And then sometimes I take it a step further. And I just coat the chicken and some panco or some bread crumbs or something and I you know, fry it up first in like an olive oil or an avocado oil, then I bake the rest of it off or I just do it on the stovetop. Everybody goes crazy. Like everybody loves breaded chicken and sometimes I will make like a little lemon juice thing that I’ll put on top of parmesan, it has just elevated it so much by that tiny step. So that’s another way like make yourself like um, and not into like force yourself to eat raw broccoli way but more so familiarize yourself with ways to make it more appealing for yourself and for others. All right. Okay, and if you have great tips on that, I’d love to hear him I would love to share it actually in a future podcast episode. So let me know on Instagram or email me if you have some fun ways that you like to eat vegetables as well. I also want to ask you one more thing before I go. If you have not read it in review the podcast and you have a moment I would appreciate it I read every single review. It brings me so much joy and helps get the message out to others and it will just be very much appreciated. So wherever you listen, if you will leave either star rating or that and a written review if you can. Thank you in advance. All right, ladies, next episode we are talking about tips for staying the course. So try to keep yourself from you know, yo yoing or just dropping the ball together things that can help you stay motivated, stay on course. Alright, looking forward to that conversation and until then…

Time stamps:

  • Welcome to the podcast. 0:02

    • Welcome to the healthy catholic moms podcast.

    • Brittany introduces herself and the podcast.

  • How to sneak more vegetables into your meal plan in summer. 1:58

    • How to sneak more vegetables into your meal plan.

    • Summer is a wonderful time for vegetables.

  • Filling half your plate with plant based foods. 4:06

    • Filling half of a plate with plant-based foods.

    • Having a green or a vegetable at most meals.

  • How to get more vegetables in your dishes. 6:45

    • How to get more vegetables in the house.

    • How to pack in more vegetables.

  • Zucchini Noodles and Meatballs. 8:42

    • Half and half zucchini noodles and half regular noodles.

    • Cauliflower pizza and tortilla chips.

  • What’s ideal for your family? 10:47

    • Number four, repurpose vegetables that family likes/tolerates.

    • Dark leafy greens.

  • If my kids aren’t going to eat it, I’d rather eat something else. 12:49

    • Kids go through seasons. Don’t be afraid to try new things.

    • Kids love protein shakes.

  • Get creative with what you’re sneaking in. 14:58

    • Creative ways to sneak in healthy fats.

    • Get creative with what you sneak in.

  • Challenge yourself in the kitchen to get a little more creative with your meals. 16:36

    • Challenging yourself in the kitchen to get more creative.

    • Read every review.

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