100 lb. Club - variety vs. predictability




View Full Version : variety vs. predictability


matt_H
06-24-2010, 01:45 PM
I don't think anybody else could eat what I eat and not go insane -- most days I eat the exact same thing.

Breakfast = wheat bagel with strawberry jelly [in total around 425-50 calories].

Lunch = either small turkey or roast beef sub on wheat bread (with all the veggies, hots, and mustard) and a bag of baked lays chips. [~500 calories].

Dinner = Usually a middle eastern shwarma wrap and fruit or a lean burrito. [anywhere from 700 - 1000 calories].

I try to stay under 2000 calories a day without snacking.

Usually on Sunday I have a big brunch meal that covers the bulk of my calories for that day and then I try to eat a smaller healthy meal (schwarma wrap, etc.).

I find when I try to mix my diet up and eat different things, that I end up hungry or craving something else. This simplicity seems to work for me and I honestly love the foods I eat and don't get bored.

I'm just curious if other people find eating the same things helpful to your weight loss efforts? I've always heard the other way around that people need to eat lots of different things, but that just doesn't work for me.


cfmama
06-24-2010, 01:58 PM
You know what Matt... I am a lover of simplicity as well.

Breakfast is ALWAYS oatmeal and fruit or small bagel with pb and a banana
Lunch is always either tuna on wasa with veggies and dip or a large garden salad with chicken and dressing
Afternoon snack is almost always fruits, yogurt and peanut butter
Dinner is where I change it up every night but it's always around 500 calories...

it works for me. Clearly!

mandalinn82
06-24-2010, 02:08 PM
I go on breakfast jags and eat the same thing for breakfast 2-3 weeks in a row. My snacks are often the same for weeks at a time. I do change up dinners within a narrow calorie range, and eat my dinner leftovers for lunch the next day, so those do change, but breakfast and snacks don't have a lot of variety.


Onederchic
06-24-2010, 02:08 PM
Count me in. My eating is simple and the same day after day and I enjoy it that way :D

calluna
06-24-2010, 02:11 PM
I'm about like mandalinn -

TJFitnessDiva
06-24-2010, 02:16 PM
My breakfast & lunch are pretty much the same :) If I want something different then I have it but I like those two meals to be no-brainers lol On the weekends my husband loves to cook (if he's home & not traveling for work) and that's when we experiment with new stuff :D

paris81
06-24-2010, 02:19 PM
I always eat the same thing for breakfast (oatmeal and soy bacon--sometimes I'll add fruit). Then I have a few different lunch options, but not many. So the first two meals of my day are pretty regular, because it's easier that way!

For dinner though, I like to mix it up a bit more. I want to try to make at least one new dinner dish a week (although I've been bad with that). I need different stuff with dinner, or I'd get bored.

As usual, to each his or her own! (I just had a pretty telling typo--I wrote "eat" instead of "each"!)

time2lose
06-24-2010, 02:20 PM
I eat the same breakfast and lunch everyday with slight change. My lunch includes fruit everyday but I vary the fruit. I have more variety with dinner. I am very happy to eat this way. When I was eating high calorie foods, I did the same thing but just used high calorie fat laden foods.

Slashnl
06-24-2010, 02:25 PM
I'm into simplicity, too. Same thing for breakfast and lunch (usually!), and then dinner is different every night. But even with dinner, we have a lot of the same things week in and week out. It's just easier that way!

matt_H
06-24-2010, 02:27 PM
As usual, to each his or her own! (I just had a pretty telling typo--I wrote "eat" instead of "each"!)


Just say no to cannibalism ;)

ORSewmama
06-24-2010, 03:23 PM
I guess I'm into simplicity as well. For breakfast, I have two things that I choose from, and pretty much only those two things - either a bowl of oatmeal or a whole grain eng muffin with a scrambled egg and two slices of canadian bacon. For lunch, I either have black beans, onions, peppers and sour cream in a wheat tortilla; or whole grain english muffin with peanut butter and some fruits and veggies.

Dinner, I do change it up - but even at that, DH and I trade off nights cooking, and each have maybe 10 dishes we cycle through, so there's no surprises there.

I do snack in the afternoons, and that is where I get my variety in :) I always have a fruit or veggie and something else - yogurt, fiber one bar, nuts, maybe chocolate. My snack is the most exciting part of the day, and always under 250-300 cals!

Terre
06-24-2010, 03:48 PM
My food is usually the same.
Breakfast: eggbeaters with lean ham and salsa
lunch: salad with fat free turkey, cucumbers, tomatoes, bell peppers, ff itailan
dinner: we eat usually the same 10-15 meals

snacks: fruit, steamed broccoli, popcorn
calories average 1200-1300 daily

Shmead
06-24-2010, 04:00 PM
I may be the most boring of all of you. I eat



chicken breast w/ mustard or tomato sauce
cottage cheese and wheat bran (with cinnamon and equal)
popcorn
chickpeas w/ tomato sauce
broccoli
cauliflower
carrots
triscuits
strawberries
McD's softserve cone (2/week)
Hershey kisses (3/night)
Chipotle bowl, very lean (1-2/month)


That is seriously it. I have one fancy meal a month besides that, and it varies.

You know what, though? I did this before, too. Except the list was more like:


Pizza rolls
canned ravioli
McD's #2 Meal
Tortillas
White bread
Cheddar cheese
Pasta
Hot dogs


So it seems to be my basic personality!

Glory87
06-24-2010, 04:10 PM
I eat the same stuff, I never seem to get tired of it.

B - either yogurt/fruit OR oatmeal/apple butter - 200 calories for either. Very rarely I have whole grain toast, one slice with natural peanut butter and one slice with jam (maybe 1-2 times per month?)

L - almost always a salad with protein. I have about 6 favorite salads I rotate through and they are all so yummy. I never get tired of one of my salads (BBQ, asian chicken, taco salad, grilled chicken/goat cheese, meditteranean, ham with dijon dressing)

S - my favorite snacks - string cheese, non fat latte, fruit (grapes, tangelo, mango, cherries, watermelon)

D - I have about 10 favorite dinners I cycle through, all around 500 calories.

On the weekends, we sometimes have Chipotle or Panera for lunch. I also like to go to Stir Fresh for dinner, or Souplanation.

When I'm maintaining, I have one nice meal per week in a restaurant. Wine, split a dessert, etc.

It works for me.

Vladadog
06-24-2010, 04:44 PM
I'm pretty happy eating the same thing day after day. I've always made soups or casseroles that would last for a week or so. Now I just make healthier things that also last a while. I pretty much always have yogurt for breakfast and then lunch and dinner are some variation of a sandwich, salad, leftovers. Snacks are either fruit or veggies and hummus. I eat what I like, I like what I eat, I don't see any reason to change it up.

WarMaiden
06-24-2010, 04:51 PM
I eat mostly the same stuff day to day. One oddity about the way I eat, however, is that I like to eat small amounts of a great number of items, rather than large amounts of a smaller number of items. When I look at my food list for any given day it's about a mile long, with only the rare repeats. Today, for example, I'm going to eat 22 different foods. So that's how I get variety in while eating the same stuff constantly, heh. I also have a special Friday night dinner which always varies. This week it's Indian food, yay! And I eat different breakfasts on the weekends than during the week.

mingle
06-24-2010, 04:56 PM
I eat basically the same thing every day, as well, & love the predictability of it! Breakfast is 1 whole hard boiled egg, 1 hard boiled egg white, & a banana (180 cal). Lunch is a wrap made with lean lunch meat, shredded lettuce, cucumbers, & tomato, along with some fresh veggies of some sort & 2 T. of hummus, an apple, & a yogurt (about 410-450 cal.). And supper, although it varies more than my breakfasts & lunch, is always one of about the same 5 things for about 700 cal. I usually have an evening snack for about 100-150 cal. (either a skinny cow ice cream bar or a sugar free pudding cup).

I find "same-ness" of it all helps keep me grounded.

JustBeckyV
06-24-2010, 05:07 PM
Breakfast usually the same and lunch a bit of a variety but still mostly a rotation of the same things. Dinner - usually different!

CanadianCutie
06-24-2010, 05:22 PM
I have a pretty predictable meal plan. But I allow for treats that I really love so it's all good. Also my meal plans change when I'm down visiting my boyfriend, from when I'm at home.

Karen925
06-24-2010, 06:14 PM
(BBQ, asian chicken,)


Do you have a recipe of these proteins? It does sound very good.

GirlyGirlSebas
06-24-2010, 06:45 PM
I eat the same things every day. This kind of structure just works so well for me.

Breakfast - Smoothie of whey protein powder, no-sugar added soy milk, 1 banana and ground flax seed
Lunch - Salad with mixed spring greens, tomatoes, bell pepper,edamame and light three cheese ranch dressing
Dinner - Veggie burger, 2 cups of steamed veggies topped with a sprinkle of parmesan
Snacks - Microwaved sweet potato with smart balance, cottage cheese with 1TBS of fruit only spread, some days I have apple slices with natural peanut butter.

So far, I've found my food to be satisfying and delicious. I do have some Bok Choy and red cabbage in the fridge to cook up with veggie burger one evening.

rockinrobin
06-24-2010, 07:40 PM
I have been eating some of the same stuff for years now, years and have no plans to change. I don't find it boring, in fact I look forward to it. My breakfast is always the same (yogurt and fiber one, the flavors change). My lunch is always the same - an ENORMOUS salad - but some of the ingredients do vary from time to time.. My snacks are pretty much the same too. Dinners are a bit more varied, especially on the weekend, but that's more for my family than for me.

If it ain't broken, don't fix it...

This works well for me. I've found food that I love and have no problem repeating it again and again.

I have read many times that people that limit there choices are thinner and healthier. I think I remember Dr. Oz saying this. It makes perfect sense. 90 percent or better of what's out there in the world is food I avoid, due to it's unhealthy and/or caloric contents.

mthrgoos68
06-24-2010, 08:07 PM
Me too! Same exact meals every day. If I vary it, I feel like I've missed out on something by not having my usual. Such creatures of habit we are!!

Desert Agave
06-24-2010, 08:44 PM
I also eat the same things day after day. My breakfast, snacks, and lunch are exactly the same every day. For dinner I have around 10 things I rotate, but really I have 3 of those ten things about 5 or 6 days out of the week.

I find it helps me to know exactly what I'm going to be eating for each meal because it means I don't have to think about food very much. In the past I drove myself crazy trying to come up with new meals that fit into a certain nutritional profile.

Arctic Mama
06-24-2010, 09:53 PM
I would LOVE to eat the same thing every day, that is how my nature is, but I have a huge tendency toward food sensitivities if I eat the same foods multiple days in a row. I actually begin to get migraines, runny noses, an itchy mouth and fatigue from too much oatmeal, eggs, almonds, etc etc.

So unfortunately I can't just eat my favorite things day in and day out, I have to have rotating menus so I don't begin to react to any one food. It's SUPER annoying!

TXMary2
06-24-2010, 10:16 PM
I am impressed. I go through phases and will eat something over and over and then tire of it.

Glory87
06-25-2010, 02:05 AM
Do you have a recipe of these proteins? It does sound very good.

I had posted them before, so I just had to search for it!

I love warmed up protein on salad - so all the protein is heated (except for the fake crab and the ham). I'm lucky enough to have a frig and a microwave at work, so it's easy to chill/nuke to get my lunch just how I like it. With so many salad options, I never get tired of them.

I've been on a ham kick lately, not sure why!

The Classic
Spinach leaves
Grilled chicken breast
cup dried cranberries (when pomegranate seeds are cheap at Trader Joe's, I use them instead)
cup nuts (pepitas or almonds, usually)
Grape tomatoes
Carrot shreddies
Red pepper chunks
Red onion
Gingerly Vinaigrette dressing

Asian (this also makes an amazing wrap)
Crisp romaine
Grilled chicken breast (shrimp is also good)
Mandarin oranges
Sliced, water chestnuts
Edamame
Grape tomatoes
Broccoli slaw
Small handful of cashew bits/pieces
Trader Joe’s Spicy Asian Vinaigrette
Crunchy salad wonton toppers (just a few, for crunch)

BBQ Chicken
Spinach
Roasted corn
A few black beans
Chopped roma tomato
Red onion
Carrot shreddies
Chopped avocado (how much – if any – depending on calories for the day)
Grilled chicken (heated in the oven with Amy’s organic bbq sauce as the dressing)
Sprinkle of low fat cheddar, black olives (but I usually leave this out)
A little fat free Ranch
a few tortilla strips for crunch

Mediterranean - makes 4 servings, not 5, so I pick this if I know I have an alternate lunch one day per work week (like out to lunch with a friend)
Crisp romaine
Broccoli slaw
Red onion
Sliced kalamata olive
Pepperocini
Carrot shreddies
Chopped roma tomato
Heated, crumbled spicy veggie burger
Trader Joe’s tzaziki (1/4 of container) for dressing

Blackened Salmon with goat cheese
Blackened salmon (I usually make an extra at dinner, then split it between 2 salads - if I don't have salmon, I just use chicken)
Green leaf lettuce
Carrot shreddies
Chopped red cabbage
grape tomatoes
goat cheese (about 50 calories)
Crunchy onions

Taco Salad
Seasoned ground turkey (when I make tacos for dinner, I make extra for salads)
Romaine
Pico De Gallo
Chopped red cabbage
Carrot shreddies
a few tortilla strips for crunch
Tomatilla salsa for dressing

Springtime Salad
Green leaf
Peas (or snow peas)
Imitation crab
Carrot shreddies
Grape tomatoes
Lite poppy seed dressing

Ham Salad
Crisp romaine
Grape tomatoes
Carrot shreddies
Chopped red cabbage
Diced ham
Crispy spicy wontons
Ken's Steakhouse lite dijon

Beverlyjoy
06-25-2010, 08:52 AM
I have alot of similarity in my choices for lunch and breakfast. Dinner changes alot more when DH is home.

Everyone does it differently. I've found in this weight loss life - 'one size' does not fit all. I have a friend who eats virtually the same menu - just as you do. I have another weight loss friend who 'loves to cook'. Everyday is a new recipe. Both of these people are very successful in there weightloss story.

Tai
06-25-2010, 01:35 PM
I really love the foods I eat and have the same things over and over again. I never seem to get tired of them. It's good to know I'm not the only person who doesn't crave a lot of variety!

lovemyboy
06-25-2010, 04:26 PM
I eat eggs and turkey bacon for breakfast every day. For lunch I eat a big old salad with warm protein on top. Dinner is where I play. I make a different dinner every night. For beakfast I HAVE to be consistent, mostly because I'm not a morning person and function better on auto pilot.

duckyyellowfeet
06-25-2010, 04:52 PM
See, I need choices. I can eat the same thing for weeks, yes...and then, the thought of it makes me a little sick. Like actually nauseated. I used to love polenta toasted with red sauce and a little cheese on top. Typing that out make me feel sick. urgh.

So i need three or four breakfast options and a handful of lunch/dinner choices. I mix them up, depending on what I feel like in that day. I pretty much eat the same thing over and over but I can't just wake up and have oatmeal every single day.

ubergirl
06-25-2010, 11:22 PM
Learning to eat "boring" was one of the most important finds for me.

I eat the same breakfast every single day, I eat fish or chicken with several cooked veggies for dinner and save the leftovers for lunch.

About the most exciting thing change is yogurt flavor or brand.

Snacks: 1 apple, 1 reduced fat cheese stick, 1 4oz yogurt

I do eat lots of different veggies and I also eat a variety of fresh fruit.

I think food just excites me too much. I enjoy the food I eat, but as Matt said, too much variety makes me get more interested/obsessed and more likely to crave.

rakel
06-27-2010, 02:11 AM
I go through phases where I eat the same things all of the time, and then I get tired of that and get on something else. Eventually it comes to a full circle and I'll get back on a certain thing after enough time has passed. I find it easy to kind of "default" to something that you know works with your plan, is simple to make, and simple to log. I find that it helps me. But every once in awhile I'll just get sick of all the same thing and look for something new.

Karen925
06-29-2010, 07:04 PM
I had posted them before, so I just had to search for it!

I love warmed up protein on salad - so all the protein is heated (except for the fake crab and the ham). I'm lucky enough to have a frig and a microwave at work, so it's easy to chill/nuke to get my lunch just how I like it. With so many salad options, I never get tired of them.

I've been on a ham kick lately, not sure why!

The Classic
Spinach leaves
Grilled chicken breast
cup dried cranberries (when pomegranate seeds are cheap at Trader Joe's, I use them instead)
cup nuts (pepitas or almonds, usually)
Grape tomatoes
Carrot shreddies
Red pepper chunks
Red onion
Gingerly Vinaigrette dressing

Asian (this also makes an amazing wrap)
Crisp romaine
Grilled chicken breast (shrimp is also good)
Mandarin oranges
Sliced, water chestnuts
Edamame
Grape tomatoes
Broccoli slaw
Small handful of cashew bits/pieces
Trader Joes Spicy Asian Vinaigrette
Crunchy salad wonton toppers (just a few, for crunch)

BBQ Chicken
Spinach
Roasted corn
A few black beans
Chopped roma tomato
Red onion
Carrot shreddies
Chopped avocado (how much if any depending on calories for the day)
Grilled chicken (heated in the oven with Amys organic bbq sauce as the dressing)
Sprinkle of low fat cheddar, black olives (but I usually leave this out)
A little fat free Ranch
a few tortilla strips for crunch

Mediterranean - makes 4 servings, not 5, so I pick this if I know I have an alternate lunch one day per work week (like out to lunch with a friend)
Crisp romaine
Broccoli slaw
Red onion
Sliced kalamata olive
Pepperocini
Carrot shreddies
Chopped roma tomato
Heated, crumbled spicy veggie burger
Trader Joes tzaziki (1/4 of container) for dressing

Blackened Salmon with goat cheese
Blackened salmon (I usually make an extra at dinner, then split it between 2 salads - if I don't have salmon, I just use chicken)
Green leaf lettuce
Carrot shreddies
Chopped red cabbage
grape tomatoes
goat cheese (about 50 calories)
Crunchy onions

Taco Salad
Seasoned ground turkey (when I make tacos for dinner, I make extra for salads)
Romaine
Pico De Gallo
Chopped red cabbage
Carrot shreddies
a few tortilla strips for crunch
Tomatilla salsa for dressing

Springtime Salad
Green leaf
Peas (or snow peas)
Imitation crab
Carrot shreddies
Grape tomatoes
Lite poppy seed dressing

Ham Salad
Crisp romaine
Grape tomatoes
Carrot shreddies
Chopped red cabbage
Diced ham
Crispy spicy wontons
Ken's Steakhouse lite dijon
I just got back to my computer. Wow, what a gift of time!

Thank you so much for posting. I am making up my travel menu lists for our great western vacation (3 weeks/4,000 miles). I have found I really like salad and protein for lunch. I also lost another 1.2#. I was starting to worry about getting bored but then I think, like RR said, why fix it if it ain't broke. I think I will fix up some of these, freeze, then thaw as needed.

Trazey34
06-30-2010, 05:07 PM
I'm pretty boring too, I eat the same 10-15 things all the time I'm sure! I like to try new things, I just like my routine ;) The way I look at it -- I NEVER got tired of Double Quarter Pounder with cheese AND a Dairy Queen Blizzard LOL but now it's grilled chicken on a ginormous salad :) YUM!