Zone Diet Meal Planning vs Grocery Shopping… Some thoughts over meat consumption
Have you ever thought on how much meat you should consume on a weekly basis and how to optimize costs, variation, flavour and still eat exactly perfect ammout without any waste? So here are some answers you have been searching for…
Let’s talk about meat eating…
In between blog posts and planning our meals in order to stay in the zone, we were brought to some questions…
- How much meat should we buy… per week? Or per month? Or when I go to butcher or supermarket…
- How many packages should we freeze? Is there an optimal time of the week when I should unfreeze them?
- What is easier, to cook them all equally (and then get all same – and read here, BIT BORING, meal forever)? Or how can we optimize flavour and variety in order to really get pleasure and satisfaction out of food?
- How to take the most of variation, and still NEVER WASTE, but ALSO NOT OVER EAT?
- Am I overspending with meat? How much in the month should I separate to optimizely buy meat?
Here, it doesn’t really matter which diet you follow, if it is the Zone diet, the Paleo, Keto, Mediterranean, or even some Japanese oriented diet.
We were in need to see THE CALCULATIONS done!
Let’s get started by the AVERAGE, checking the Zone diet tables, regarding to meat, numbers don’t really vary in between veal, chicken, pork, or even fish (as long as the meat is considered high quality, with low fat content, os just lean…).
For all those meats, 1 block equals to approximately 30-40 g UNCOOKED (GREAT for our calculations). So we will use 35g average on further calculation steps
To make our lives simpler, let’s consider a woman should eat 3 blocks (35*3 = 105 g of meat per meal) and a man should eat 4 clocks (35*4 = 140 g of meat per meal). We will also consider only 2 meals per day as LUNCH and DINNER, as most of us don’t really eat prepared meals for breakfast and afternoon snacks.
In that way, in a week, a woman would need 7*2*105 = 1470 g of meat, while a man 7*2*140 = 1960 g. Not considering the meals eaten outside we got actually to great numbers and easy to remember 1,5 kg for woman and 2 kg for a man.
The Zone Diet meat consume should be approximately 1,5 kg for a woman, and 2,0 kg for a man.
So now let’s try to optimize variation, and food packages in order to prepare our meal plan and get ready to make our meal planning.
Once most of the meat packages are packaged in amounts near 500-600 g (or when you order there directly on the butcher, it is in general good numbers to order). Let’s make a plan in which ⅓ of the meals will be on chicken, ⅓ on pork and ⅓ on veal.
Meat distribution and total count for the week.
Monday = Chicken and Pork
Tuesday = Pork and Veal
Wednesday = Veal and Chicken
Thursday = Chicken and Veal
Friday = Veal and Pork
Saturday = Pork and Chicken
Sunday = Chicken and Veal
Total meals: 5 times Chicken, 4 times Pork 5 times Veal.
(Sorry if this information sounds like unconnected to the rest of the blog, and text, but this variation-combination will be used in later posts when we link the carbs + vegetables to the meat we just planned now).
Also note that having this distribution written can help you plan your cooking and keeping ingredients fresh, you can cook your chicken pork and veal, or plan to marinate or freeze portions to optimize your time.
Another hint regarding meat handling and planning meals that we do in our home, in general we choose to cook pork in the oven (specially if the cut is not so lean), chicken or pork steak, always goes marinated into frying pan or grill, and we consume veal always as a steak. In this way, chicken and pork can be quickly prepared just before each meal, and pork meals will always be ready and be cook “attention free” while we are doing other tasks in the house.
Also we always prepare our own homemade marinate… we plan to post some recipes and hints, later on the blog.
How many times per week do you plan to go to supermarket? How many times per week do you plan to cook?
This is a personal question to put some thoughts, on how to keep it fresh, both cooked and uncooked meat (and of course also side garnishes).
Some guidelines should be:
- Try to never let unfrozen meat in fridge without any seasoning for more than 2 days (ground meat, seafood or all poultry = birds should never stay unfrozen for longer than 2 days, red meat such as beef, veal, lamb and pork can be safely stored for up to 5 days).
- Use seasoning and marinates, garlic, salt, lime, vinegar, pepper, oil, etc. But don’t over trust the marinated, still keep the 2 days in the fridge rule!
- Try to never let cooked food in the fridge for more than 2 days (freeze it when cooked), even though as a general rule, food should be safe to eat at maximum 4th day.
- If there is some hard to go or to find item (like there is a special butcher you like to buy some kind of meat, try to calculate how much of that product you will need – consume, buy for the whole month and freeze separated by weekly portions.
- Be careful and research on specific meal ingredientes to be kept in room temperature, specially fruits and vegetables, or how to take the most of their preparation (that will be explored in future articles).
We hope that is helpful and that will give you some guidelines for next time you go to the grocery store, butcher or supermarket. Do you have any question or suggestion? Please post in the comments and we will do our best to update text to fill up the gaps and help you further 😀
Hope we all are able to prepare delicious meals, lose weight and save money!
Nutrition is one of the key factors on fitness results, so follow the blog to learn more!