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Digby's Basic Daily Mealplan

As requested, I am posting the basic daily mealplan I am currently using. I start with this same meal plan every morning, then adjust and make substitutions depending on what fruit/veggies, etc. are on hand, my schedule, and, sometimes, just because of what I want to eat on a particular day.

Note that any food with a quantity of "0.02" in front of it is an item that I will frequently substitute in for another food.

Details of my day-to-day diet and exercise program can be seen on my log at:, or by accessing the link below.

2000-Calorie Alternative: Beans/Yogurt/Nuts/Seeds/Fruits/Vegetables

1-1/2 cups Beans Pinto cooked
4 tablespoons (1/4 cup) Peanuts raw, unsalted
30 grams (1/4 cup) Walnuts
2 cups Milk skim
16 ounces Broccoli frozen
1/2 cup Oatmeal dry (cook as part of oatmeal mix)
1 cup Yogurt Plain fat free
1/4 cup Raisins seedless
4-1/4 ounces Banana (without peel)
6 ounces Apple raw w/skin
6 ounces Orange (without skin)
1/2 cup Onion raw, chopped
2 ounces Mushrooms raw
2 cloves Garlic (approx. 6 gms/clove)
8-1/4 oz Coffee brewed-drip
1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon Pepper cayenne red
0.02 cup Soybeans boiled
0.02 Cup Cottage Cheese low fat 1%
0.02 oz Prunes dried pitted
0.02 oz kimchi ("Korean Sauerkraut")
0.02 oz Salmon, Pacific, wild, Filet
0.02 oz Stk Sirloin, separable lean & fat trimmed to 0" fat
0.02 pieces Corn Tortillas (5" diameter)
0.02 oz Tuna canned, oil light drained
0.02 Tablespoon Sunflower Kernels dried unsalted
0.02 oz Chicken drumstick roasted w/o skin
0.02 oz Salmon, Pink canned
0.02 oz Soybeans, roasted, salted (also called Soy Nuts)
0.02 oz Pear
0.02 oz Carrots raw slices
0.02 oz Cantaloupe
0.02 oz Celery raw


Wed. Nov 30, 2:40pm

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A question for you Digby

I think 2000 calories a day is too much for a woman. Its ok for a man. Or am I wrong?
I always thought 1200 cals a day is the mantra to effectively lose weight

Thursday, December 01, 2005, 1:52 AM

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It depends on the persons activity level. If you look at some of the spotlighters (Colleen & Carrieanne) they are at a plateau and with their activity levels need to increase their calories to break the plateau. There is no standard of calories needed to lose weight. People who weight train have a higher metabolism due to increased muscle mass and truly need more to maintain their body. Something else to keep in mind is a person's size. A heavier person needs more calories to maintain their weight and that is why it tends to be much easier for heavier people to lose weight, at least initially. 1200 calories per day is probably too low for most people, especially active people. That's not far from starvation mode.

Thursday, December 01, 2005, 8:02 AM

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carrieanne here

so, i've been thinking and researching and am realizing that i'm simply not consuming enough fat. and THAT might be having a huge impact on my weight loss. i've linked to one of the informative articles that i found below.

i think i prob get to about 20 g of fat on a high-fat day, but normally, i'm probably a wee bit lower. i'm going to do better about actually measuring going forward, but it's begining to become clear that my current habits aren't getting the job done.

time to make a new plan.


Thursday, December 01, 2005, 8:50 AM

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To answer the question of the original poster, yes, 2000 calories is very close to the USDA recommendations for a man my age doing heavy labor. It would probably be high in calories for a woman of approximately the same weight, depending on her metabolism and activity level.

The "Mayo Healthy Weight Plan" on which I have based my diet starts with a 1200 calorie diet for women and a 1400 calorie diet for men, but allows unlimited fruits and vegetables. this plan worked very well for me, and I have continued to follow the basic guidelines to maintain my weight loss for the past 4 years.

If you are not following a good, long-term weight plan, you might want to check out the Mayo Healthy Weight Plan, or a later edition. The later edition is available on Amazon for around $12.00 plus shipping. Used copies may also be available.

Hope this helps.


Thursday, December 01, 2005, 8:54 AM

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Carrieanne, my guess is that you are not getting enough fat.

If you are not using some type of software to help you with your diet planning and tracking, you might check out "DietBalancer" from I have posted a URL that should take you there. When the site comes up, click on the URL at the bottom of the screen that says, "See All Nutridata Products", or something similar.

There are other software packages that would do the job,too.



Thursday, December 01, 2005, 9:04 AM

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thanks digby

i checked out the dietbalancer. it seems pretty interesting.

i am a little dubious about the download however b/c i can't find any reviews of it online and it doesn't say whether it works on a MAC (and i have a mac.) can you tell me a little more about it? their site doesn't really tell me much.

Thursday, December 01, 2005, 9:23 AM

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Maintenance calories are going to differ by sex, age, body size, body composition, and activity level (to state the obvious).

For me (female, almost 40, active, not tall) 1600/day is maintenance and 1200/day is losing weight.

Thursday, December 01, 2005, 9:38 AM

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To the previous poster: What do you weigh to have to maintain your weight at 1600 calories?

Thursday, December 01, 2005, 10:33 AM

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Carrieanne, I don't know if DietBalancer would work on a MAC or not. When I bought it, I got it on a CD, along with a brief User's Manual. I just checked and the CD and User's Manual talk only about Windows---not MAC.

You could perhaps contact the vendor and ask if it works with a MAC. Also, you could get more info about it, and perhaps reviews, by doing a Google search.

I came across it, by the way, from a referral in book discussing nutrition for triathletes. The author recommended it highly, and I would have to concur that it has been very useful for me in meal planning and monitoring my diet.

In any case, there should be other softwares available that will do about the same job with a MAC.

Sorry I can't be of more help on this. When someone says "MAC", by brain sort of shuts down. I will keep this in the back of my mind, however, and perhaps can come up with a better answer for you after I have had a chance to mull it over.


Thursday, December 01, 2005, 10:44 AM

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"To the previous poster: What do you weigh to have to maintain your weight at 1600 calories?"

About 135. That's with a heck of a lot of exercise. Got to love the middle-aged female metabolism.

Thursday, December 01, 2005, 2:24 PM

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