Nutrition

Stay Healthy in Lockdown with this 7-Day Meal Plan

When you’re trying to lead a healthy lifestyle, your eating habits are the most important component – especially if you’re stuck at home in lockdown and have little else to do! To follow a healthy diet, it is important to keep your kitchen stocked with some essential items that you can combine in many ways to create well balanced meals. 

Planning your meals ahead of time and following a strict shopping list can help you stay on track. 

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What Constitutes a Healthy Diet? 

When we consider a healthy diet, there are more components than you might think. While we want to base our meals around lean proteins, whole grain carb sources, and fruits and vegetables, there are more factors to consider thanks to the most recent Dietary Guidelines.1 

 

A variety of vegetables and fruits

Choose varied coloured vegetables (dark green, red and orange, starchy vegetables) and opt for whole fruits (berries, apples) over juice. Eating the whole fruit provides additional fibre and not just the sugary liquid that juice provides.

Aim for at least 3 servings of vegetables and 2 servings of fruit each day. 

 

Calcium sources

Whether you choose dairy milk or alternatives (soy, rice, oat), make sure you get about 3 servings of high-calcium foods per day to protect your bones and teeth. If choosing dairy products, opt for low fat versions when possible. If you drink an alternative milk, check the label to make sure it provides calcium. 

 

Protein foods

A variety of protein sources provides the best balance of nutrients and amino acids, but you can survive on all-animal sources or all-plant proteins, like beans, peas, and lentils. Try to limit fat and prepare protein foods in ways that don’t add fat, like baking or broiling instead of frying.

Between 5 and 8 ounces of protein is enough for the day, but you may need more based on your workout routine.
 

Fats

Choose heart-healthy oils over saturated fats, like olive oil instead of butter. Try to limit added fat when cooking foods, and select healthy fats for snacking like avocado, nuts, and seeds. Keep your saturated fat intake less than 10% of your total fat for the day. 

 

Salt

Limit foods that are in high sodium by avoiding highly processed foods (think foods that can sit on the shelf forever – mostly junk food) and restaurant foods. Try to not add salt when cooking. 

 

Added sugars

It can be hard to limit your sweet tooth, especially if you’re bored. Try to keep healthy options around, like small portions of dark chocolate or your favourite fruit (natural sugar) on hand for when you’re craving something sweet.  

 

Alcohol

While 1 drink per day for women or 2 per day for men can be part of a healthy lifestyle, alcohol is calorie dense – it provides 7 calories per gram, which is more than carbs or protein (4 calories per gram) and closer to fat (9 calories per gram). It can lead to weight gain, so consider whether or not fitting alcohol into your plan is a priority. 

 

How Regularly Should You Eat?

While there is not a one-size fits all plan for the timing of your meals and snacks, consider the eating patterns that work best for you based on your lifestyle, workout, and work schedule. If you’re following an intermittent fasting plan, you probably have the timing very structured. 

If you’ve never followed a regular eating pattern before, adding some structure to your day can help limit overeating and excess snacking. Eating breakfast within a few hours of waking can kickstart your metabolism and prevent overeating later in the day. 

Going more than 3 or 4 hours between large meals might require planning a healthy snack. While many people think eating before bed causes weight gain, the more important factor is your total calorie intake throughout the day. If you hit your calorie goals at dinner time, anything you eat later WILL lead to weight gain – simply from a positive calorie balance. 

Plan your meals and snacks based on when you feel the hungriest and when you need to prep for or refuel from your workout. We’ll describe a plan that includes 3 meals and 2 snacks, but you can combine snacks for higher calorie meals or move them around based on your schedule. 

 

Your Healthy 7-Day Diet Plan

Keep in mind that portion sizes vary based on your individual calorie and exercise goals. 

Day 1

Breakfast:

  • Old fashioned oats with a scoop of protein powder 
  • Berries 
  • Almonds 

Morning Snack:

  • Apple slices 
  • Peanut butter 

Lunch:

  • Mixed greens salad
  • Grilled chicken
  • Yoghurt

Afternoon Snack:

  • Baby carrots 
  • Hummus 

Dinner:

  • Strip steak with sweet potato and green beans 

This day providers two sources of animal proteins and fruits and vegetables for snacks, balanced with some healthy fats. 


Day 2 

Breakfast:

  • Ancient grain toast with avocado and sliced tomato 
  • Orange slices 

Morning Snack:

  • Hard boiled eggs and raisins 

Lunch:

  • Black bean burger on whole grain bun 

Afternoon Snack:

  • Banana and peanut butter 

Dinner:

  • Chicken and vegetable stir fry with brown rice 

This day combines vegetable-based proteins and animal proteins with whole grains to keep you satisfied and feeling full. 


Day 3 

Breakfast:

  • Banana-berry protein shake with one scoop protein powder, frozen banana, low fat milk, frozen berries, chia seeds 

Morning Snack:

  • Whole grain crackers and string cheese 

Lunch:

  • Low carb wrap with tuna salad and tomato 

Afternoon Snack:

  • Mandarin oranges 
  • Edamame 

Dinner:

  • Whole grain pasta with meat sauce and sauteed zucchini 

This day keeps grains relatively low until dinner time, reserving carbs for a filling whole grain pasta dish.


Day 4 

Breakfast:

  • Whole grain tortilla with scrambled eggs, cheese, peppers and onions 

Morning Snack:

  • Celery and peanut butter 

Lunch:

  • Lettuce wraps with shrimp, cashews, coleslaw, and teriyaki sauce 

Afternoon Snack:

  • Protein bar and cherries 

Dinner:

  • Roasted salmon and broccoli 
  • Caesar salad 

This day is moderately low in carbs, but could be lower without the tortilla at breakfast. Add in a serving of grains at dinner if you don’t care about limiting your carbs. 


Day 5 

Breakfast: 

  • Greek yogurt with low sugar granola and mango 

Morning Snack: 

  • Trail mix  

Lunch: 

  • Grilled chicken sandwich and side salad 

Afternoon Snack: 

  • Protein shake 

Dinner: 

  • Beef vegetable chili with baked tortilla chips 

This day focuses on a heartier lunch meal and a vegetable/beef combination soup for a lighter dinner. 


Day 6 

Breakfast:

  • Whole grain toast with almond butter and apple slices 

Morning Snack:

  • Grapes and cottage cheese 

Lunch:

  • Vegetable soup 
  • Crackers 
  • Strawberries 

Afternoon Snack:

  • Grapefruit 

Dinner:

  • Cauliflower-crust pizza 
  • Spinach salad with hard boiled egg and strawberries 

This day focuses on fresh fruit, low carb pizza, and no meats. 


Day 7 

Breakfast:

  • Two poached eggs over spinach, meatless sausage 
  • Fruit salad 

Morning Snack:

  • Rice cakes with peanut butter 

Lunch:

  • Quinoa topped with roasted veggies and cilantro dressing 

Afternoon Snack:

  • Cucumbers and hummus 

Dinner:

  • Baked chicken in tomato sauce with couscous 

This day includes more involved meals for a day when you have time to cook – prepare leftovers to make the next day’s meals easier. 


Take Home Message 

When you plan your meals for the week and only purchase the ingredients you need, it’s easier to stick to a healthy eating plan. Based on your goals you can decide when to limit carbs or fat and when you can have larger portions. Combining simple snacks like fruit with a source of fat (avocado, nuts, or seeds), can make you feel more satisfied and prevent overeating.

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Our articles should be used for informational and educational purposes only and are not intended to be taken as medical advice. If you’re concerned, consult a health professional before taking dietary supplements or introducing any major changes to your diet.


  1. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and U.S. Department of Agriculture. 2015 – 2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. 8th Edition. 


Claire Muszalski

Claire Muszalski

Writer and expert

Claire is a Registered Dietitian through the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and a board-certified Health and Wellness Coach through the International Consortium for Health and Wellness Coaching. She has a Bachelor of Science in Biology and a Master’s degree in Clinical Dietetics and Nutrition from the University of Pittsburgh.

Talking and writing about food and fitness is at the heart of Claire’s ethos as she loves to use her experience to help others meet their health and wellness goals.

Claire is also a certified indoor cycling instructor and loves the mental and physical boost she gets from regular runs and yoga classes. When she’s not keeping fit herself, she’s cheering on her hometown’s sports teams in Pittsburgh, or cooking for her family in the kitchen.

Find out more about Claire’s experience here.


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