Keys to a simple, healthy and economical diet during confinement

The chef Juan Llorca , specialized in children, and the child nutritionist Melisa Gómez , better known as Nutrikids , have decided to contribute their grain of sand in these times of confinement. And what better way to do it than contributing with what they do best. And also, free.

Both have decided to launch ” Healthy Eating with the Family “ , a guide consisting of menus for 15 days . It’s about healthy, balanced meals and dinners with basic and cheap ingredients so that nobody these days is left without good ideas.

Being locked up at home, families are in danger of buying quickly and without order in the few moments they go shopping. But there are also other dangers to watch out for, such as compulsive eating or unhealthy foods . In these moments of uncertainty, Melisa and Juan consider that one of the most important things that can be done these days is to take care of everyone’s diet and enjoy together the preparation as a family .

Plan more than ever

One of the most striking things in the dossier is weekly planning. “It is key,” says Llorca. “In these days when we have been asked to stay home without going out, or at least for what is just and necessary, having a good menu and purchase planning is super important, ” says the chef. “With these we will achieve two things,” he continues. The first is not to buy in excess, but only what we plan to use. That way we will not spend money on products or food that can make us ill or that we don’t need and are superfluous . ”

On the other hand, planning the menus means saving the traditional “headache of having to think of a menu for the whole family that is balanced, healthy and tasty,” adds the chef. “It can be done very uphill, and having a forecast, everything is easier,” he says.

“With planning we do not buy in excess or spend money on those products that we do not need. It also saves us a lot of headaches”

And there are no excuses. Every family can cook whole wheat macaroni with fried tomato sauce and minced meat or a vegetable rice with salad and hard-boiled egg . Even the least expert. «Melisa has revised the menu so that it is well balanced. But we have also taken into account that they were simple cooking ideas , “says the chef. The results are meals with “everyday ingredients, good and tasty and cheap . 

Those who have doubts, do not worry because the chef will help you: «In a few days I will do a live on Instagram in order to solve all the doubts that may arise regarding the menu and its cooking. That way we can help many more families. ”

Harvard plate

In these days of confinement, in which physical activity is reduced to its minimum expression, Melisa remembers that we must prioritize the consumption of fruits, vegetables and legumes , as well as salads, virgin olive oil along with water and infusions like drinks. The most advisable thing is to avoid sugar, pastries, soft drinks and juices, as well as red meat, various sauces and ultra-processed ones . “The less the better,” says Melisa.

A healthy diet in these moments of confinement is “similar to what was recommended to practice before confinement,” recalls the nutritionist. And it should be the one we should follow later, remember.

Families need to be more aware of the Harvard plate than ever, with vegetables and fruits grabbing half the plate. The whole grains (bread, pasta, rice) occupy another quarter of the same with the healthy protein (fish, legumes birds) that complete. “Having this (more visual) resource helps us to better organize meals without leaving any important group behind”, recalls Melisa, who also advises to also base herself on the pyramid of the Flamenco Institute of Healthy Living.

Families need to be more aware of the Harvard plate than ever, with vegetables and fruits grabbing half the plate. The whole grains (bread, pasta, rice) occupy another quarter of the same with the healthy protein (fish, legumes birds) that complete.

“The Harvard dish helps us organize meals better without leaving any important group behind”

“It would be highly recommended to accompany the maintenance of good eating habits with the practice of some physical activity from home, for example by following one of the many direct on social networks on this topic (yoga, dance, various workouts …),” he recalls.

What if we ‘sin’?

Especially in these moments, “it is very easy to turn to food in times of stress, anxiety, boredom, ” recalls Melisa, who remembers that emotional hunger takes its toll. “Many of us turn to food to help us learn to manage what is happening to us and this should not be bad at all. And less in a situation like this, which is completely new and for which we were not prepared.

The trick to not sin is ” have healthy options on hand such as fruits, nuts, dried fruits, teas …”, says the expert. Although he acknowledges: “You also have to be aware that there will be times when this might not be enough and then we could eat something from our group ‘the less the better’ and in doing so, enjoy it without blame .”


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