On this week’s Liz’s Healthy Table podcast, we’re adding flexibility and joy to the meals we feed ourselves and our families. Join me and my guest, Dawn Jackson (DJ) Blatner, RDN for a lively discussion about eating a Flexitarian diet. Say goodbye to restrictive diets and hello to a varied and (mostly) plant-based way of eating.
Dawn Jackson (DJ) Blatner is a registered dietitian and author of The Flexitarian Diet: 100 Quick and Delicious Recipes and The Superfood Swap: The 4-Week Program to Eat What You Crave Without the C.R.A.P. DJ is a certified specialist in sports dietetics, and she’s on the advisory board of Shape magazine. She’s also a celebrity diet consultant for People magazine and a trusted expert who appears regularly on local and national media outlets such as Good Morning America. DJ starred in and won the primetime, weight-loss reality ABC TV show, My Diet is Better Than Yours. She owns a nutrition consulting and communications business with a focus on real food, more fun, and no BS. DJ is a proud Chicagoan who admits to a healthy obsession with jumping rope.
On today’s show, you’ll learn why a Flexitarian diet is the eating style you may want to adopt, and we’ll share a bunch of recipes to curb your cravings for sugar and bring super nutrition to your table. Join us!
“Eating sugar isn’t about the sugar itself, but it’s about the situation and the energy with which we eat it that makes an impact.”
– DJ Blatner, RDN
This is a classic Flexitarian recipe. If you wanted to add some grilled chicken, seafood, or lean beef or pork to the flatbread, that would be AOK on a Flexitarian diet.
- Getting to know DJ, who has been married for 17 years and is stepmom to Christian; she loves her hometown of Chicago
- How the pandemic spurred DJ to jump rope
- DJ’s Nutrition WOW (Words of Wisdom) that come through an email every Monday
- How brand work gets DJ’s creative juices flowing
- Why DJ believes that fun and joy are critical elements of success in life
- How to balance your plate with your “wild child” and your “health nut” in mind every time you eat
- “Flexitarian” diets are a plant-based, vegetarian-ish eating style that doesn’t cut anything out and where meat becomes a condiment-sized part of the meal that can be swapped out for a plant protein
- One of DJ’s favorite recipes: Nutty Brown Rice, which is made with chopped nuts, green onion, and an egg
- DJ’s Chickpea Flatbread with Tahini Sauce, which is made with chickpea flour, water, and olive oil; cook it like a pancake
- How tahini (made with ground sesame seeds) pairs great with yogurt and lemon to make great sauces
- DJ’s BBQ Chicken Bowl, which is made with canned beans cooked in a skillet with BBQ sauce (but it can be made without the chicken!)
- How to use beans and themes when swapping out meat for plant protein – for bean themes, you can add taco seasoning, pesto, or lemon juice and herbs
- DJ’s tips for adding fun to meals and reducing stress in meal planning
- How to break up with sugar but “own it like a boss” when you decide to enjoy a treat; DJ says it’s all about the situation and the energy with which we eat it
- DJ’s tips for dealing with picky eaters: Use the calendar to allow each person to pick the family meal and respectfully try to enjoy everyone’s choices. Also, have a snack list on the refrigerator with what’s in stock
- What’s next for DJ?
- Final words from DJ: “Wake up and show up. Do the work in front of you with joyful enthusiasm, and stay open to all possibilities.”
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