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Food and Nutrition

Dietitian Diary: A Week With Viveca

Viveca Taylor, RD
/ April 9, 2021

Hello from foggy Pacifica! I wanted to open my Dietitian Diary with a quick note that the last year has been tough and life lately has been especially busy, and I’ve learned that having some flexibility with food is an important self-care practice for me during a hectic time. I think people (understandably) have assumptions about what a dietitian’s meal routine may or may not look like, and I’d be lying if I said I didn’t feel some pressure to align with those expectations, but I also want to share an authentic picture of my food world lately. With that said, here’s a snapshot of my workweek eats from last week. 

(Also, I did a terrible job of getting photos of my food this week. To my patients: I understand the struggle.)

Monday 3/29:

I wake up around 6:30 AM and start my day with tea + milk (I had to take a break from coffee after a bad acid reflux flare-up a couple months ago) and some reading/journaling. I then head down to the garage for a short workout focused on lower body and core. Around 8:30 AM, I have a breakfast of steel cut oats, sliced banana, walnuts and cinnamon. This week, my clinical schedule shifted so I’m now seeing patients on Monday mornings and afternoons, so I spend the morning seeing patients. Mid-morning, I have a hard-boiled egg to tide me over.

I break for lunch and have some of the black bean soup that I made a big batch of yesterday (a delicious America’s Test Kitchen recipe). I top it with Greek yogurt + avocado, and have a few tortilla chips on the side.

After work, I go for another walk while my sweet boyfriend makes dinner for us. We’ve recently been enjoying diving into my giant collection of cookbooks and trying new recipes at home. This week, we chose the black bean soup from America’s Test Kitchen Healthy Family Cookbook and a couple recipes from Ina Garten’s Modern Comfort. Tonight, he makes us Ina’s Crispy Chicken and her Lemon Dill Feta Orzo Salad. I also make a simple green salad to have on the side. It’s a delicious dinner that feels very appropriate for the springtime weather shift. Dessert is two chocolate chip cookies left over from a weekend baking spree.

Tuesday 3/30:

I wake up at 6:30 and have my usual English breakfast tea + milk. I then go out for a relaxing 45-minute walk by the ocean (morning walks are so grounding). Breakfast around 8:30 AM is Greek yogurt topped with sliced banana and strawberries, and a light sprinkle of Purely Elizabeth Blueberry Hemp Granola for crunch. After a couple hours of work, I have a snack of ½ whole wheat tortilla with PB while I enjoy a 30-minute walk break.

Lunch around noon is black bean soup again (so good, I could eat this every day). After I eat, I take the rest of our lunchtime meeting walking. It’s a gorgeous day, over 70 degrees in Pacifica, and there are tons of people out enjoying the beach. After a few hours of work, I have an afternoon snack of strawberries with a couple pieces of sharp cheddar.

We have plans to go out to eat tonight but are both a bit tired, so we instead opt for leftovers, a repeat of last night’s dinner. After dinner, we go for a sunset beach walk before settling in for the evening.

Wednesday 3/31:

Same morning routine. I have plans for an upper body workout but the weather is gorgeous, so I instead go for another morning walk. When I get back I have the same breakfast as Monday – steel cut oats, banana, walnuts, cinnamon. Mid-morning, I make myself a London Fog (earl grey tea, vanilla, cinnamon and steamed milk), and around 11 AM I have a snack of a medium-boiled egg with strawberries because I’m getting a little hungry and won’t be able to eat until after a lunchtime meeting.

Later lunch is an Amy’s Three Cheese and Kale Bake with a side salad. For the rest of the afternoon, I’m in and out of meetings, taking a break for a beautiful, warm and sunny walk and enjoying a couple glasses of the iced mint green tea that I brewed a big batch of for the week. We have plans to make another Ina Garten recipe but are short on time, so we edit it down to sauteed chicken sausage and veggies. After dinner, we pick up ice cream sandwiches to celebrate the beautiful weather.

Thursday 4/1:

Same morning routine again. Today I do a rowing and upper body workout, then have a breakfast of Greek yogurt, muesli, ground flaxseed, sliced banana and cinnamon. Before I start work for the day (I start later on Thursdays), I walk down to a local cafe and pick up an earl grey tea with milk (they make their own blend, and it’s so flavorful) and enjoy it on a walk by the water. 

I plan on soup for lunch but it’s really warm again today, so I instead make a plate of cold italian sausage with a salad of tomato, bell pepper, onion, feta and a homemade vinaigrette, and a few strawberries (lunch pictured below). A couple hours later, I have a few almonds and more iced tea to tide me over until my break. Late afternoon I have a snack because I work until 7 PM on Thursdays: a cutie orange and a couple pieces of sharp cheddar. I also go for another walk. Dinner ends up being a bit haphazard because my boyfriend has a friend visiting last minute, some Annie’s macaroni and cheese (not my best work).

Friday 4/2:

I wake up a bit earlier because I have my first patient at 7 AM. I have my tea + milk and sip on a glass of kefir through my first couple hours of patients. I go out for a 20-minute walk on my morning break then have a breakfast of steel cut oats prepared similarly to earlier in the week. Lunch is another (the last) serving of black bean soup with a cutie orange on the side, followed by a walk by the water with my boyfriend. 

After wrapping up work for the day, I have a snack of some strawberries with sharp cheddar, and we go for another longer walk to wrap up our workweek (such a great way to turn my brain off). Dinner later is leftover Annie’s macaroni and cheese with a similar side salad to Thursday’s lunch (tomato, bell pepper, onion, feta, vinaigrette). After dinner, we relax in front of a movie, while I enjoy a mug of my favorite “dessert cereal” (we all know that’s a thing), Nature’s Path Crunchy Vanilla Sunrise, with almond milk.

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