9 Best Healthy Meal Plans to Try in the New Year – Women's Health UK

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Healthy meal plans are the mid-week saviours when it comes to Wednesday evening, you’ve worked or gymmed late and the thought of thinking about breakfast, lunch and dinner the following day seems overwhelming, to say the very least.
Outside of being a handy resource, healthy meal plans can also be a great way to make sure you’re eating a balanced and nutrient dense range of foods – great news for those of you who find it difficult to shake the ‘tried and tested’ route when it comes to oats, grilled chicken and broccoli. There’s a whole lentil and salmon filled world out there, people!
We’ve rounded up nine of our favourite healthy meal plans with a deep dive on a two week plan that’ll help shake the cobwebs off your meal prep routine and have you feeling back-to-best in no time.
However, before we go deep on getting you sorted, there are some considerations to take into account.
Firstly, what should you actually be looking for when selecting a meal plan? How can you know that the plan that worked for your book-club buddy is suitable or appropriate for you and your goals?
‘If the claims sound drastic or too good to be true then they probably are,’ says WH resident nutritionist Jenna Hope. ‘Avoid meal plans that demonise food groups or cut out macronutrients. Instead, ensure that the meal plan is going to fit with your lifestyle and your food choices; rearranging your lifestyle to eat food which you don’t enjoy is unsustainable and therefore you’re more likely to fall into the binge/restrict diet cycle.’
‘Finally, if you’re left feeling hungry and unsatisfied then please seek more personalised professional dietary advice as under eating may cause health complications in the future,’ cautions Hope.

Breakfast: Peanut butter and strawberry overnight oats.
Lunch: Pack of Merchant Gourmet Wholewheat Giant Couscous with roasted pepper, red onion and courgette, 30g feta and 2 handfuls of rocket.

Dinner: Courgette, feta and mint frittata (2 medium courgettes, grated; handful fresh mint leaves, chopped, 1 small onion, finely chopped, salt and pepper, glug of olive oil, 8 eggs, pinch of cayenne pepper)
Snack: 2 boiled eggs
Breakfast: 150g Greek yoghurt, 2 handfuls of mixed berries, 1 tbsp pumpkin seeds.
Lunch: Courgette, feta and mint frittata.
Dinner: Baked paprika-spiced chicken with asparagus (6 sprays of olive oil; 2 chicken breasts; paprika; salt and pepper; 300g asparagus; 2 corn cobs; 1 avocado, sliced).

Snack: 2 tbsp hummus with carrot sticks.
Breakfast: Banana overnight oats
Lunch: Baked paprika-spiced chicken with asparagus

Dinner: Lentil and tomato soup (1 tsp ground cumin; 1 tsp ground coriander; 1 tbsp olive oil; 1 red onion, finely diced; salt and pepper; 2 garlic cloves, crushed; 100g red lentils; 300ml chicken or vegetable stock; 400g tin of chopped tomatoes; natural yoghurt, to serve).
Snack: 1 tbsp almond butter on 2 oatcakes
Breakfast: Smoothie made from 50g strawberries, 1 frozen ripe banana, 100g natural Greek yoghurt, 300ml almond milk, 2 tbsp chia seeds, 1 tsp cinnamon.
Lunch: Lentil and tomato soup.
Dinner: Lamb and courgette skewers (recipe next day)
Snack: Peanut butter and chia energy ball (90g rolled oats; 130g peanut butter; 2 tbsp honey; 1 tbsp chia seeds; handful of cacao nibs).
Breakfast: Smoothie made from 1/2 frozen mango, 1/2 frozen avocado, 2 handfuls of spinach, 300ml unsweetened soya milk, juice of 1/2 lime.
Lunch: Lamb and courgette skewers (1 tbsp olive oil; 300g lamb, diced with fat removed; 2 tsp ground cumin; salt and pepper; 2 courgettes; 2 red onions; 400g green veg of your choice, steamed).

Dinner: 2 mackerel fillets served with 50g steamed kale and 100g brown rice.
Snack: 30g dark chocolate.

Breakfast: 2 large eggs, scrambled and 1/2 avocado on a slice of wholegrain toast.
Lunch: Mackerel with kale and brown rice.
Dinner: Grilled chicken with chickpeas, spinach and butternut squash (1 chicken breast; 1 butternut squash, diced; 1 tbsp olive oil, 1/2 garlic clove, minced; 300g spinach; 400g tin of chickpeas; 2 tbsp ground cumin).
Snack: An apple with 1 tbsp almond butter.
Breakfast: Three ingredient pancakes made from 1 ripe banana, 2 eggs and 1/2 tsp cinnamon. Top with Greek yoghurt, berries and seeds.
Lunch: Grilled chicken with chickpeas, spinach and butternut squash.
Dinner: Broccoli and bean soup (1 head of broccoli; 1 tbsp olive oil; 4 garlic cloves, chopped; 1 tbsp ground cumin; salt and pepper; 200g spinach; 400g tin of cannellini beans; juice of 1 lemon; handful of fresh coriander; 600ml vegetable stock).
Snack: 2 tbsp beetroot and white bean dip with cucumber sticks.
Breakfast: Peanut butter and banana overnight oats (50g jumbo oats; 2 tbsp natural yoghurt; 1/2 apple, coarsely grated; 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon; 150ml milk; 1 tbsp chia seeds. To serve: peanut butter, sliced strawberry, banana).
Lunch: Broccoli and bean soup.

Dinner: 2 baked salmon fillets, 2 medium sweet potatoes, 1 pepper, 1 courgette, 1 red onion and a handful of cherry tomatoes, all chopped and roasted.

Snack: 2 tbsp hummus with carrot sticks.

Breakfast: Strawberry overnight oats.
Lunch: Baked salmon fillet with roast vegetables and sweet potato.

Dinner: Beetroot, feta and chickpea salad.

Snack: Handful of almonds and an apple (400g tin of chickpeas; 80g feta, crumbled; 4 beetroot, sliced; 2 spring onions, chopped; 1 small bag of spinach; juice of 1/2 lemon; glug of olive oil).
Breakfast: 2 poached eggs on a slice of wholegrain toast.
Lunch: Beetroot, feta and chickpea salad.

Dinner: Chicken and vegetable soup (1 tbsp olive oil; 3 large onions, chopped; 8 garlic cloves, chopped; 40g fresh ginger, chopped; 8 chicken breasts; 6 large carrots, chopped; 2ltr chicken stock; 3 large courgettes, chopped; 1 large green or white cabbage, shredded; crusty whole grain bread, to serve – optional).

Snack: 2 tbsp beetroot and white bean dip with cucumber sticks.
Breakfast: 150g Greek yoghurt topped with passion fruit.
Lunch: Chicken and vegetable soup.

Dinner: Sweet potato jackets with tuna (2 sweet potatoes; 185g tin of tuna, drained; 1/2 red onion, finely sliced; 1 small red chilli, sliced; juice of 1 lime; 6 tbsp Greek yoghurt; handful of coriander leaves).

Snack: 2 hard boiled eggs.
Breakfast: 2 slices of wholegrain toast, topped with 2 heaped tbsp almond butter and chia jam (4 tbsp chia seeds; 1 heaped tsp beetroot powder; 100ml Press London Orchard 1 Strawberry, Apple, Lemon, Mint juice or any red fruit juice).
Lunch: Sweet potato jackets with tuna.

Dinner: Broccoli and bean soup.

Snack: 30g dark chocolate.
Breakfast: Smoothie made from 1/2 frozen mango, 1/2 frozen avocado; 2 handfuls of spinach; 300 ml unsweetened soya milk, juice of 1/2 lime).
Lunch: Broccoli and bean soup.

Dinner: Chickpea, pumpkin and coconut curry (1 tbsp coconut oil; 1 onion, thinly sliced; 500g pumpkin, deseeded, peeled and cut into 3cm cubes; 100ml madras cooking sauce; 350ml coconut milk; 400g tin of chickpeas, rinsed and drained; handful of spinach; 2 tbsp chopped fresh coriander, to serve; brown rice, to serve).

Snack: 150g yoghurt and raspberries.
Breakfast: Chia seed porridge (30g oats; 300ml almond milk; 2 tbsp chia seeds; handful of nuts; 1 banana, chopped; 1 tbsp coconut flakes or dessicated coconut).
Lunch: Chickpeak, pumpkin and coconut curry.

Dinner: 2 pesto-topped cod fillets, baked, 200g broccoli and 350g new potatoes.

Snack: 1 tbsp almond butter on 2 oatcakes.

Queen of Instagram and founder of Sweat with Kayla and BBG, Kayla Itsines, knows how to make good food healthy.
Days: One
Key ingredients: Berries, quinoa, figs, beetroot, chicken, pitta bread, prawns, green veg.
Get Kayla Itsines’ meal plan here

One we borrowed from our brother mag Men’s Health, this plan packs in all of the post-gym protein you’ll need to thrive.
Days: One
Key ingredients: Eggs, salmon, flaxseed, berries, spinach, turkey, protein powder, green veg.
Get the high-protein meal plan here
Less of a do-it-yourself number and more of a ‘sizeable investment’, the Detox Kitchen skin-focused plan promises to improve your diet and complexion in one fell swoop. If you’ve £420 going spare and a penchant for facials – a thrown in bonus – get around the plan that made the Women’s Health fashion director feel ‘lighter and brighter.’
Days: 10 days
Key ingredients: Almonds, beetroot, lentils, kale, cacao

Get the Detox Kitchen’s ‘Skin Food’ meal plan here

Another Instagram star, the Body Coach has a plethora of cookbooks and therefore healthy recipes for you to choose from. Try his plan for a simple solution to your healthy eating woes. Don’t forget the Lucy Bee Coconut oil…
Days: Two (meal options for rest and training days)
Key foods: Sweet potatoes, spinach, salmon, eggs, red cabbage, prawns, rocket, aubergine.
Get The Body Coach’s simple healthy eating plan here
We get it; bloating is the worst. Enter the three-day de-bloating plan to help flatten out and calm your sore tummy.
Days: Three
Key foods: Avocado, eggs, rocket, sweet potatoes, hummus, peas, bananas, chicken, beansprouts, spinach.
Get the de-bloating meal plan here
Each day of this two week plan seeks to help you hit your nutritional recommended daily amounts (as specified by the NHS) – e.g. less than 70g of fat, than 20g of saturates, eating at least 260g of carbs, 90gs of sugar, 50g of protein and less than 6g of salt.
Days: Fourteen
Key foods: Butter beans, sweet potato, wholegrain pasta and sourdough, spinach, lentils.

Get the balanced two week meal plan here

WW Flex, the rebranded child of Weight Watchers, is their latest plan designed to help participants lose weight sustainably – just as they helped celebs like Oprah, Kate Hudson and Jennifer Hudson when they joined the plan. A revised version of Weight Watchers, WW Flex uses a Smart Points system whereby you tot up the nutrient dense food you’re consuming with the option to bank some leeway for weekends, date nights and get togethers.
Days: Ongoing
Key foods: Eggs, fresh fish, lentils, tofu, yoghurt, sweetcorn.

Get the WW Flex meal plan here

After metabolism-boosting healthy meal plans? Consider this the HIIT of the meal plan world, guaranteed to have your body burning fat faster than you can say “quinoa”.
Days: One
Key foods: Broccoli, salmon, rice, eggs, quinoa, pineapple, yoghurt, sweet potatoes, venison.
Get the one day fat burning meal plan here
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