The proof is in the pictures; even fitness experts eat dessert

By Nora Tobin
August 15, 2012

Oatmeal Bowl and Nutritional Shake


I jumpstart my day with a bowl of steel cut oats with flaxseed, almond milk, walnuts, berries, cinnamon, and Stevia. Why these ingredients? Here's a quick rundown of the nutritional benefits:

  • Steel cut oats: High in fiber, protein, B vitamins, and iron
  • Flaxseed: High in fiber and a quality source of omega-3 fats and lignans, antioxidants that have anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory properties
  • Almond milk: High in vitamins A, D, and E, which act as antioxidants, protecting the body's cells from damage.
  • Walnuts: High in polyunsaturated fats (promote healthy blood vessels) and B vitamins (support the nervous system)
  • Berries: Naturally sweet, high in fiber, water, and vitamin C
  • Cinnamon: Anti-inflammatory, helps balance blood sugar
  • Stevia: Calorie-free, low-glycemic, plant-based sweetener (not artificial, no aspartame)

Since I train hard six days a week, I need to make sure that I'm getting enough protein. That's one reason why I drink a plant-based protein shake after every workout (with my breakfast today). I mixed up a Vega One Nutritional Shake-high in plant-based proteins (15g), fiber (6g), greens, probiotics, omega-3s, and antioxidants. Plus, it provides 50 percent of my daily recommended intake of vitamins and minerals. It doesn't get much more convenient than that!

Mid-Morning Snack: Apple and Almond Butter


This power-packed combo delivers protein, fiber, antioxidants, potassium, magnesium, and calcium to keep me feeling full and energized. Both of these foods are also full of nutrients that can help lower risk of heart disease.

My mid-morning snack also included a cup of antioxidant-packed green tea (I make sure to drink two cups of green tea every day).

Lunch: Falafel Pita


Falafel is a good source of manganese, a trace mineral that fights free-radical damage, balances blood sugar levels, and helps the body utilize key nutrients like thiamin (a B vitamin that helps convert carbs into energy and is essential for the functioning of the heart, muscles, and nervous system). But falafel isn't the only superfood in this meal:

  • Tomato: High in cancer-fighting lycopene and a great source of vitamins A and C, which slow down the aging process
  • Red onion: The best natural source of quercetin, a plant-based antioxidant which has anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties
  • Tahini: Rich in an array of B vitamins that promote healthy cell growth and support metabolism

Afternoon Snack: Chocolate Mint Builder's Bar


This grab-and-go snack gives me 20 grams of complete protein, as well as vitamins and minerals without any artificial sugars. I washed it down with coconut water, which is a tasty, natural alternative to high-sugar fruit juice.

Pre-Dinner Bite: Kale Chips


Kale chips are a nutritional powerhouse-low in calories and high in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber.

Dinner: Stir-Fry Vegetables with Quinoa and Salad


As a vegan, I love quinoa for its healthy dose of plant-based protein. This meal is also packed with antioxidants, iron, and calcium. By adding a salad with raw vegetables (not pictured), I got an array of vitamins that promote healthy skin and hair, as well as filling fiber to help maintain a lean body.

Dessert: Vegan Cookies


These delicious vegan cookies are so easy to make! You just need six ingredients:

  • Oatmeal: This complex carb digests slowly and does not spike blood sugar
  • Applesauce: Tasty, healthy alternative for butter in baking
  • Agave nectar: Natural, low-glycemic sweetener with anti-inflammatory and immune-boosting properties
  • Baking soda: Helps treatment of fungus in the body
  • Dark chocolate chips: Rich in antioxidants
  • Cinnamon: Anti-inflammatory properties, regulates blood sugar