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Anarray of healthy foods including asparagus, pasta, onions and tomatoes

Overall Healthy Eating Plan for SCI

A healthy diet is always a good choice; healthy eating can help prevent or manage a specific SCI-related secondary health complication.

This edition will provide you with a guide to eating the recommended daily serving sizes of proteins, carbohydrates and fats for people with SCI, as well as high quality sources of these foods. 

It will also provide an example of a weekly menu plan to show you how to easily integrate these foods into your daily diet.

1. Protein

Recommended servings: 2-3 a day (Serving = the size and thickness of the palm of your hand-not including fingers)

  • Red meat (limit to 1-2x/week)
  • Fish (3-4x/week)
  • Chicken
  • Turkey
  • Eggs
  • Plain Greek yogurt
  • Quinoa
  • Protein powder

2. Grains

Recommended serving: 1 a day (Serving size = 1 slice or ½ a cup)

  • Unprocessed oatmeal
  • Brown rice
  • Whole grain bread
  • Whole grain pasta (e.g, spelt, kamut)

3. Legumes 

Recommended serving: 2-3 a day (Serving size = ½ a cup)

  • Beans (e.g, kidney beans, navy beans, chick peas etc.)
  • Lentils

4. Nuts/Seeds

Recommended serving: 1 a day (Serving size = 8-10 almonds, 2 walnuts, 1-2 tbsp seeds)

  • Almonds
  • Walnuts
  • Ground flax seeds
  • Chia seeds
  • Hemp seeds

5. Vegetables

Recommended serving: 5+ a day (Serving size = 1/2 cup)

  • Asparagus
  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Celery
  • Cucumbers
  • Kale
  • Spinach
  • Peppers
  • Artichoke
  • Sweet potato

6. Fruits

Recommended serving size: 1-2 a day

  • Apple
  • Pear
  • Berries (1 cup)
  • Peach
  • Nectarine
  • Avocado 

7. Healthy Fats

  • Olive oil = 1 tablespoon a day 
  • Omega 3 essential fatty acid = 2-4 tablespoons or 2, 1000 mg capsules (always consult with your physician before taking any nutritional supplements, 
    including fish oils)
  • Olives
  • Walnuts
  • Ground flax seeds
  • Avocadoes
  • Fish (salmon, tuna, sardines, haddock)


  • Refined carbohydrates and sugars (eg., white flour, white rice, white pasta, cakes, cookies, donuts etc.,)
  • Packaged/overly processed foods (eg., refined breakfast cereals)
  • Processed sugar and artificial sweeteners
  • Limit coffee to no more than 2 cups a day 
  • Pop

Healthy Weekly Menu

Healthy Weekly Menu

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