I’m sure you have heard of the term “Clean Eating” as it has been doing the rounds for some time now. You can find everything from clean eating blogs right through to clean eating magazines. A question I get asked a lot is “what exactly is clean eating?”
Well to me, to eat clean isn’t just about eating it’s more to do with a lifestyle change, not some fad diet or a hopeful quick fix.
Many of the authors and bloggers of clean eating may have different views or opinions, however the founding principles of the clean eating way of life are the same. So read on as below are 4 tips that you can use to incorporate a clean diet into your life.
1. Processed Foods
Probably the foundation principle of the clean eating way of life is to remove processed and pre-packaged food and drink items from your life. Whether your reasons for wanting to eat clean are to improve your health and wellbeing or weight loss, ditching the processed foods and drinks will be essential.
The reason for this is that to have a clean diet means to eat from mother natures table – the fresher the food items the better. This means that you will be consuming less artificial colours, flavors, preservatives, emulsifiers, enhancers and other additives. So this can only be a good thing not only for your health but also for your weight loss efforts.
2. Local Foods
As previously mentioned, clean eating means to be eating more fresh foods and minimal to no processed foods. So what about pesticides? Buying organic is not affordable for everyone, but the non-organic options are generally grown with pesticides and other potentially harmful chemicals, many of which have been shown to cause havoc with hormones. Below is a list of the most heavily sprayed fruits and vegetables so if you can buy these organic then that’s better than nothing:
Apples, Celery, Cherries, Tomatoes, Cucumbers, Grapes, Hot Peppers, Peaches, Potatoes, Spinach, Strawberries, Bell Peppers or Capsicum.
So incorporate these foods into your clean eating recipes.
I always recommend being locally grown and in season. The reason for this is anything local will be fresher as it doesn’t have to come from the other side of the world. Also we are actually meant to eat in season as well. Apples for example don’t grow all year round, so they are coming from far away lands and who knows how long they are stored for. I’ve been told that some apples can be up to 12 months old when you buy them.
The result is that the nutritional value of these items will be significantly less. So why pay for something when you’re not even going to reap the full benefits? If you’re going to eat clean then you may as well do it right.
Therefore buying locally grown and in season is always best and if you can buy organic.
3. Portion Size
Eating smaller portioned meals more frequently throughout the day is a much healthier option compared to the old standard of the 3 larger meals a day.
Having hours pass in between meals brings on energy peaks and troughs due to blood sugar fluctuations. It has also been shown to slow down your metabolism which is not good if you are trying to lose weight. This can also cause people to snack on bad foods and overeat as well.
Eating 4 – 6 smaller portioned meals more frequently throughout your day is actually quite easy. Just plan out what your healthy meals will be and prepare them and take them with you. This way you won’t be tempted to snack on bad foods or drinks.
Have you ever noticed how large some ingredients are on packaged foods? Yes isn’t it ridiculous. Most of the time you have no idea what these ingredients are anyway, as they are either massive words that you can’t pronounce or it’s just a code… like you were just meant to know what that code meant.
Have you ever wondered why an orange doesn’t have an ingredient list? That’s right, it has over 4,000 phytonutrients (plant nutrients) yet there is not ingredient list. So what does that say for the so called processed foods? And that includes “natural health” foods in that list as well. The fewer ingredients the better.
To eat clean doesn’t have to be a chore, it’s actually quite simple. Eat mainly unprocessed foods and drinks will do wonders for your body not to mention for your weight loss efforts if that is what you are aiming for.
To great health,
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