The honest and inquisitive, What exactly is clean eating?
The judgmental and know-it-all, Really? That’s it.
The well-intentioned and interested, I would really like to eat clean, but don’t know how to start. Do you have any advice?
Today I will address the question, What does it mean to eat clean?
|Cantaloupe and Blueberries|
Clean eating is a thoughtful way of nourishing your body. Our bodies are designed to consume foods that are whole, natural and bursting with nutrients; however, most of us do not consume foods that respect these needs. Clean eating replaces processed, refined, toxic and nutritionally devoid foods with those that are as close to nature as possible. This creates a diet that will transform you into your best self: healthy, vibrant and lean.
By combining natural, whole foods into 5-6 small meals a day, each consisting of lean proteins, complex carbohydrates and healthy fats, clean eating will transform your body into an energetic powerhouse.
|Grilled Chicken on Bibb Lettuce topped with Almond Butter|
Eating clean is also good for the World. It is a preservationist approach to making smart food choices that respect the land, animals and your health. The core values of clean eating focus on making local, sustainable, eco-friendly choices that minimize waste and conserve resources.
Eating close to nature translates to shopping the outer aisles at the supermarket, especially the produce, bulk bin, dairy and meat departments, visiting farmer’s markets and making contact with local farmers and suppliers using sites like localharvest.org.
|Quinoa Mango Salad|
The following are some examples of easy swaps that you can make to clean up your diet, please note that this is not a comprehensive list:
Category of food
Refined, white sugar
High Fructose Corn Syrup
Artificial Sweeteners (Splenda, Aspartame, etc.)
Sugar Alcohols (Xylitol, sorbitol, etc.)
SuCaNat (Sugar Cane Natural)
Maple Sugar Flakes
Enriched White Flour
White Rice Flour
Unbleached white flour
Quick Cooking Oats
Semolina (white) Pasta
Whole Wheat Flour
White Whole Wheat Flour
Brown Rice Flour
Steel Cut Oats
Whole Grain Malt O Meal
Whole Wheat Pasta
Brown Rice Pasta
Conventionally Grown Produce
Organic Produce, specifically those you intend to eat the skin of and the “Dirty Dozen”:
Dairy and Eggs
Milk from cows treated with rBST
Cheese that is free of hormones and antibiotics
Cage-free or Organic Eggs
Conventional meat from animals treated with hormones and antibiotics
Processed, cured and preserved meats (bacon, hot dogs, brats, deli meat)
Meat from animals not treated with hormones and antibiotics, preferably allowed to roam in their natural environment
Uncured meats that do not contain added nitrates, nitrites, preservatives and sodium
In future posts I will explore the topics of how to start eating clean, the importance of reading nutrition labels, and how to shop each grocery store department. Also, check out a previous post that gave you a glimpse into my Simply Clean Fridge.