I’ve been trying to focus more on the type of foods I eat. The more I learn about health and fitness and proper dietary needs the more I’m drawn to the concept of clean eating. Up until just recently. Pretty much everything on our regular shopping list was all processed, easy to cook, quick or instant, pre-cooked, pre-packaged, included cheese as an ingredient in the long list of ingredients posted on the labels.
But I’m putting a lot of effort these days into cooking meals for David and I. I aim for a protein source, a vegetable of some sort and something whole grain. I learned that we both LOVE barley!! I tastes even better than brown rice. And David will actually eat it! So bonus points for that!
He’s on board and willing to support my efforts to make us both healthier but he doesn’t have the same willpower as I do at the moment. It usually goes this way all the time. I get all hyped about something but it barely ever lasts more than a week and it all withers away. This time is much different though. This time I feel like this is the real deal. I think it’s the fact I have a coach and the whole accountability factor that is the key to my success right now.
Mind you, despite the 2 weeks of healthy eating, no junk food or pop, and the introduction of an actual fitness plan I’ve only lost 2 pounds and I find that discouraging.
But anyyyyyywayys. Below are a few things about clean eating from my coach:
The soul of eating clean is consuming food the way nature delivered it, or as close to it as possible. It is not a diet; it’s a lifestyle approach to food and its preparation, leading to an improved life – one meal at a time.
Eat five to six times a day. Three meals and two to three small snacks. Include a lean protein, plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables, and a complex carbohydrate with each meal. The steady intake of clean food keeps your body energized and burning calories efficiently all day long.
Choose organic clean foods whenever possible. If your budget limits you, make meat, eggs, dairy and the Dirty Dozen your organic priorities.
Drink at least two liters of water a day. Preferably from a reusable canteen, not plastic; we’re friends of the environment here! Limit your alcohol intake to one glass of antioxidant-rich red wine a day.
Get label savvy. Clean foods contain just one or two ingredients. Any product with a long ingredient list is human-made and not considered part of a clean diet.
Avoid processed and refined foods. This includes white flour, sugar, bread and pasta. Enjoy complex carbs such as whole grains instead.
Know thy enemies. Steer clear of anything high in trans fats, anything fried or anything high in sugar. Avoid preservatives, color additives and toxic binders, stabilizers, emulsifiers and fat replacers.
Consume healthy fats. Aim to have essential fatty acids, or EFAs, incorporated into your clean diet every day
Learn about portion sizes. Work towards eating within them. When eating clean, diet is as much about quantity as it is quality.
Reduce your carbon footprint. Eat produce that is seasonal and local. It is less taxing on your wallet and our environment.
Shop with a conscience. Consume humanely raised local meats and ocean-friendly seafood.
Slow down and savor. Never rush through a meal. Food tastes best when savored. Enjoy every bite!
Take it to go. Pack a cooler for work or outings so you always have clean food on the go.
Make it a family affair. Food is a social glue that should be shared with loved ones. Improve the quality of your family’s life along with your own by eating clean as a team.