Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Clean Eating- What Is It?

I have mentioned a few times in previous posts that I have been feeling good and losing weight by adding exercising and clean eating into my daily life.  I am sure most of you have heard the phrase many times.  But what does it mean?

A lot of people are under the impression that clean eating means you have to eat only organic food, or you can only eat a certain way.  I also think that the term "clean eating" can be confusing and gives some people the wrong impression.  In reality, there is no wrong way to eat clean!  Eating clean is all about getting the processed stuff out of your diet! 

There are a lot of different eating styles (vegetarian, vegan, raw etc.)- but at the end of the day it's all about striving to eat a healthier diet!  Eating healthy IS eating clean-it is eating real food!

Getting processed foods out of your diet doesn't mean you need to move out to a farm and grow all your own food.  Our foods are generally handled by others and there is some sort of "process" for them to go through before they make it to your grocery store...but don't mistake that type of process with processed foods.

Some examples of processed foods are:
  • macaroni & cheese, soup from a can, cereals, soda, pop tarts/toaster pastires.  Foods that have added/enriched/fried/colored ingredients are considered processed foods.
Some examples of "clean" foods are:
  • eggs, honey, brown rice, oatmeal, buckwheat flour... foods that have nothing added, enriched, enhanced, etc.
If you to start a garden and grow your own foods- would you add anything to them? No.  You might add natural flavors like lemon juice, sea salt, coconut oil, etc. but not yellow dye, "natural flavoring", or corn syrup.

As I've already said- there is NO wrong way to eat clean.  If you are eating real foods with natural colors and flavors then you've got this!  Become a label reader and know what you are putting in your body and what you are feeding your family.

The shortened version of eating clean:
  • You have to learn to enjoy cooking if you don't already.
  • Take the opportunity to try new things!  Try new flavors, spices & herbs, fruits & veggies.
  •  Try new things.
  • Visit a local farm market and try some seasonal produce...Or grab some frozen veggies in the freezer aisle (make sure no sauces or seasonings!)
  • Eat what you enjoy but eat for your health!
  • It may take some time for your body to stop wanting some of the enhanced flavors that it's used to.
  • What it all comes down to is just eating REAL foods!

I still have a lot to learn on this clean eating journey and my family does still eat processed foods.  The Husband and my youngest are the stubborn ones when it comes to giving up some of their favorite foods so I let them have them. 

I've been learning to enjoy cooking more than I used to!  I definitely feel like my body is still adjusting to eating clean and sometimes I do crave the enhanced flavors that I used to eat...and let's face it, sometimes I do give in, but I also notice that the more I eat clean, the less my body wants those foods!

I think my biggest challenge so far is trying new flavors, spices, fruits & veggies.  I have always been one of "those people" that never tries new things...but I am learning to at least try it- after all, that is what I tell my kids!! The most exciting thing I am looking forward to is checking out my towns new and improved farmers market!!

About the Author

Hi there! My name is Nichole!

I have a passion for fitness and helping others!

My family IS my life. I know how hard it can be trying to juggle it all. My goal is to live a long, healthy life to see my children grow up, so our fitness and health is very important to me!

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