What is Clean Eating and How Do You Start? ?
Clean eating is choosing foods to eat in their natural state. Fresh foods prepared using traditional cooking methods and other natural ingredients with no preservatives, processing, or unnatural ingredients are the foundation of a clean eating diet. In this article, we’ll highlight why you should start eating clean and how you can transition into a clean eating lifestyle.
With so many convenient food choices around us, it's easy to take the food we eat for granted and assume it's healthy simply because the packaging touts its benefits. Low-fat, sugar-free, low cholesterol, these terms sound great and in fact, these are, however with many pre-packaged foods it's not only the ingredients you have to consider but how the product is made.
From food and beverage choices to the ingredients you use to how you prepare your meals, eating clean is not only about choosing better foods to eat but means you must reevaluate everything you put into your body.
In this article, we’ll highlight why you should start eating clean and how you can transition into a clean eating lifestyle.
Why You Should Be Clean Eating
When you eat clean foods, you're giving your body the vitamins, nutrients, and protein, it needs to stay healthy. Clean eating improves cardiovascular health, leads to better moods, and helps regulate weight and bowel disorders.
However, the benefits don't stop there. Eating the right foods helps strengthen your immune system, boost energy levels, and can potentially help reverse the effects of long-term dietary deficiencies that have caused you acute and long-term health conditions.
What is Considered Clean Eating?
While there are different opinions on what is considered clean eating. Natural ingredients and preparation methods are the most important factors of clean eating which means whether you purchase snacks, prepared foods, or make meals yourself, you choose the ones that your body will gain the most benefit from without artificial ingredients, preservatives, GMOs, or harsh preparation methods.
How Do You Start Clean eating?
Starting a clean eating routine is easier when you have a fridge and cupboards full of natural unprocessed foods. While some people may be willing to donate or throw out the food they currently have to start fresh, budget and time restraints can be a BARRIER for for some.
The first phase of cleaning eating is tracking everything you put into your body DAILY. From your morning coffee run, what you buy from the vending machine at work, and what your favorite comfort foods are, understanding what you’re body needs means a complete reevaluation of what you eat.
Choosing Healthier Foods
Understandably, you may not be ready to completely start over and replace all of the current food you have.
What Are Processed Foods?
Processed foods are any foods that have been modified before consumption.
While the addition of ingredients including salts, fats, sugars, artificial sweeteners, colors, and preservatives that make food more appealing and ‘tasty’ can come at a cost to your health.
This is not to say that all-natural preservatives and additives in every instance can have a negative effect. However, being actively aware of what ingredients are in everything you eat is the first step to being a better gatekeeper to your health.
However, processed products like chips, frozen and prepared meals, as well as many of our favorite junk food staples are likely to be missed not only because you're used to getting your flavor to fix from them, but they include ingredients that get you addicted to them
Unfortunately, this applies to many of your favorite foods and the only way out of the vicious cycle of eating nutrient-poor foods is to rewire your brain and behavior to eating foods that are not only good for you but have the vitamins and nutrients you need to sustain your activity and health levels.
Your clean eating diet should consist of fresh, whole foods with simple ingredients, and cooking oils, and only prepared using natural preparation methods.
Making the right food choices combined with responsible ingredients and meal choices can help undo years of poor eating habits which have led to chronic conditions.
With the proper mindset, choosing the right food, ingredients, and preparation methods help you stay committed to the Paleo lifestyle, live well and feel healthy for years to come.
Making the Right Food Choices
Making the right food choices combined with responsible ingredients and meal choices can help undo years of poor eating habits which have led to chronic conditions. With the proper mindset, choosing the right food, ingredients, and preparation methods help you stay committed to the Paleo lifestyle, live well and feel healthy for years to come.
When you're eating clean and on a Paleo Diet, fresh fruits, vegetables, and raw meats should be a staple of your eating routine.
If you do consider packaged foods, you must train yourself to read the labels on all of the products you purchase so you're not consuming potentially harmful ingredients, subject to harsh preparation processes that strip the ingredients of their nutritional benefits.
Any product that contains preservatives, artificial colors, flavors, sugars, or genetically modified ingredients should be avoided.
Starting a meal journal with recipes that focus on flavor and natural foods will help you create a shopping list of better foods.
Your grocery list should consist of raw fruits, vegetables, carbohydrates, and protein options that consist of healthy fats that will give your body what it needs without the addition of harmful ingredients.
While cooking with no oils and utilizing natural fats is one of the simplest ways to prepare food. With a high smoke point, pure animal fats including lard, beef tallow, ghee, and duck fat typically have lower saturated fat levels and help regulate cholesterol levels.
Lard and animal fats give your Paleo meals a sweet and balanced flavor and its high smoke point allows you to sear meat, and fry greens and gives your Paleo meal a crunchy and mouthwatering taste with a sweet and balanced flavor.
Foods to Avoid on a Clean Diet
Admittedly, this is a big list of products, but there are plenty of great foods and snacks that can help you stay satisfied and help satisfy your cravings on your clean eating diet.
You should avoid all processed foods All Pasta (including whole-wheat and gluten-free), Bread & Grains including wheat, oats, and barley Beans and legumes, lentils, peas, and peanuts including peanut butter.
Refined sugars should also be avoided. These include white & brown sugars, agave, corn, syrup, artificial sweeteners Sweetened beverages including soda & drink mixes, and additives.
Other products that should be avoided on a clean diet include those that are marketed as low-fat or diet foods because of the inclusion of refined vegetable oils, trans fats & hydrogenated oils, refined sugars & salt.
Paleo Snacks & Meal Replacements
Besides your meal choices, you want to have snacks that complement your clean eating and Paleo Diet routine that give you the nutrients, protein, and healthy fats that not only can sustain your activity levels but keep you satisfied with flavor that keeps you committed to your lifestyle and food goals.
PALEO RANCH is committed to providing the highest quality Paleo snacks & meal replacements that give you the essential nutrients you need.
Find the right Paleo snacks that fit your lifestyle, and your taste buds while keeping you wanting to come back for more!