This article about clean eating is not a diet plan. It is suggestions for you to think about when you want to make changes to your lifestyle when it comes to the food you are eating. You will notice you become more energised, healthier and interested in taking care of yourself. A benefit of clean eating can be weight loss.
What does clean eating mean for you? For me it means a healthy way of eating, namely eating lots of fruit, vegetables, dairy products, fish. No unprocessed food, no junk food or fast food and cooking in very little fat/oil. If I do cook in oil it is olive oil or coconut oil. It is interesting to note that foods like steak, chicken and even some fish have their own natural juices and you don’t need to add oil to the cooking process. Other things I do is to drink alcohol in moderation and drink plenty of water.
How to get started
The first thing to decide is what exactly clean eating means for you and your family and being aware of your budget the foods available.
Our attitude to food also has an influence on what we eat.
The foundation of clean eating is choosing whole foods and foods in their less processed states—choosing from vegetables, fruits, whole grains, pulses (beans, lentils, and peas), dairy, nuts, seeds, and high-quality animal and plant proteins. When possible, food choices are organic and based on what’s in season, readily available and within your budget.
Clean eating to you may mean choosing to eat healthy during the week and having fast food on the weekend. You can modify this to suit your lifestyle, however your overall goal is to eat healthier.
Whatever you choose the changes you make will make a difference then you can build on these changes when you can notice the difference to the way you feel.
Write a Shopping List
Plan your meals and write a grocery list. Modify the list to suit your personal preferences or your families preferences, also your budget.
If there are items on the list you wish to purchase and your budget doesn’t allow buy the items over weeks or months.
Thankyou to HealthyandHealthyMama for this sample shopping list. The list is a sample only, modify this list to suit your family and yourself and your budget. Again it may be a gradual process because you have to add several of these foods to your pantry.
Read the Labels
When you are shopping read the lables. There are several foods on the market that have reduced salt, even vegemite, buy the 40% reduced salt. Tomato sauce is available in reduced salt.
Check cereal and even soups for sugar content. It is surprising the amount of sugar you will find in these foods.
Don’t underestimate drinks
Choose suitable drinks for you and your family. Read the labels for sugar content and salt content. You will be surprised how much sugar is in these drinks. Find a low sugar and low salt drink that is suitable for you.
Encourage your family and yourself to drink water this is the best thing for your body. When you are going to the gym or participating in sports drink water. There are so many “health” drinks and gels that are full of sugar.
Cook your own Meals
The way foods are cooked has an effect on the nutritional value. Using the barbecue, fat free cooking, air frying and steaming vegetables are ways to keep your food healthy.
If you choose to eat out or have takeaway choose healthy options. Some fast food places offer healthy food and most restaurants have healthy choices on the menu. Choose steak and salad or grilled fish and salad or steamed vegetables. Stay away from sauces, deep fried foods and those that are cooked in batter.
What is the 80/20 Rule?
Another option is the 80/20 rule. It allows flexibility and breathing space and gives you time to think about how these changes are going to positively affect your health and wellbeing.
- Eat clean 80% of the time
- Eat dirty the other 20%
It’s a “rule” that is designed for moderation and maintenance. It not only allows you to enjoy the foods you love but encourages you to do so. It’s a plan that allows you to enjoy eating healthy most of the time and also enjoy special treats guilt-free.
With the 80/20 rule, there are no hard-and-fast rules to follow. It’s simply a guideline to lead you to better eating habits, which can ultimately help you reach and maintain your healthy lifestyle.
If you have been slowly developing poor eating habits over a period of time changing these habits gradually is more likely to be effective.
Don’t beat yourself up if you make gradual changes or slip up here and there, particularly in the beginning. The important thing is that you are doing something to eat foods that are better for your health and your body.
Check the post https://jilliesblog.com/what-is-clean-eating-2/ for more details on clean eating.