“Clean Eating is eating only foods that are as close to nature as possible. Avoiding processed foods, sugars and chemicals. Eating foods that are mainly from a plant or tree, and adding in a bit of lean protein for balance.”

Clean Eating will help you regain health, feel better than you have in years and help to re-balance your body’s fat/muscle ratio. Long story short, if you have weight to lose, no other method of eating will help you lose weight like clean eating will!

Why choose to eat clean?

Most food and nutrition experts say that clean eating is not about what people cannot eat, it is about what people could eat in order to get the optimum nutrition that their bodies need.

If you are one of those who are on their way of learning to eat healthy foods, the best valuable thing that you can do when buying inside the grocery store or super market is to pick those that are fresh, unprocessed and whole. This is very ideal especially if you plan to buy fruit and vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts and seeds, and sprouts.

Considered as live foods, being fresh ensures that the food still contain the greatest amount of vitamins, minerals, and enzymes that provides the body with optimum nutrition. Make sure that you eat fruits that are fresh, dried without sulfur dioxide or frozen without preservatives and avoid eating fruits that are canned and in heavy syrup because these have preservatives, additives, and sweeteners. Also, eat veggies that are fresh or raw, lightly steamed, baked and dried without sulfur and avoid eating veggies that are frozen with preservatives, additives, sweeteners.

Always opt for fresh sprouts and avoid veggies that are fried or overcooked. When it comes to grains, opt for whole grain products that are unprocessed, non-irradiated, non genetically modified, sugar free, no chemical additives, no preservatives and other whole grain & sprouted grain products like bread, muffins, tortillas, cereals, and pasta, crackers. Avoid products with white flour, unbleached flour, enriched flour, sweeteners, chemical additives, refined and processed grains, white rice, quick oats, instant oatmeal, and instant cereals.

When it comes to legumes, choose beans, peas, lentils, and chickpeas. Avoid using canned legumes prepared without animal fat, with chemical additives, sweeteners, pork and beans, and soybeans. Nuts and seeds such as almonds, filberts, pine nuts, cashews, raw seeds, sunflower, pumpkin, sesame, raw nut butters, and tahini should be eaten raw. Avoid eating dry roasted nuts and seeds. Also, make sure that you choose animal foods such as eggs, poultry and other meat that are free range, hormone and antibiotic free as well as grass fed. In fish, opt for those that have the lowest exposure to mercury.

Aside from this, you should always consider eating organic foods over to those commercially-produced ones. Nutritionists say that organic foods are indeed the purest and healthiest foods out there because they are not yet contaminated with pesticides and have higher percentage of nutrition.

Lastly, learning to read and check the label of the food item that you are about to buy is one of the best ways to ensure that you will be eating healthy food. Checking if the item is properly labeled—especially these are pre-packaged—is your main defense and protection against possible adverse effects and unwanted ingredients or contents.

Healthy food has an undeserved reputation for being boring or bland. Whole, fresh foods are actually delicious on their own, with no added seasoning. Unfortunately, many of us have been jaded by too much sodium, sugar, and additives in our food. But there are healthy ways to add flavor to clean foods.

Nearly all herbs and spices have very high concentrations of healthy phytochemicals and antioxidants. Scientists believe that these naturally-occurring plant compounds work together in the body to protect tissues and cells from damage and may help prevent diseases like cancer and heart disease.  When you combine herbs and spices with other antioxidant-rich foods like fruits and vegetables, their protective properties may be enhanced even more.  So herbs and spices don’t just make your food taste better, they’re good for you as well. My only advice when using herbs and spice is to avoid packaged mixes, stick to the herbs and spices in its natural state.

Here are some herbs and spices you can use in your daily cooking: Basil, Oregano, Parsley, Rosemary, Sage, Thyme, Cloves, Nutmeg, Chiles, Cinnamon, Turmeric, Cumin, Bay leaves, Mint, Garlic, fresh or dried/powdered (NOT garlic salt), and but not limited to Red pepper flakes.

HOW TO CREATE YOUR OWN LIST:

The truth is, this may take a bit of time starting out. But definitely worth it.  You will want to build a master list. I plan out my meals to cover me for a week or two.  I look at the ingredients needed and divide my list by categories such as “Dairy”, “Protein”, “Grains”, etc like above. I even have my personal list broken down by stores. As time goes by it will get easier and be a natural thing that you do.

The Gracious Pantry helped me understand label reading, shopping, and with recipes starting out. So I will provide the link to her blog here: http://www.thegraciouspantry.com/clean-eating/getting-started/

Also, be sure to check our her blog post how to convert your regular meals into clean eating meals.  For example I don’t eat beef or pork so when I make spaghetti I use ground chicken, for burgers I eat veggie burgers and because I don’t eat any gluten I eat my burgers with lettuce to replace the bun. Once I got past the 1st week or two of clean eating I now have fun with it.

To Your Health and Success,
Monica Bundy
www.MonicaBundy.com
info@GetFitStayFitToo.com

“I am on a mission to help people like you conquer better health, wellness, and wealth!”