What is Clean Eating?

What is Clean Eating?

What is Clean Eating?

What is clean eating?  To me, living a clean eating lifestyle is about getting back to basics with food.  It’s about cooking with and eating only foods that our grandparents or great-grandparents would recognize – not something processed that comes in a box.  Things that came from the earth, or had a mom.  🙂  Things without artificial ingredients or additives.  REAL food.

Clean Eating Checklists

Clean Eating Tips

  • Eat only foods that have not been overly processed, or that contain artificial additives (sweeteners, colors, preservatives, etc.), saturated and trans fats.
  • Eat a combination of lean protein and complex carbohydrates at each meal.  Avoid starch at night.
  • Eat sufficient healthy fats every day.
  • Drink 1/2 your body weight in ounces of water each day.  Add some lemon, limes, cucumbers or orange slices for extra flavor.
  • Adhere to proper portion sizes (see below).

What to Avoid When Clean Eating:

  • Avoid all over-processed foods, particularly white flour and sugar
  • Avoid foods containing preservatives
  • Avoid artificial sugars
  • Avoid artificial foods such as processed cheese slices
  • Avoid saturated and trans-fats
  • Avoid or do your best to limit alcohol intake (3 drinks per week is acceptable)
  • Avoid all calorie-dense foods containing little or no nutritional value
  • Never eat to the point of being stuffed or too full
  • AVOID ANYTHING that contains the following on the label:
    • High Fructose Corn Syrup, Corn Syrup
    • Aspartame
    • Sucralose
    • Maltodextrin
    • MSG (Monosodium Glutamate)
    • Enriched
    • Modified, Genetically-modified, etc.
    • From concentrate
  • TIP:  When you see the words “diet”, “sugar-free” or “lite”, chances are it contains artificial sweeteners.

Complex Carbohydrates from Fruit and Vegetables:
6 portions each day.  A portion is:

  • 1 cupped handful or a piece of fruit such as berries, grapefruit, melon, apples and mangoes.
  • 2 cupped handfuls of vegetables including broth based/vegetable puree soups.

Complex Carbohydrates from Whole Grains and Starchy Carbohydrates: 
2-4 portions each day.  A portion is:

  • 1 scant handful of high-protein, sugar-free cold cereals, such as clean muesli or granola
  • 1 handful of cooked cereal
  • 1 piece of whole grain bread or wrap
  • 1 handful sized serving of sweet potato, yam, banana, corn, carrots or squash

Lean Protein
6 portions each day.  A portion is:

  • 1 cup or handful of dairy products such as low fat soy, almond, hemp, rice, or skim milk, cottage cheese, kefir, yogurt cheese or plain fat free sugar free yogurt.
  • 1 scant handful of raw, unsalted nuts (also a healthy fat)
  • 2 tablespoons of all natural nut butters such as almond or peanut butter (also a healthy fat).
  • 1 palm-sized portion of lean meats
  • High quality, sugar- and chemical- free protein powder

Clean Eating Approved Beverages:

  • 2-3 liters per day of fresh, purified water (sodium-free)
  • Clear herbal tea (unsweetened)
  • Black coffee in moderation
  • Green or black tea

Clean Eating Sweeteners/Sugars OK to Use in Moderation:

  • Organic Cane Sugar
  • Agave Nectar 
  • Maple Sugar Flakes
  • Rapadura Sugar
  • Natural Stevia (plant-derived, non-processed)