Clean eating is such an important part of not just weight loss, but having a healthy body, too! Clean eating can help you control your sugar intake, decrease your junk food consumption, fight cravings, curb calories, and so much more. If your goal is to shed pounds or just to be a healthier person overall, it’s important that you start eating cleaner. Here are a few tips to help you out:
Your first step in any diet should be to cut out sugar as much as possible. Always start with soda and sweetened beverages, then move on to other sources of sugar in your diet: fruit juices, desserts, snacks, cookies, even the sugar you put in your coffee and tea. At first, your body will crave the sugar it has grown dependent on, but after a while, you’ll stop needing it. You’ll be much healthier as a result!
Instead of buying food that comes in packages or containers, try buying only raw ingredients. That means foods like fruits, vegetables, raw meats and fish, cheese, seeds, nuts, and legumes. You may have to stock up on a few carbs—including noodles, brown flour, brown rice, and so on—but you should always try to fill your shopping cart with as many raw ingredients as possible. It may mean more time preparing your food at home, but it’s worth it to eat cleaner!
Avoid “Diet” Foods
If it has the label “diet” or “light” on it, it doesn’t mean it’s any healthier for you. In fact, there’s an argument made that those foods are actually WORSE for you, thanks to their high chemical content. You’re better off eating the full-fat, full-sugar dairy products, as they contain mostly natural sugar and fats that are good for you. As for diet drinks and snacks, it’s better to skip out on any kind of chemical sugars, and snack foods are terrible for your health anyway.
The #1 ingredient in every one of your meals should be a vegetable. Eat more leafy greens, more cruciferous veggies, and more colorful vegetables at every meal. The more veggies you eat, the healthier you will be, and the more nutrients you will give your body. Fruit should also be a priority, as it’s loaded with healthy, energy-boosting sugars, fiber, and antioxidants.
When you’re planning your meals, think about what foods will deliver the maximum amount of nutrition possible. That means foods that are nutrient-dense, with lots of fiber, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. Foods like eggs, broccoli, carrots, salmon, wild berries, red bell peppers, and sweet potatoes are loaded with nutrients, and even if they’re higher in calories, they’re still the best choice for you to eat!
Did you know that 90% of the unhealthy food you eat is carb-heavy? Sugary sweets, drinks, snacks, cookies, chips, cakes, baked goods, breads, and pastries are all loaded in carbs, and carbs are the nutrient most likely to cause weight loss. If you want to be healthy, cut back on carbs drastically—have a serving or two of whole grains per day, plus a couple more servings of fruits. Cutting carbs can do wonders for your waistline!
If you want to eat clean, it all starts in the kitchen! Eating out and ordering takeout will make it much harder to eat clean and healthy, so you need to spend more time cooking your own meals. That way, you can always be sure you’re getting all the nutrients you need and avoiding high-sugar, high-carb foods!