Clean Eating Guide for Beginners: 7 Simple Steps to Getting Started
Here’s a clean eating guide for beginners so that you could start eating clean without feeling overwhelmed. Learn what to eat on a clean diet.
Adopting a healthy lifestyle has become more and more popular over the last decade. Since the beginning of the new millennium, people have started transitioning towards fitness, and most notoriously clean eating. But what is clean eating and how can one get on its bandwagon? Let’s go through the steps.
What Is Clean Eating?
According to Fitness Magazine, clean eating is a strikingly simple concept. It involves adopting a diet based only on whole foods that have barely been processed at all or haven’t been altogether. In a nutshell, this type of diet implies eating foods that are as close to their natural state as possible.
What do You Eat on a Clean Diet?
Raw, organic meals are the centerfold of clean eating, but you can also cook them lightly in ways that are natural and don’t take away their freshness and nutritional value. Some appropriate methods include baking, steaming, and lightly boiling. In fact, except for frying and its relatives, there are plenty of options.
The Benefits of Clean Eating
If you have sensitive and acne-prone skin, surely the following question has been on your mind: can you eliminate open pores completely? What about breakouts? Well, while an all-natural diet might not be a complete cure, one of the many benefits of clean eating is achieving better skin, along with shinier hair and stronger nails.
By adopting an organic meal plan, you can improve your health and become more energetic in the process. Moreover, eating healthy also improves mental health, which is an incredible benefit if you’ve been struggling with stress and anxiety. And to top it all off, you will lose weight as well. It’s a win on all fronts.
How do You Begin to Eat Clean?
Switching up your diet and your entire life to eat better isn’t easy, but it can be done with a bit of guidance and help. This short list will nudge you in the right direction. Here are seven basic steps to get you started on the path towards clean eating.
When it comes to grainy carb cravings, you don’t have to cut them all off. Minimally processed whole grains such as quinoa, oats and wild rice are a delicious and nutritious addition to any clean diet. And if you want to take out the big guns, then throw in some whole-grain bread and whole-wheat pasta into the mix every now and then.
Fruit and Vegetables
Fresh fruit and vegetables are the centerfolds of any natural meal. It’s no secret that they can work wonders for your health by reducing the risk of developing obesity, diabetes, and cancer. However, it’s important to stock up on organic produce only, so visit your local farmer’s market or whole foods supermarket and get those tasty fruits and fresh veggies.
Some people that adopt the clean lifestyle also go vegan in the process. But this is their personal choice, not something mandatory. Nevertheless, an important step in eating better and feeling better is to cut back on meat consumption.
If you eat your fruits and veggies, along with organic eggs, dairy and nuts, protein intake won’t be a problem. Thus, you don’t need to worry about not eating as much meat. Furthermore, red meat and pork should ideally be removed altogether from your meals. Focus on fish and seafood, which are excellent sources of essential oils and beneficial fatty acids.
Who doesn’t love a delicious, sugary piece of candy? Well, your teeth, stomach, and body in general. While a bit of chocolate every now and then and some sugar to sweeten up a homemade dessert are fine, added sugars need to be avoided.
When buying groceries, watch out for its sugar content even if it’s not a dessert. Deceivingly healthy choices such as yogurt and tomato sauce can still have it in the mix, so be careful when you shop for groceries.
Spot Processed Foods
Nowadays the food industry has become so advanced at handling food and altering its original state that many people don’t even know what’s processed and what’s not anymore. According to NHS, the most common processed foods that you can find on the shelves at your local supermarket are breakfast cereal, bacon, cheese, bread, biscuits and various snacks.
Admit it, there are at least two or three items on this list that you once considered healthy. As previously mentioned, you need to shop wisely and look out for added sugar, refined grains and any trace of chemicals on the ingredient list of what you’re buying. It can be tricky at first, but you’ll become a pro in no time.
As previously mentioned, how you choose to cook your food is also important. While there are many acceptable ways to do that, frying is not one of them and should be avoided at all costs. And don’t fall for the ‘healthy frying’ using olive oil trick either, because there is no such thing.
Bye-Bye Fast Food
It almost goes without saying that you will have to kiss fast food goodbye to truly eat and live clean. While it might be tempting to eat a burger with some fries at least once every few months, this can throw your entire diet off track. So, don’t let all your hard work be for nothing and steer clear of fast food from here on out.
Eating clean is a challenge because it involves changing the way you deal with food. You have to shop more carefully, adopt new cooking methods and styles and be more mindful of what you choose to feed to your body. It can be hard at first, but with a little dedication and patience, it’s completely possible.
Introduce fresh and organic produce in your meals, choose whole grains, reduce meat consumption and limit your sugar intake for the best results. By following these steps, you will feel happier, healthier and more in tune with yourself. Your body and your mind will thank you for it.