After having been a clean eater for nearly a year, let me clear some of the misconceptions for you. For starters, the clean eating phenomenon (that has taken over the health world) doesn’t refer to washing your food before you eat it! While it’s good to do that, eating clean is a sustainable way to lose weight. You will be extra careful about the ingredients that go into each morsel.
How will I have energy?
If this question is keeping you away from switching to clean eating, it isn’t about cutting out all carbs or any one food group for that matter.
Carbs are required for energy. The question is what kind of carbs are you eating?
Whole and unrefined brown rice and oats are carbs too, but complex carbs. Certain vegetables and fruits too have complex carbs.
Interestingly, after a few days of a clean diet, you will notice higher energy levels at a sustained pace. There is value in every bite. The energy that you think junk food gives is nothing but a temporary sugar or caffeine rush. It ends up in a sudden dip when the sugar or caffeine is used up, leaving you more tired and irritable than before.
On the other hand, foods in the clean eating category have more nutrients, take longer to break down and so release energy slowly. If you are hoping to lose weight through clean eating, check out the ketogenic diet and 5-minute keto guide.
When you get started on this fresh lifestyle, here is what you will be doing more of…
- When you eat clean, you will be cutting out unnecessary refined sugars and transfat.
- You’ll get rid of bad carbs and processed food that offer nothing but empty calories.
- You will eat more nutritious food and remember that food is fuel for your body. The purpose of everything you eat is to benefit at least one body part.
- Your focus will be on consuming healthy fats; complex, whole grain carbs; natural fibre and other macronutrients.
- At the supermarket, you will watch out for items which have added sugar, salt, or transfats in the ingredients list.
- You will eat more calories than you drink. Easy as it is to juice your fruits and vegetables, the body doesn’t require colas and cans. The only liquid it needs is plain water.
- You will avoid sodas, sports drinks, and other drinks high in calories. They are high in sugar (which metabolises very quickly and poses health risks).
- You will eat lots of vegetables and some fruits, lean meats and poultry, seafood, beans and legumes, certain whole grains like oatmeal, buckwheat, quinoa, unsalted nuts and seeds, full-fat dairy specially yoghurt, kefir and buttermilk.
- You will look for alternatives for your favourite fast foods.
You will eat fruit instead of fruit juice. What happens in the juicing process is that you lose the fibre (since the pulp is taken out) and along with it goes away majority of the nutrient value. All you are getting is sugar.
Make these changes in your lifestyle and you are on the road to clean eating.
- Stop buying and stocking snacks, canned soup, instant noodles, cookies, pre-cooked packaged meals, and readymade salad dressing.
- Cook your meals as often as possible. This way, you can control what goes into it.
- Blend smoothies but in moderation. Once a day is perfect else you are consuming too many calories.
- Avoid sweetening your drinks and try to cut out milk if you can. Herbal or green tea can be a better option, but still not as good as plain water when it comes to clean eating.
- Eat 5-6 small meals throughout the day for sustained energy.