05 Nov Your Guide To Clean Eating
An integral part of our 5 week Online Bootcamp is to ensure we equip you with the information and tools to continue your health and fitness journey long-term beyond the program. Traditional bootcamps are often heavily focused on exercise, however for me your success is more holistic. We look at fitness, nutrition and lifestyle. Given that you can’t outrun a bad diet and food builds the cells you live in, I wanted to put together a simple guide to clean eating that will help you gain a better understanding of the importance of nourishing your body correctly and how to maintain it in the long-term. Clean eating is a simple way you for you to stay lean, strong, healthy and feel great!
No doubt you have heard me use the saying ‘Don’t eat anything your great-grandmother wouldn’t recognise as food’! That’s essentially what clean eating is. It’s not about whether you’re rockin’ it paleo style or a vocal vegan. The basic premise of clean eating is to consume food in its natural form or as close to it as possible. That means no lengthy ingredient labels, no numbers and no words you don’t know.
Clean eating isn’t…
Firstly, I want to clear up what clean eating isn’t as many find it confusing, especially when facing so many gimmick eating models.
Clean eating isn’t a diet. This is so important to understand as clean eating is a lifestyle change, not a short-term fix. It is not a diet that lasts a month, helps you gain impressive results but leaves you feeling deprived or hungry. Fad diets are not designed to be maintained long term.
Clean eating is a way of life that will encourage you to have a better relationship with food and have a greater sense of nourishing your body.
There is little emphasis on cutting calories as there is about making the appropriate food choices. Cleaning eating isn’t about skipping meals or adapting the frequency you eat. You also don’t need to buy into any supplements, books or membership plans to get begin clean eating.
Above all, clean eating isn’t about depriving yourself of the foods you love. It’s ok, if you want to enjoy that slice of chocolate cake. You’re not going to be breaking any rules or falling off the diet wagon. Clean eating isn’t about being obsessive or punishing yourself for eating a ‘sometimes’ food.
How to adopt this way of eating
Sounds simple right? It is!! Let’s continue our guide to clean eating by talking about how you can start your journey of clean eating and make it a habit. You might be surprised at just how easy it is to adopt this way of eating and how much you enjoy it.
1. Select whole foods
As mentioned the most important principle of clean eating is that you consume foods in their most natural state. That means purchasing whole fresh apples over apple juice or making a soup with real ingredients rather than one in a can.
2. Add colour to your plate
Making the effort to get a variety of colours on your plate not only will ensure you nourish your body with key nutrients, it also makes your meals more visually friendly.
3. Shop locally
Instead of automatically heading to your local supermarket, start making plans to explore local markets or farms for your food. This ensures your food hasn’t travelled for miles around the country before it reaches you. Remember fresh is best as more nutrients are maintained it will also save you money. Local is season produce is going to be much cheaper than courgettes flown in from over the other side of the world.
4. Avoid processed foods
A good way to avoid falling into the trap of eating processed foods is to walk the perimeter of the supermarket and only purchase products with one ingredient. For example an onion, a bulb of ginger and honey verses a honey ginger marinade in the centre isle. (check out the ingredient list on one of those, its enough to freighten you! Not to mention the sugar) Start becoming aware of what is really going in your food. Read the labels and in doing so, don’t just look at the calories, look at what is actually in the product. If you don’t know what one of the ingredients are or there is a long list, put it back on the shelf.
5. Experiment in your kitchen
A major element of clean eating is creating a better relationship with your food. Start to experiment with your produce and recipes. Step outside your comfort zone and try a new vegetable or spice. Sure, you are probably going to have some fails, but this experimentation will help expand your repertoire of healthy food.
So there is my run down of what clean eating means to me. I don’t label the way I eat or put myself into a diet category. I simply eat what works for my body and keep it whole real foods. This is by far the best approach for long term sustainable health.