8 Tips To Eat Clean and Upgrade Your Health
Written by: Andreea Fegan
With news of an influx of disease being aired regularly on in the paper, magazines, social media and T.V. these days (including cancer, diabetes, autoimmune issues, obesity), many people are looking to clean up their diets and lifestyles to incorporate more clean, whole foods in a variety of delicious ways. And of it can be really overwhelming if you don’t know where to start.
The two keys to clean eating are: (1) start where you are and (2) upgrade.
Rather than overhauling everything overnight, keep things simple and replace foods you already know you love. Here are some more tips to demystify the whole process, so you can get started on this healthy lifestyle stress-free!
Meat: If you eat meat, choose organic and free-range.
Eggs: If you eat eggs, always choose pasture raised or at the very least, organic, free-range.
Plant-Protein: Consider opting for plant protein more often and try incorporating a meatless Monday approach: beans, lentils, nuts, seeds, quinoa, spirulina, hemp and plant-based protein powders are a good bet. (Be sure to choose protein powders that aren’t laden with chemicals and fillers.)
Fish: Really think about where your fish comes from, as much of it is tainted with mercury or ocean pollution. Opt for wild-caught, seasonal varieties and stay away from farmed or color-added options. Have you ever had chickpea tuna salad? It’s delicious!
2. UPGRADE (or swap) YOUR GRAINS
Grains: Swap grains from processed to whole (brown rice over white).
Pasta: Upgrade your pastas from refined noodles to brown rice, bean, quinoa, or raw zucchini noodles (yep, they come in all varieties nowadays).
Dessert: Upgrade your desserts to ones using whole sweeteners like dates, dried and fresh fruits, or natural liquids such as maple syrup. There are many recipes out there for Raw Banana Ice Cream or coconut milk ice creams that are absolutely amazing! This Vegan Ice Cream is also incredible!
4. GO GLUTEN FREE
Ditch the grains: Consider taking out grains completely. Although there are many people who do not have a true “allergy” per se, many are sensitive or intolerant to its inflammatory effects on the body.
Try gluten free grains instead: Many people with any type of disease, often do better when they remove gluten. Quinoa, millet and amaranth are great options.
5. FRUIT AND VEGGIES
Go organic: If you’re used to conventionally grown produce, start moving towards organic. Become well versed in the world of “dirty dozen” and “clean 15”, opting for organics, especially if the skin of the produce is thin (like berries).
JUICE: Eat lots of fresh and raw fruits and veggies and start juicing or creating smoothies whenever you can. You can even adopt a “salad a day” challenge for yourself for the month and see how much easier your system detoxifies. Studies show that habits are formed in 21 days, so this is also a great way to upgrade your healthy habits and get in more nutrients each day.
Drink plenty of water and learn to enjoy it. We are the only creatures on earth that drink sugar and chemical-laden beverages. Your body is thirsty for nutrients and pure water.
Dairy is highly addictive and mucous forming. You can make soups creamy by adding in ½ cup of rolled oats or raw cashews (try it!). Opt for coconut yogurt, or even make your own almond milk… it’s super easy!
8. Back to Nature
Aim for recognizable food versus packaged food whenever possible. For instance, eat fruit over fruit roll ups and brown rice over rice crackers.
I hope you’ve enjoyed these tips. Take in and incorporate whatever resonates with you. We are all different and we all need different things, so start where you are. And enjoy this beautiful process.
Certified Level 3 Raw Chef, Instructor and Board Certified Integrative Nutrition Health Coach
at Little Bites of Joy
Andreea is the recent winner of the grand prize, “Hot Raw Chef”, a worldwide video competition, hosted by the Living Light Culinary Institute. Additionally, Andreea is Certified as a Level 3 Raw Chef and Instructor through the Alissa Cohen Program; a Board Certified Integrative Nutrition Health Coach through the Institute for Integrative Nutrition; and a graduate of Rouxbe's Plant Based Professional Certification. Andreea also specializes in wild edibles, herbalism, homesteading, insulin resistance and detox practices.
As a plant-based chef and educator, Andreea enjoys providing lectures, workshops and classes to encourage people towards healthy living (and thriving). For more info, please visit her website.
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