What Is Clean Eating and Drinking?
You have probably heard of clean eating and drinking, but do you know what that means?
Clean eating doesn't mean washing your foods before you eat them even though you should wash them. Clean eating is about eating healthy foods. It is about eating foods in their natural state. That means eating unprocessed and whole foods that are prepared in ways without extra chemicals and toxins. Clean eating includes eating fresh fruits and vegetables, lean meats, meat substitutes, whole grains, and healthy dairy products.
Two Rules for Eating Clean
Rule #1: Do not eat foods that come in a wrapper or is pre-packaged. If you have to open a can or a package to get to the food, it is probably not clean. Foods that come in a wrapper, can or box have been processed. Some of those foods include frozen dinners, crackers, and sugary cereals. Foods like fresh fruits and vegetables do not come pre-packaged.
This rule does not apply to foods like brown rice that comes in a bag or box. Nuts and flaxseed also come in bags, but they do not have added preservatives or toxins.
Rule #2: Avoid foods that contain more than one ingredient. If there is more than one ingredient, it means the food has been processed. For instance, a piece of chicken is just one ingredient, but a chicken pot pie is processed with more than one ingredient. Besides, it goes against Rule #1 because it comes pre-packaged in a plastic tray. An apple is a single ingredient. However, crackers are made up of more than one ingredient.
It is fine to eat a single ingredient food combined with another single ingredient food. For example, you can eat broccoli with a chicken breast.
If you keep the above two rules in mind when you shop for food and when you prepare your meals, you are on your way to eating clean.
Benefits of Clean Eating and Drinking
People who are accustomed to clean eating have good things to say about it. They reveal that there are many benefits to eating that way. One of the best reasons for diabetics to eat clean is to maintain a stabilized blood sugar level. People who eat clean have high energy and a strong immune system. They are not at a high risk for diseases like people who don't eat clean.
Usually, people who eat clean aren't tempted to eat junk foods because they usually give up the habit of eating between meals. People who eat clean usually lose about one to two pounds a week especially if they exercise regularly.
Foods and Drinks That Are Clean
Foods that are clean are the ones our forefathers ate before there were microwaves in kitchens and fast-food restaurants on every corner. A long time ago, people ate foods that came from the ground, trees and water. They were foods created by Mother Nature that were and still are much healthier for our bodies.
Drinks that are clean are those that include good dairy, nut milk, fresh juice, green tea, herbal tea with honey and natural sweeteners, as well as veggie-based protein powder. Try to drink at least eight glasses of plain water during the day.
Foods and Drinks That Are Not Clean
If you plan to eat clean, try to avoid fried foods, junk foods, bleached white flour, processed sugar, and artificial sweeteners. Also, included on the list of unclean foods are those with preservatives, toxins, dyes, saturated fats, and trans fat.
Stay away from drinks that are high in sugar and calories. In fact, try not to drink your calories. Stay away from gourmet coffees because they contain a lot of sugar or corn syrup as well as cream. Do not consume energy drinks with caffeine. Soft drinks, milkshakes and alcohol are drinks that should not be consumed by those who are committed to eating and drinking clean.
There is no reason to give up snacks just because you are eating and drinking clean. You can choose fresh veggies such as baby carrots, celery sticks, cucumber slices, and tomato slices. Make your own apple and kale chips. Eat nuts, seeds, and dried fruits without added sugar. You can also eat tuna and low-sodium beef jerky.
Whenever you have a craving for food, eat a piece of fruit, veggies, or a handful of nuts.
Clean Eating and Exercise
Exercise can help you go a long way with clean eating for the following reasons:
- Exercise helps to boost the metabolic rate that allows a person to burn fat.
- Exercise helps people maintain lean muscle mass.
- A person looks tone when he exercises.
- Muscles and bones are strengthened when a person exercises.
- You can keep a normal blood pressure level when you exercise.
- Your circulation is improved when you exercise.
- A person is less stressful after exercising.