Clean eating is a concept that is growing fast and gaining a lot of momentum in the areas of dieting and fitness. The overall health benefits are amazing when you focus on the contents and origins of the food that is going into your body. When this type of eating is combined with a good calorie count and a disciplined exercise program, you are sure to get the fitness results that you are looking for.
Falling into the category of a clean eater is mostly about being conscious of where your food comes from and how it gets to your table. It’s about eating whole foods that are fresh and minimally processed. It can be extremely challenging at first, and you may find yourself needing to make exceptions due to the availability and costs of food. However, the cost of a healthy body doesn’t always come cheap.
The processing of food in our world today is a common practice. Unless you have your own garden, dairy, or herd of steer, you likewise are going to be getting your food from the grocery store, farmer’s market or a local farm at best. Some processing is obviously necessary in order to get food from farms and dairies to the stores for purchase, but being aware of what that processing is will benefit you and your clean eating habits.
The most important thing to look at when considering a food item on the shelf of your local market is the additions to the basic core ingredient(s). Are there added salt, sugar, and fat to add flavor? Are there added preservatives to keep food from spoiling too quickly? Are there added vitamins so that the food item APPEARS to be a healthy alternative in your diet? All of these questions are very valid things to consider when you are "clean eating" shopping.
The best thing to remember in your clean eating journey is that not all processed food is bad. The processes of drying, heating, freezing and canning remove toxins and bacteria that can otherwise build up in time, and such processes make the food safe for consumption. You can still enjoy your oatmeal, frozen fruits / veggies and pasteurized dairy products without feeling like you’re failing in the category of clean eating -- just make sure you are closely watching for additives in those minimally processed food. Stay away from the ultra-processed food, processed meats and those ready-to-heat-and-eat products. Be conscious of the journey that your food went on to get to your table. We are made in the kitchen and undoubtedly, we are what we eat!