Tuesday, January 5, 2016

10 Guidelines for Eating Clean in 2016

We’re only five days into 2016 and already the phrase “New Year, New Me” is overdone. And while your eyes might roll into the back of your head after the 45th Facebook status you’ve read that contains those words, the sentiment behind them shouldn’t be brushed off so quickly.

While it’s easy to be a skeptic, we all have plenty of things we could do to improve our day-to-day lives and overall health. So why not start making those improvements now? And if you’ve been looking for a sign, here it is: we challenge you to eat clean in 2016!

Now, we’re not saying this will be easy; in fact, we’ve got a whole blog series lined up this month to help teach you about and get you in the habit of clean eating. Because if we’re going to make this resolution stick, it needs to not feel like a chore.

So What is Clean Eating?
It’s easiest to think of clean eating less as a diet and more as a lifestyle. The guidelines are pretty simple, but your meal plan could change drastically if you decide to make the switch. The main thing to remember about eating clean is that it’s about consuming food in its most natural state, or as close to it as possible. Clean eating is an approach to food and food preparation that leads to an improved life one meal at a time.

The Guidelines
“Clean Eating” magazine came up with this list of guidelines to help you on your clean eating journey. While they may seem like a lot at first, they’re really teaching you how to make better decisions regarding healthy eating:

  • -Eat 5-6 times a day.
    • -Three meals and 2-3 small snacks, including lean protein, fresh fruits and veggies, and a complex carbohydrate with each meal
    • -A steady intake of clean food energizes the body and burns calories efficiently all day.
  • -Choose organic, clean foods whenever you can.
    • -If you’re on a limited budget or have picky eaters, make meat, eggs, dairy, these 12 fruits and vegetables your main grocery priority.
  • -Drink at least 2 liters (that's about 8 glasses) of water a day.
  • -Read the labels.
    • -Clean foods typically contain just one or two ingredients, so put back the products with long lists of human-made ingredients.
  • -Avoid processed and refined foods.
    • -This includes white flour, sugar, bread, and pasta. Try whole grain foods instead.
  • -Know the enemies of clean eating.
    • -Steer clear of anything high in trans fats, anything fried, or anything high in sugar.
    • -Also avoid preservatives, color additives, stabilizers, emulsifiers, and fat replacers.
    • -For a more comprehensive list, Hungry for Change has come up with this list of the top 10 food additives to avoid.
  • -Aim to have essential fatty acids incorporated into your clean diet every day.
  • -Learn about portion sizes, and work towards eating within them.
  • -Reduce your carbon footprint.
    • -Opt for produce that is seasonal and local. It’s less taxing on your wallet and our environment.
    • -P.S. communEATi can really help with this one!
  • -Take it with you.
    • -Pack your lunch for work or on outings so you always have clean food on the go.

We hope you had a great New Years celebration, and we hope to help you on your clean eating journey! Make sure to keep up with us on here, Facebook, and Twitter for more clean eating tips, gardening how-tos, and communEATi app updates. We’re excited for all that 2016 has to offer and glad to have you growing with us!

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