If you have relatively healthy eating habits to begin with, this task might not be too drastic at all, but if you are a junk food addict prepare yourself for a very empty kitchen! Getting rid of any “dirty” temptations will be your recipe for success.
Clean eating is all about being mindful and making the right choices as to what you put into your body. Having a weekly meal plan prepares you and will eliminate those drive-through fast food meals you grab when you have no idea what you are having for dinner. Having a meal plan makes shopping easier and cuts down on mid-week stops at the grocery store.
One of the best tips I have learned making meal plans is to keep them all!!! Creating a meal plan can take a lot of time and effort, but when you save them you can always revert back to them. Purchase yourself a little book dedicated to meal plans and write all your meal plans, recipes and shopping lists in there. This will be like your Clean Eating Bible, saving lots of time and energy!
ALWAYS shop with a plan, without this you will be enticed to make impulse purchases. Make your shopping list into groups (pantry items, meat, dairy, produce). Shop when you have had a good breakfast or lunch, never shop when you are hungry and everything looks yummy to you.
Buying Organic is great but not everyone can afford to do so. To reduce your exposure to toxins at least try to buy Organic from the “dirty dozen” list, a list of pesticide-contaminated produce. To ensure freshness and optimum nutrition, pick up produce that is in season and locally grown. Fresh-picked fruits and veggies taste better and last longer so whenever possible visit your local farmers markets.
Your shopping trips might take a little longer in the beginning but as time goes by this will change. Reading labels is crucial to make sure there is no added sugars and everything listed is recognizable on your clean eating list. REMEMBER don’t be fooled when a product changes their label they most likely have changed their ingredients, scan through this again to make sure its all clean.
One of the most efficient cooking strategies to save money and time is to make double batches of your favorite recipes and freeze the extra portions in sealed containers. There will be days where there is no time to cook and this of course calls for frozen leftovers.
Depending on your beverage choices you could be adding an extra 500-600 extra calories per day. Drinking coffee with cream and sugar, sodas, fruit juices are all habits you should eliminate when eating clean. Drink as many herbal teas and water as possible to help eliminate toxins from the body.
Going meatless once a week may reduce your risk of chronic preventable conditions like cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and obesity. And going meatless once a week can also help reduce our carbon footprint and save precious resources like fossil fuels and fresh water.
Cooking clean will allow you to taste the unique flavors of fresh food, so you can gain a new appreciation for your ingredients and the combinations of herbs, spices and other seasonings.