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My 5 Tips for Eating Clean

9/18/2012 *Sara-Marie* 16 Comments

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As you are all aware, I began to change my diet a few months ago to a clean eating diet. That means that I strive to eat real, whole foods like meat, eggs, fish, vegetables, fruit, nuts, seeds, and good fats like coconut oil, olive oil, and avocado. This way of eating just makes so much sense to me and has really changed my life. I've never felt better. I thank God everyday that He opened up my eyes! Overly processed, created in laboratory, type of "food" is not real food at all, and will not make me healthier.

Along this journey, I've talked with a lot of people about the changes I've made and the most common reactions are:
Wow, what CAN you eat? 
&
How do you do it? 

The answer to the first one is easy. I can eat A LOT. There are a bajillion types of vegetables and fruits out there - not to mention tons of different meats to pair them up with. Have you looked at any of my food posts lately? I'm not depriving myself AT ALL.

The "how" of it all, is a very good question and I'm going to try to sum it up in 5 easy tips:


1. Stick to the outside perimeter of the grocery story for the freshest, realest foods. If it comes in a box and has an ingredient list that reads like a science experiment - it doesn't belong in my shopping cart. The middle aisles of the store are full of the evil boxes!
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2. Clean out your kitchen.  Take a box and throw in all of those prepackaged, overly processed foods. Find a food pantry and donate it. Or at least put it out of sight. If you see it, you crave it. Even if you're not hungry. Don't set yourself up for failure. Only keep good food around - and plenty of it!
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3. Be creative. Try a new recipe or buy a vegetable you've never tried before. Keep things interesting - you just might find a new family favorite. Pinterest is recipe heaven! Just keep your eyes on the healthy stuff.

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4. Buy a new spice/seasoning every week. Experiment with new flavor profiles and different ethnic flavors. I can't tell you how many different ways I've prepared roasted cauliflower and each time it feels like a new vegetable. Or if you're tired of grilling chicken breasts using the same boring seasonings, you'd be surprised at what a new spice can do for it and for you! I have found out that I really like typical Indian flavors and Moroccan flavors. Keeps things new and exciting!



5. Be Prepared. This is really the most important of them all. Always have good food choices available no matter where you are: at home, at work, in the car, at a hotel, at the park, etc. When hunger strikes, you have something wholesome to turn to instead of a take-out menu, drive-thru or vending machine. Believe it or not, I try to always carry some "emergency protein" for times like those. All natural, minimally processed beef jerky works really well and is easy to carry in your purse. If you're going on a trip, pack a cooler with already cooked chicken tenders or turkey slices. Fruits and veggies are easy to pack as well. Baby carrots and celery are our go-to snacks, as well as bananas and oranges. But protein is the most important to curve hunger and cravings.


I also recommend taking out a couple hours a week to do lots of prep work in one shot. Make a couple of meals and package them up in single servings to easily grab with you on your way to work.


Or prep a bunch of veggies that you can easily throw into your morning omelet or your salad throughout the week.

 


Double a recipe and freeze half for those crazy busy nights where you know you'll only have 15 minutes to throw a meal on the table. It's all about being prepared. Also, one big clean up is better than multiple clean ups!


I probably could throw another 5 tips together, but I'll save that for another day. I just want to emphasize that while this does take some thinking and planning, it's not hard. And you can do it. 

Treat your body well. 
Feed it what it was designed to thrive on. 
It's the only body you'll ever have.


Linking up with:
 A Humble Bumble
Boys Oh Boys - Tea on Tuesday HopGrowing HomeFlock Together

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16 comments:

  1. Just found you blog hopping. Thanks for sharing your tips. :) Would love to have you link this up on my Healthy Tuesday post!

    ahumblebumble.blogspot.com

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    1. Hi Becca! Thanks for stopping! I'm glad you enjoyed the post. I will go check out your blog now! :)

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  2. This is a great post with excellent tips. I have been eating fairly healthy for quite a while, but just recently began reading about and trying a Paleo diet. It's harder than my normal diet and does require more planning and prep work. Found you through the blog hop and will definitely follow you.

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    1. Thank you Gaye! I'm so glad you stopped by and enjoyed the post. I definitely recommend trying the paleo diet - it really works and I just feel so much better. Like my body is finally running like it should!

      Going to check out your blog now! :)

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  3. Tip #6- Move in with Sara and Mark.

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  4. Good advice!! I will try some of your tips even though it is hard to do these sometimes, I know the benefits would be worth it!

    Blessings,

    Stephanie

    Stopping by from SITS

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    1. Thanks for visiting! The benefits are definitely worth it. Not only have I effortlessly lost weight, but I have more energy and just "feel" better. It's hard to describe! :)

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  5. I like this post! Do you have any suggestions on how to get other family members on board with this way of eating?

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    1. Thank you!

      When I first starting changing my eating habits, my husband was still eating lots of processed foods and sometimes I would even make him a separate dinner. It didn't take long for that to get old, so I just started encouraging him to try the food on my plate and I tried new recipes that were vegetable heavy but so delicious that he didn't realize he was missing all of the other processed junk.

      After a couple of months, my husband jumped on the REAL FOOD bandwagon and now we eat the same. It makes it so much easier. Also, so many people have seen the difference in my life, that my sister, mother-in-law and other friends have started making changes to their diets as well.

      After all that, I would just say 1.) Don't be too pushy. 2.) Slowly make delicious changes that they won't even know what their missing. 3.) Lead by example :)

      thanks again for visiting!

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  6. This is pretty much what I'm trying to do too. Found you from Sits.

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  7. Beautiful tips! Thank you so much for sharing them. I love the idea of avoiding the evil inner aisles. Now if I can just convince my family to do the same. Ugh!

    Happy Sharefest. Have a great weekend.

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    1. Thank you! It is an ongoing battle - but worth the fight! Thanks again for your visit!

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  8. Your stack of containers of pre-cut foods looks a lot like mine! Thanks for all your suggestions! I appreciate the practicality of it all! I too take protein "on the go" just to curb hunger! Great post!

    Visiting from SITS!
    -Simone @ busyasahoneybee.blogspot.com

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    1. Thank you Simone and thank you for visiting! My friends laugh at my "emergency protein" but I wouldn't leave home without it! :)

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