In a world where the shelves in our grocery stores are laden down and groaning under the strain of junk food, eating clean can be tough. Not only are unhealthy, sugar filled, GMO infested products easier to get our hands on but next time you’re in the grocery store take a look at the price tags on said items: do you notice the steady decline in price versus their healthy counterparts? It’s appalling to think that eating clean can often come at a higher price than eating every day junk foods. Finding your way around the junk food aisles and getting your body on healthier routine can be tough at first and does have a learning curve but once you get into the habit of treating your body right it’s easier than you think to stay on the path to good, clean eating.
I’ve compiled a list of tips that I’ve begun using in my own life that I think might help my readers who are looking to change their eating habits and live a healthier, cleaner lifestyle. I hope my tips are as helpful to my readers as I’ve found them to be!
1. Slowly but surely cut out packaged and pre-made foods. Since the cost of convenience is high you should focus on buying the fresh ingredients so you can make your own healthy meals. Pre-packaged foods can also contain more artificial ingredients and yucky additives.
2. Start limiting your meat consumption and the way you incorporate meats into your meals. The bottom line is that you can get just as much protein and nutrients by eating more greens, veggies and nuts than if you were to keep pumping yourself full of meat proteins. Plus, unless you’re eating strictly organic you’re also pumping yourself and your family full of GMO riddled, growth hormone infested meats.
3. Take the extra time to begin making your own dressings and sauces. When you think about how much a bottle of dressing costs, usually starting at about $3-4, and how each one is comprised mainly of sodium, artificial flavors and other additives, making your own dressings out of things you already have at home can start to look pretty good. Plus, your own natural dressings and sauces won’t be loaded with artificial junk.
4. Don’t be afraid to shop in bulk. Generally speaking, bulk foods are cheaper than buying stand alone ingredients and are usually healthier, cleaner foods like beans, whole grain rice, quinoa and whole grain flours. Avoid boxed foods and cans unless you take the time to read through the ingredients to make sure what you’re getting is really clean and healthy for you.
5. Be selective about the organic products you bring into your home. Nobody expects you to purchase an entire kitchen of organic products and with the cost of those products high, you shouldn’t have to. Do your research. Foods you should consider buying organic and that have the highest number of pesticides include: peaches, apples, bell peppers, grapes, spinach, lettuce, potatoes, celery, nectarines, cherries and strawberries.
6. Up your water intake! Cut out juices, teas and powdered drinks. Water helps the body feel fuller which helps limit your cravings for unhealthy snacks and it also helps aid in your digestive system. Drinking 6-8 glasses per day to stay hydrated.
7. Buy fresh veggies and cut down on super sized portions. Fresh is best when it comes to your vegetables but don’t make the mistake of overloading on your portions. Even if you’re eating a clean diet, it’s hard to maintain a healthy lifestyle if you’re still eating like a champ.
These simple tips have really helped my family and I with living a cleaner lifestyle and eating more healthy foods. I hope that as you read them you can reap their benefits and get back on the road to a healthier you as well!