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The Rules of Clean Eating

Beautiful woman with glass of waterWith spring right around the corner, consider cleaning not just your house, but your diet too. Clean eating is a relatively new term, but the principles are not. In a nutshell, clean eating focuses on eating whole, healthy, unprocessed foods which boosts energy and improves your health. It’s not about a diet, but a lifestyle, that will impact you on every level, helping you get the most out of your life. Interested in learning more? Read on to find out the basic rules of clean eating, so you can start incorporating them into your daily life, and experience the benefits today.

1. Eliminate or minimize processed foods: Anything in a box, bag, can, or package, is considered a processed food. Instead, try to eat fresh foods that are whole and natural.

2. Select unrefined foods: When possible, stay away from refined foods by eating whole grains like brown rice and quinoa. Beans and legumes are also good options for unrefined foods, and honey, natural maple syrup, and dehydrated sugar cane juice are clean sugars that can be incorporated into this diet.

3. Three to remember at each meal—protein, carbohydrates and healthy fats: If you stop to think about what you consumed at breakfast, there’s a good chance it didn’t contain any protein. As we eat throughout the day, our protein intake usually increases with the later meals. Since protein has many benefits, like building muscle and making you feel full longer, it’s important to include at every meal. By making a plan to eat protein, carbohydrates and healthy fats at every meal, we’ll make better choices of what to include on our grocery lists.

4. Beware of salt, sugar, and unhealthy fats: Clean foods are naturally low in salt, sugar and fat. Removing processed foods from your kitchen will eliminate the key sources of extra calories and excessive levels of salt, sugar and fat in food you might normally eat.

5. Eat five to six small meals: Throughout the day, you’ll still eat three main meals, but by adding two or three snacks, you’ll actually prevent yourself from overeating. And if you plan to eat this way, you will be less likely to skip meals, which lowers your energy and causes your blood sugar levels to drop.

6. Avoid high calorie drinks: You may not realize how many calories you are guzzling down daily in your specialty coffee, soda, and energy drinks. Water is the first beverage choice for clean eaters, but other favorable options include flavored (but unsweetened) tea, low-fat milk, and sparkling water with a dash of 100% fruit juice.

7. Daily exercise: Exercise has more benefits than keeping your waistline trim and your muscles firm. Daily physical activity helps keep your heart, lungs, and bones healthy and strong, and it also is a great way to relieve stress.

After reading this list of clean eating rules, you’ve probably come across a few that you’ve already considered incorporating into your daily life. Spring is a season full of transformations; why wait any longer to transform the way you eat? Become a clean eater, one rule, one change, at a time.