My food philosophy is pretty simple: eat clean. What does that mean?! Eating whole foods that are unprocessed and as close to their original state as possible. This means eating more fruits and vegetables. Choosing whole grains over bleached or processed ones. Getting protein from lean meats, legumes, and low-fat dairy products. Choosing snacks such as raw almonds vs. a bag of potato chips. Limiting soda and alcohol intake. Eating in moderation. Here is a great graphic by rebeldietician.us explaining the basics of “clean eating”.
Now don’t get me wrong, I enjoy sweets and junk food as much as the next guy. I am definitely not saying I stick to this plan 100% of the time. I try to eat out very little and make as many meals at home as I can. However, I do love trying new restaurants and, let’s just say, trying new restaurants rarely coincides with eating clean. That is ok. I will say this over and over and over and over… it is all about balance. Eating healthy, clean foods makes me feel good. On the flip side, going out to new restaurants and trying new foods makes me happy. If I tried a new restaurant every night then I would probably weight 500 pounds. I don’t want to weigh 500 pounds (it would not make me happy), so I change the way I eat on a daily basis to balance out the indulgences.
I am also a firm believe that “abs are made in the kitchen”. Plenty of people have six packs. Too many people have six packs hidden under a layer of fat. Eat clean and it will help you get lean. As important as exercise is, remember: you cannot out train a poor diet. How you eat makes all the difference in how your body looks. If losing weight is not your goal, that is alright. Eating healthy can also help you train harder and lift heavier by providing your body with the proper fuel it needs to get to the next level.
It might be overwhelming trying to adopt a clean eating lifestyle. Try making small changes here and there. Add extra veggies to your breakfast scramble, eat an apple with a tablespoon of peanut butter in the afternoon at work, increase your water intake. Trying to do too much in a short amount of time could leave you frustrated to the point of stopping the whole thing and reverting back to your old ways. This is a marathon, not a sprint.
I thought this quote pretty much summed up how I feel about eating. You can enjoy life (and food!) and be healthy at the same time.
I am happy to answer any questions you have on eating clean. If you are not sure what foods are “clean” and what foods are not-so-clean, just ask!
What are your favorite clean eating foods?