What Does Clean Eating Really Mean?

What is clean eating and how is it beneficial? Clean eating is a way of selecting foods that are predominantly whole foods and less processed ones. There are variations to this that include excluding certain foods, like dairy, those with gluten and grains in general. Some people consider clean eating to be consuming raw food or strictly sticking with a vegan diet. The broader, more general definition is what is most accepted. While some definitions state there should be no processed food, processing includes cleaning, cutting, refrigeration and other preparation that should be encouraged, while highly processed food shouldn’t be.

Start eating clean by giving up highly processed foods and refined foods.

You can start slowly and give up food with added sugar and you’ll improve your health greatly. Americans eat far too much sugar. It amounts to 152 pounds a year. That breaks down to three pounds a week or about six cups. That’s almost three times as much sugar as recommended. Sugar is in most highly processed food and consuming too much can lead to more than just weight gain. It can lead to serious conditions like diabetes, heart disease, premature skin aging, acne, cancer, depression and more. It’s hard to quit a sugar addiction, since it stimulates the same area of the brain as addictive drugs. If you can get past that hurdle, the rest is a breeze.

Give up food with refined flour.

Refined flour is flour that has the bran and germ removed, leaving just the endosperm. The bran provides fiber and the germ is where most of the nutrition is. The endosperm is the starchy coating that provides calories for the new plant to survive as it begins growth. Eating refined flour can cause weight gain, lacks nutrients, is far more acidic than whole grain flour and even cause digestive issues. It can create a slower metabolism, stress headaches, and constipation. People who eat clean eat whole grain foods.

While some people take eating clean to extremes, to most people, it means eating healthier.

Filling your plate with more vegetables, avoiding fried foods and focusing on healthier cooking is the more accepted version of clean eating. While some have taken clean eating to an extreme and created a dietary world that is hard to follow, most people interpret clean eating as healthy eating. Getting a wide variety of colorful fruits and vegetables, cutting out sugar and highly processed food and focusing on a well balanced diet.

  • Eating clean is often mistaken for the rawist philosophy, which includes raw eggs and unpasteurized dairy products. While these foods aren’t processed, they aren’t necessarily recommended either and definitely create a challenge sticking with the program for most people.
  • Many people that opt for a clean eating diet also make sure it’s organic and free from pesticides and hormones. If you choose fruits and vegetables from the Clean 15 list, it doesn’t have to be organic.
  • Cutting back on red meat and eating more fatty fish will help you have a healthier clean diet, too. While there’s nothing wrong with red meat, including fatty fish will provide benefits it doesn’t, like omega-3 fatty acid.
  • Using products from grass fed cows is also an important part of eating clean. The milk products from these animals contain heart healthy nutrients.

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