The spring season brings with it new life and a fresh start which prompts many to take on the task of spring cleaning in their homes. This type of refresh should not be limited to just the home. Spring is also a great time to cleanse the body and establish (or re-establish) clean eating habits.
The term clean eating simply means trying to avoid consuming processed foods that are full of refined sugar, soy and other ingredients that have little or no nutritional value. Clean eating typically involves cutting out the white (sugar, white bread, pasta and rice) and cutting out alcohol; and fueling the body with healthy sources of fat (olive oil, coconut oil, and nut oils) and lots of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean meats. Doing so will have you feeling healthy and energized.
So how does one go about spring cleaning for the body? Here are some tips to help get clean eating underway:
Clean out those Cupboards
Before stocking the pantry, refrigerator and freezer with good ingredients, clear out all the bad ones. Get rid of anything containing ingredients that can’t be pronounced or things labeled “low-fat” or “fat-free”. Next, create a list of clean-eating items to make your shopping easy and budget accordingly for the re-stocking. The first trip to the grocery store when making this lifestyle change will be a big one.
Plan Ahead and Prep
Once you’ve shopped for all those great ingredients take some time to do some meal planning and prep for the week. It’s easier to make healthier meal choices when they are right in front of you and require minimal effort.
Eat what’s in Season
Seasonal eating is a delicious and nutritious way to start your body’s spring cleaning. Loading up your diet with spring fruits and vegetables like asparagus, avocado, fava beans, artichokes and leafy greens will also load you up with vitamins and minerals. Utilizing lighter cooking methods such as steaming or eating them raw is the best way to enjoy the bounty of the season.
In order to keep your metabolism strong and running smoothly, it is important to eat multiple small meals throughout the day, starting with heartier foods in the morning and lightening up throughout the day. Those frequent meals should consist of healthy choices like salads, grains and light proteins. With a little planning and preparation, you can feel good about munching throughout the day.
Get Back Up Again
If you fall, just get back up again. Despite the best-laid plans sometimes efforts get derailed. A change in eating habits, especially at the outset can be difficult so don’t beat yourself up for falling off the wagon. Just pick yourself up and get back to it. Temptations exist and its ok to treat yourself on occasion, but just ensure it doesn’t happen often and that you don’t binge. Clean eating is not intended to be a strict regimen but rather a means to live a healthy and active life. It’s all about balance.
Clean eating will require some education and should be approached as a learning opportunity. Dr. Lederman can assist you with that learning and work with you on a wellness and weight loss program with easy-to-follow guidelines that can be easily integrated into everyday life. Give Total Wellness a call to learn more.