What Is Clean Eating & Is It Good For My Body?
Clean eating is getting a lot of attention lately. Whether you’ve heard the phrase in restaurant marketing, or your general practitioner suggested clean eating as a way to build healthier habits, the food craze has many people questioning where their food comes from and what affect it will have on their family’s health. If the scale or results from your annual exam suggest you need to make a change, clean eating can help you develop a healthy menu at home. The idea of clean eating is relatively simple. It focuses on the processes your food goes through from its source until it reaches your plate.
The focus of clean eating is focusing on whole, or real, foods. Clean eating focuses on foods that stay as close to their natural state as possible. Your general practitioner will suggest foods that are minimally refined, handled, and processed. Processed foods are packed with preservatives and additives for a longer shelf-life.
How to Buy Clean Foods
If you’re uncertain how to identify foods that would fit the clean eating menu, speak with your general practitioner at your next appointment or annual exam. A good rule of thumb is to stay on the outer walls of the store. The perimeters are lined with natural foods – produce, fruits, and proteins – which are key factors of a healthy diet.
Be mindful of the labels on your food. Fruits and veggies grown on farms that don’t use chemicals are marked with an organic label. Don’t be fooled into thinking all produce is made equal. As any dietician or general practitioner will tell you, fruits and veggies already sliced and sealed contain preservatives, so double check the ingredients label.
Benefits of Clean Eating
As we’re all reminded during medical annual exams, filling our plates with fruits, vegetables, and lean meats can do more than whittle away a few pounds. Clean eating supports good health, helping you avoid certain life-threatening conditions and diseases like high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. Skipping foods high in sugar and sodium is a good way to develop healthy skin, regulate your blood pressure, and keep you from feeling major highs and lows in your energy level.
How To Cook Clean
Once you get your groceries home to prepare your clean eating meals, remember the tips from your general practitioner – avoid frying, caramelizing, or drowning anything in a dressing or sauce. It defeats the purpose of filling your fridge with healthy foods if you coat them in batter and toss them in oil. To ensure the nutrients get from the food to your body, grill or broil as many foods as you can. Skip the butter and use extra virgin olive oil to flavor your meats and veggies.
It’s Not About “Bad” Foods
If you want the best health and weight results at your annual exam, don’t focus on completely eliminating an entire food group from your diet. Sugars and carbohydrates help fuel your body, so concentrate on choosing natural sugars, like fruits and raw honey, and healthy carbs, like whole grain and sweet potatoes. Sipping a glass of red white or enjoying piece of dark chocolate on occasion (unless otherwise advised by your general practitioner) can make any healthy eating more enjoyable!
See, it’s easy to eat clean! With all this clean eating your yearly physical with your general practitioner shouldn’t be scary! If you haven’t made an appointment yet for your annual checkup give us a call. We have same-day appointments and new patient appointments available within 24 to 48 hours.