The easiest way to maintain good health and lose weight is to adjust your diet to include the most nutrient-dense foods and exclude high-calorie food with no nutritional value. This sounds simple, but can prove to be easier said than done. Darin Olien and Isabelle Daikeler, co-creators of Shakeology, have decided to simplify eating clean by providing these 6 essential tips to master clean eating and stay focused on your health-related goals!
1. Make fresh fruits and vegetables the center of your diet.
They’re dense with vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients, and fiber that your body needs! They’re also the perfect way to get the carbohydrates necessary to fuel your day without any of the health problems associated with processed, nutrient-depleted “bad” carbs (such as refined flour, bread, and chips). Fresh fruits and vegetables are also an especially strong source of antioxidants, which are vital for dealing with the stress of everyday life. And whenever possible, choose organic (which means it contains no pesticides or chemicals that can wreak havoc on your health).
2. Be picky about your proteins.
When we eat protein, its broken down into amino acids—our bodies’ building blocks—so where we get it from is important. Choose only the healthiest, leanest protein sources, and go organic, whenever possible. People sometimes mistakenly believe that animal products are the only way to get protein. Not true! In fact, plant-based protein can be especially easy for your body to break down and utilize. Seeds, nuts, kale and other leafy greens, beans and other legumes, amaranth and other whole grains, quinoa, and tempeh are important for a healthy diet.
3. Don’t be afraid of “good” fats.
Fat is another important fuel source. It also helps you feel full and it transports important nutrients into your body. The trick is to avoid processed, oxidized, and hydrogenated fats while getting the right balance of good fats, especially fatty acids. The best way to do this is to avoid fried and fatty packaged foods while eating moderate quantities of raw nuts (not salted or roasted), seeds, avocados, olives and olive oil, coconut oil, and lean proteins.
4. Keep hydrated.
Water is critical to flushing out toxins, helping to absorb nutrients, and keeping the body running smoothly. We recommend that you drink half your weight, in ounces, every day. So if you weigh 150 pounds, drink 75 ounces of pure, filtered water. We recommend distilled water with a pinch of Himalayan salt added. Or tap water filtered through a reliable reverse osmosis or carbon filtration system. Much of the bottled water out there isn’t any cleaner than tap water, so invest in a stylish BPA-free plastic, high-grade stainless steel, or glass reusable bottle. They may seem pricey, but they’ll pay for themselves in a couple of weeks.
5. Stay away from the junk
This may seem like the hardest part of clean eating, but after a few weeks of clean eating and Shakeology, you’ll be surprised by how packaged foods that contain artificial sweeteners, colors, flavors, and preservatives don’t even taste good anymore.
6. Eating right is not about rigidity.
There is no single perfect way to eat clean. Some people thrive on a vegan diet. Others thrive on a meat-based regimen such as Paleo. Finding out what works for you and what will help you achieve your personal goals is just a matter of exploration. Pay attention to how your food makes you feel, keep a food journal, don’t be afraid to try new plans, and get in touch with what makes you thrive. Just make sure to keep it clean.