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Clean Eating Challenge for January

Get a clean eating start this January to reset your
metabolism and boost your health.
It can be hard to set new goals and stick to them if you’re not nourishing your
body on a daily basis.
It starts with the food and beverages you put in your mouth every day.  Using herbs and spices is a great way to make
clean eating more interesting and flavourful.

Give yourself a challenge to stick to it for at least 30 days, which helps
develop good habits.  After 30 days keep
going til spring as it will become a lifestyle after 90 days.  First, you will make a list of what you need
and then stock your cupboards and fridge with healthy food.
You want to avoid potentially inflammatory foods and simple carbs that spike insulin
levels.
Planning is everything – plan what to eat a week in advance so you are not
tempted to grab junk foods.

Herbs and Spices
Check your supply of herbs and spices – anything that is too old and brown
should be thrown out.
Renew the ones you really like and add new ones as needed.  Common herbs to keep on hand are; garlic,
oregano, basil, rosemary, parsley, sage, thyme, cumin, ginger.  Spices include paprika, cayenne, cinnamon,
allspice, nutmeg.  These are often
purchased dried though garlic is purchased fresh. It should be kept in the
cupboard, not the fridge.  Cilantro is
always used fresh in Mexican cooking. The seeds are known as coriander.  Parsley can be used dried or fresh. 

Vegetables

Load up on these! Leafy greens such as: kale, spinach, chard
and collards are great sources of lutein and zeaxanthin which are important
nutrients for the eyes.
Eat lots of dark green lettuce in salads with dressings using herbs above. Eat
plenty of broccoli, cauliflower, onions, Brussel sprouts, cabbage, asparagus,
green beans, zucchini, and squashes.
Butternut squash Is great in soups and stews.
Root vegetables like parsnips, carrots, sweet potatoes, beets and radishes are
a great way to get nutrient rich carbohydrates. Carrots and sweet potatoes are
a great source of beta-carotenes.

Fruit
Use fresh fruit over dried, frozen or canned fruit. Aim for low-sugar
fruits!  Avocados, peppers, tomatoes and
berries are great examples.   Eat less high
glycemic fruit such as melons, papaya, banana, apricots, pineapples. Make sure
to have enough citrus fruit like oranges, limes and lemons. Make a simple fruit
salad with citrus fruit, apples, berries with lime juice and sprinkled with
cinnamon, which regulates blood sugar levels.

Protein/Meat
Grassfed meats, Wild game/fish, and free range eggs are best. Did you know eggs are good for the eyes?
Lentils, beans and peas are good protein sources for vegetarians.

Healthy Fats
Fat is a very important macronutrient in our diet as all of our cells are comprised of lipids (fat!).  Focus on using Extra Virgin Olive Oil, sesame oil, grapeseed Oil, coconut oil/butter, ghee, avocado, coconut, nuts and nut butters. Note that peanuts are not nuts, they are seeds.

Nuts/Seeds
These are great as they often contain protein and minerals like calcium.  Almonds are a good source, as are sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, walnuts. Use in moderation as nuts and seeds are high in fat and calories.

Avoid
Sugar in all forms should be avoided (read labels, it’s everywhere), sweeteners, grains, dairy products, soy products and coffee.

Eat clean every day for 30 days. This site has plenty of
recipes to help guide you.

Discover the herbal strategies for better health


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