Kickstart Your Healthy Lifestyle

Updated: Mar 25, 2020

Are you considering moving to clean, healthier eating, but can't seem to find the time to start? It may be that clean eating sounds like an entire lifestyle shift, one that requires proper planning and proper initiation. You may be putting it off until you get a few days off from work or when that one big project is over. You will keep looking for reasons to put off change until you realize that you can just breakdown that change into smaller pieces and start integrating it slowly into your life. You will not be asked to change everything in order to live better and brighter; you only need to remember a few things as guiding principles to set out on a new journey.

One of the most important aspects of clean eating is what you choose to eat. That does not mean just planning meals according to the "food pyramid;" it means that whatever you choose to eat, the closer to its natural state, the better it is for you. Try to avoid foods that have been refined, processed, or preserved. It is always better to go natural to benefit from nutrients from the food and without the chemicals or preservatives.

When you are trying to eat clean or live a healthier lifestyle, it is also a good idea to eat organic (when possible). In this day and age, enhancements and hormone treatments have found their way into all kinds of foods. This ends up. having an adverse effect on your health, even if you are eating the food you should in all the right quantities. If you can't eat organic all the time, follow the clean 15 and the dirty dozen.

The "Dirty Dozen" is a list of produce that was identified by the Environmental Working Group as having the most pesticide residue, when possible, it is important to buy organic versions of the following: strawberries, spinach, nectarines, apples, grapes, peaches, cherries, pears, celery, tomatoes, sweet bell peppers, potatoes.

The "Clean Fifteen" is a list of produce that was identified by the Environmental Working Group as the least likelihood to contain pesticide residue, meaning that you don't have to stress about always buying organic of the following: avocados, sweet corn, pineapples, cabbage, onions, sweet peas, papayas, mangos, eggplant, honeydew, kiwi, cantaloupe, cauliflower, broccoli.

Always read labels. They give away everything you need to know about the food you are buying. In general, the more ingredients a product contains, the higher chances there are that food is highly processed. Even if you try eating healthy, there is a chance that the products you buy may contain preservatives, artificial sweeteners, and colors that make the healthy dish unhealthy. Read the label to make sure that the yogurt you add to your bowl of berries is not filled with added sugar!

The simplest trick to clean eating is to remember that eating clean equals eating greens. This is the bare minimum to jumpstart your healthy lifestyle. Try your hardest to incorporate leafy greens into whatever you are preparing for healthy servings of vitamins A, C and E, as well as increased fiber, which aids your digestion. Remember, your body needs fiber in order to properly rid of waste, and I'm not talking about the fiber powders you can buy from the supplement store, I'm talking real, plant based fiber! If you are having trouble with going to the bathroom, try adding natural sources of fiber from vegetables and fruit and watch the changes. When eating greens, add them to everything! Add a cup of spinach or frozen cauliflower to your morning smoothie, have a salad for a snack and pack your lunch and dinner full of veggies of all colors.

Thus far I have talked about adding things in to kickstart your healthy lifestyle, now I am going to get into omission. One of the simplest things you can omit for maximum effect is artificial sugar. Start identifying all of the things that contain artificial sweeteners. Ditch that can of soda, say no to the candy, and you are on your way to a healthier lifestyle. An occasional soda or piece of candy is fine, but daily added sugar can wreak havoc on your blood sugar levels, your gut microbiome and your hormones. Watch how your energy stabilizes and your mood lifts when you leave out artificial sugar.

Living a healthy lifestyle and eating clean does not have to be difficult or intimidating. Start small and implement easy, gradual changes in your regular eating habits to get yourself on the right path towards better health and better digestion.

Need help coming up with a clean eating plan that is specific to your body and your goals? Reach out to me to schedule your free 30 minute consultation

To your health and happiness,

Nicole Ritter

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