“Clean-eating” means eating foods in as close to their natural form as possible. Processed foods found in boxes and bags are out. Vegetables, fruits, meats, seafood, and healthy fats are in.
Let’s start with the two most obvious food groups – vegetables and fruits. When it comes to these two, fresh is best. However, frozen fruits and vegetables are a close second, as they are frozen fairly soon after being harvested. Canned products often contain added sodium or sugar, so if you must buy canned, check the label for sugar and sodium content first.
Is organic related to clean-eating? Yes. The “cleanest” foods to consume are those that are grown and prepared without pesticides or antibiotics. Buying everything organic is not a must when it comes to clean eating, but if the whole point is to only put good into your body, it doesn’t make sense to consume pesticide-covered veggies and antibiotic-filled meats.
Speaking of meats, most grocery store chains have organic cuts available. They are usually located in the same section as the non-organic meats, but will likely have different colored packaging. When shopping for beef, look for the words “grass-fed.” For poultry, look for “free-range.” The packing should also designate that the meat was raised without hormones and antibiotics.
Seafood will not be labeled as organic. When purchasing fish, it is important to look for the words “wild-caught.” This designates that the fish was caught in its own habitat, and not harvested from a farm somewhere.
When it comes to dairy, technically only raw milk is “clean.” However, raw milk is very difficult to find, extremely expensive, and even illegal in some states in the U.S. The next best thing is organic, full-fat milk. Eat real cheese. Full-fat, from a block you slice or grate yourself. Real cheese does not come in plastic bags, and it definitely does not come in a log you found on a shelf.
What about carbs? When the body consumes a simple carbohydrate, it responds the same way as if it had consumed sugar. There is no additional nutrition available to slow the absorption of the resulting sugars into the bloodstream and therefore, blood sugar rises. When eating clean, foods made with white flour and sugar are off limits – white bread, crackers, bagels, cookies, pastries, etc.
There are other carbohydrates (known as complex carbs) that have less of an impact on blood sugar. Complex carbs are converted into sugar more slowly, giving the body a better chance to regulate the amount of sugar in the blood. Whole fruits and vegetables (like apples and sweet potatoes) are the cleanest good carbs to be found. Several varieties of nuts, quinoa, and steel-cut oats are additional good carb options.
So, choose whole fruits and vegetables, meats, and healthy fats… sound familiar? Yep, we’ve talked about this type of eating before… the Ketogenic Diet! While clean-eating and Keto are not exactly the same, they both focus on eating the same types of food in order to heal the body.
The Ketogenic diet emphasizes eating foods that are high in protein and good fats, while eliminating simple carbohydrates. This diet offers the amazing opportunity to heal diabetes with food. One study found that while following the Ketogenic diet, 95.2% of Type II diabetics reduced or terminated their need for blood sugar medication within 6 months!
Americans have been brain-washed for decades into believing that fat is bad for our health. This was a ploy by the sugar industry to increase sales decades ago… and it worked. Unfortunately, our nation is now addicted to sugar and our healthcare system is overwhelmed by the results.
Research has found that fat is not the health threat it was touted to be, and that refined sugars and processed foods are the real enemies of health. Processed foods are high in sugar, salt, unhealthy fats, and preservatives.
Your body needs none of those things in order to function. In fact, your body will function infinitely better without those ingredients. This in turn lowers insulin and blood sugar levels.
Eating clean vegetables, fruits, meats and dairy, and enjoying complex carbohydrates in moderation, can have a truly transformative effect on blood sugar and overall health.