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Clean Eating

What is Clean Eating?

 

The soul of clean eating is consuming the food the way nature delivered it, or as close to it as possible. It is not a diet; it's a lifestyle approach to food and its preparation. It is about eating real food, for a healthy, happy life.

Include a lean protein, plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables, and a complex carbohydrate with each meal. This keeps your body energized and burning calories efficiently all day. Get label savvy. Clean foods contain short ingredient list. Any product with a long ingredient list is likely human-made and not considered clean. Avoid processed and refined foods such as white flour, sugar, bread and pasta. Enjoy complex carbs such as whole grains instead.  Know your enemies. Steer clear trans fats, fried foods or food high in sugar. Avoid preservatives, color additives and toxic binders, stabilizers, emulsifiers and the fat replacers.Consume healthy fats (essential fatty acids) everyday. Learn about portion sizes and work toward eating within them. Reduce your carbon print. Eat produce that is seasonal and local. It is less taxing on your wallet and the environment. Consume humanely raised, local meats and ocean-friendly seafood. Practice mindful eating. Never rush through a meal. Food tastes best, when savored. Enjoy every bite.

Take it to go. Pack a cooler for work or outings so you always have clean eats on the go.

Reference: Clean Eating Magazine - Mediterranean Diet Edition Jan 2022

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Mediterranean Diet

 

The Mediterranean diet is on of the healthiest ways of eating which is also proving to be especially important for heart and brain health, both now and into the future. The health benefits of the Mediterranean diet are almost endless. This particular diet can potentially slow the aging process, lower your mortality risk, improve your sleep, better your heart health and more, meaning it's a hugely beneficial way of eating. Sticking with Mediterranean diet could also help you keep your brain healthy as you grow older. The research showed that the people in certain countries around the Mediterranean Sea, had very little heart disease compared with Americans. The researchers also noted the habits of those in Mediterranean countries, such as eating with others, making the lunch the main meal, little to no snacking, frequent daily walking and regular siestas.

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Reference: Clean Eating Magazine - Mediterranean Diet Edition Jan 2022 

What to eat?

Eat Full-Fat Dairy.Contrary to what you think, eating dairy fat is the main source of odd-chain saturated fats, which have been linked to a 50% lower risk of type 2 diabetes, according to a 2016 study published in the journals.

Embrace plant-base fiber foods. In addition to the fiber in plant foods, experts agree that plant-based fatty foods, such as nuts and seeds, are most beneficial to cardiovascular system.While snacking on the ususal varieties such as almonds, walnuts and pumkin seeds is a good way to take advantage, don't forget about the benefits of  omega-3-rich seeds such as chia, flax, hemp etc.

Use Extra Virgin Olive Oil as your main oil. One unwavering tenet of Mediterranean Eating is the regular use of Olive Oil. Seek out high-quality, cold pressed extra virgin olive oil, which means the oil was extracted mechanically but not chemically.

Eat plenty of organic fruits and vegetables.There is no arguing the benefits that eating plenty of produce can bring. The studies have shown that organic produce often contains higher levels of antioxidants and fewer pesticide residues.

Eat whole grains, focus on ancient grains. When you eat whole grains, you reap the benefits of the full nutrition profile of a grain, which include vitamins, minerals, fibers, antioxidants, proteins and healthful plant compounds. Refined grains, such as white flour used to make bagels, breads and desserts, don't contain the bran and the germ, stripping away the majority of grains' nutrients. Recently, research has brought attention to a special type of whole grain called ancient grains, a group of grains that have been little changed by selective breeding over millennia. Eating ancient grains could help lower cholesterol and blood glucose.

Eat yogurt and other fermented foods. Without fermentation, parties would lack of cheese and pickles, not to mention wine and beer. Thank goodness for this ancient preservation method, which converts carbohydrates to organic acids or alcohol and saves us from sober soirees. Be aware that many fermented foods don't contain probiotics due to pasteurization.Seek out for fermented foods with live active bacterial cultures and fermented foods sold in refrigerated section, or make your own.

Be a good steward of the Earth. You may be surprised to learn that the biggest impact you make on the environment comes form the foods you eat. It is easy to understand that shopping for locally produced food helps support growers and manufacturers in your community. Additionally, the life cycle of food (from growing and processing to transporting and selling) produces a smaller carbon footprint when those items travel just a few miles versus thousands. By choosing more locally grown foods, you can reduce demand for chemical fertilizers un meat and dairy production, industries that account for the majority of emissions.

Eat sustainable fish, rich in Omega-3 fatty acids. A steady recommendation of the Mediterranean diet for decades has been included moderate amounts of protein from fish. But new rules have you seeking out seafood that is healthy for both you and the ocean. The best choices for well-being are those high in heart-healthy, anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids, ahile the sustainability of the oceans relies on selecting seafood that preserves ocean diversity and regeneration.

Put grains on your radar. Kick refined grains to the curb. The Mediterranean diet focuses on whole varieties only, reducing your risk of stroke, diabetes, heart disease and weight gain, numerous studies show. Bulgur: The Middle Eastern grain contains the anti-inflammatory antioxidant betaine and is full of fiber and low in calories, at 76 calories per half-cup cooked. Farro: Farro is full zinc, iron, fiber and the B vitamins that help your body make energy; it packs a protein punch, too. Whole-Wheat Bread: Bread has gotten a bad rap, but of you are eating whole wheat and passing on on the preservative-laden packed stuff, you've got a 17% longer lease on file, a 2015 BMC Medicine article shows. Look for varieties labeled 100% whole wheat - or bake you own.

Fill up on beans & legumes. Beans and legumes can help control blood sugar, improve weight control and lower blood pressure. The Mediterranean region has long relied on beans and legumes for adding protein and fiber to soups and stews. Chickpeas: Studies show that consumption of plant-based, fiber-rich foods such as chickpeas can help obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease and certain types of cancer. Lentils: Adding these legumes to your diet can help beat high blood pressure, according to research presented at the American Heart Association's 2013 annual conference. Fava Beans: Many studies report fava beans can boost your levels of  dopamine, the chemical messenger that powers the brain's reward and pleasure centers while managing movement and emotional responses.

Choose fruits & veggies with SuperPowers. Fresh produce is packed with nutrients that nurture your heart while staving off stroke, cancer and weight gain from energy-dense foods, reports the CDC. Get familiar with these Mediterranean favorites: Pomegranates can help to control hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar, as published in Advanced Biomedical Research.The can also help protect against oxidative damage due to their high antioxidant content. Parsley: More than a pretty garnish, parsley contains a powerful compound called flavone apigenin that combats oxidative stress, Danish researchers have reported. Grapes: Red or purple grapes can help you burn fat better by stimulating certain proteins, warding off  metabolic disorders, according to Oregon State University study. Arugula: Throw a couple of cups pf Arugula into you next salad; a compound in this peppery green called erucin can stop the growth of precancerous and cancerous cells, reports a 2014 article in Science journal. Egglant: Eating eggplant can lower your risk of cancer, skin diseases, and other life threatening complications because of an antioxidant called nasunin that's found in the vegetable's peel.

Know your fats. Oils, nuts and other healthy fats, known for their powerful anti-inflammatory properties, get a prominent place in the Mediterranean diet. Olives and Olive Oil: Choose extra-virgin olive oil for you salad, as a recent study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America reveals that the nitro fatty acids released when leafy greens meet olive oil are what help make the Mediterranean diet so healthy. A 2015 study adds to the bountiful research on the benefits of olives, showing that a compound in extra-virgin olive oil called oleocanthal kills cancer cells. Almonds: Nuts such as almonds "have a beneficial impact on many cardiovascular risk factors", thanks to in part of their high content of the amino acid L-arginine and antioxidant content. Walnuts: Researchers form UCLA found you can improve your memory by snacking on just a handful of walnuts - the only nut that's a significant source of the fatty acid alpha-linolenic acid. Avocados: Eating avocados, rich in monounsaturated fatty acids, in associated with a better overall diet, nutrient intake and lower risk for metabolic syndrome.

Reference: Clean Eating Magazine - Mediterranean Diet Edition Jan 2022

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