Clean eating is the best (and I think ONLY) way to gain and keep tight control over blood sugar. But eating clean is for EVERYONE, not just diabetics or those trying to lose weight.
What exactly is clean eating? According to Tosca Reno, author of The Eat Clean Diet, and one of my favorite definitive experts on eating clean, the following principals will jump start anyone on a road to better eating….a lifestyle of better eating.
- Eat whole foods. Stop buying and eating the stuff that is in the pretty packages on the shelf, that processed food that is filled with refined sugar, added sodium, unhealthy fats, white flour, as well as additives and preservatives. Yes, I know it makes the “food” (dead food in my opinion) taste good, but you’d be surprised how good real food tastes once you kick the processed stuff.
- Eat smaller meals throughout the day every 2-3 hours. Space out your meals and eat smaller amounts at each sitting. This will keep your blood-sugar levels even and keep your metabolism up. The book includes 2 weeks worth of sample meals so that you learn how to put your meals together the way that Tosca eats.
- Exercise portion control. Eating clean isn’t enough, you also need to use portion control. There is such a thing as too much quantity of good for you foods. Raw peanut butter is good for you! 10 spoonfulls at one time is not.
- Drink plenty of water. 8 full glasses each day. However you measure it, be sure to get in that water. I aim to get more than that because I’m active and more likely to get dehydrated. I also carry around an inflatable porta potty. Not really, but the idea has crossed my mind.
- Drop the sodas. Sodas are filled with either refined sugars or artificial sweeteners. Either way they don’t help you lose weight or maintain good teeth. They can also get in the way of you drinking your fill of water, which you do need to keep your body in tip-top working order!
- Exercise regularly. Not only cardio, the type of exercise that keeps you in your target heart rate for at least 30 minutes, but also strength building exercises. Lift HEAVY!!
- Stop Dieting and Make it Your Lifestyle. I mentioned this above so this is just a reminder that short-term dieting isn’t going to help you keep that weight off. When you make clean eating your way of life and incorporate regular exercise, you won’t have to worry about the weight coming back.
Michael Pollan said it best and I say this often.
Eat Food. Not too much. Mostly Plants.