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A Clean eating diet is trending right now. Have you noticed? But what about clean eating? Well, first off, clean eating is not a diet. It's a way of life.
In fact, eating clean is the single most important thing you can do for yourself. But, you already know processed and junk food isn't good for you, right? Even so, you may be thinking… but it tastes so good!
And trust me, the food industry knows this! Processed foods are made to trigger all the right pleasure centers in your brain. That's why you can't eat just one when you open a bag of Lay's potato chips. Maybe you didn't know this but food manufacturers now have the ability to enhance flavor through chemical manipulation.
As a result, we've gotten heavier and unhealthier to a level that's epidemic, and we can't seem to stop. We rely on processed foods and crave junk food. But, it's time to change things and take back control of what we eat and where it comes from.
So, let's start by defining processed food.
What is Processed Food?
You can probably look at a chicken nugget and realize that whatever chicken is in it, it has gone through an extreme alteration.
You definitely want to avoid these 3 added ingredients which will cause the most damage to your health. In fact, these 3 ingredients are responsible for most chronic diseases.
Pesticides can also be part of the process. When foods are being grown, they are often treated with chemicals to repel bugs and insects. That's why eating clean or organic foods can cut down on a number of toxins you consume every day. In fact, by as much as 80%, according to the Environmental Working Group.
What About Clean Eating?
But exactly how do you identify clean foods?
Follow these 7 Tips for Spotting Clean Foods
1. If there are more than 5 ingredients, look for an alternative.
2. If the food you are thinking about buying is in a package, it has been processed to some point.
3. If you read a food label and there are ingredients with names you cannot pronounce, put it back on the shelf.
4. Most foods with organic labels are cleaner than those treated with chemicals and pesticides.
5. Avoid trans fats, monosodium glutamate (MSG), high fructose corn syrup, other sugars, sodium and other salts, and white flour.
6. If you see the following ingredients, you are looking at extremely processed foods – corn syrup, fruit juice concentrate, maltose, cane sugar, sodium, partially hydrogenated vegetable oil.
7. If you buy any of the following Dirty Dozen foods, choose organic if you can, and wash thoroughly before eating.
The Dirty Dozen
- Sweet bell peppers
8 Reasons to Quit Eating Processed Foods
1. Many of them Include Monosodium Glutamate
MSG is listed under any of the following names:
Acid-hydrolyzed vegetable protein
2. They can be Full of High Fructose Corn Syrup
High Fructose Corn Syrup is found in more and more in food products all the time. It's found in carbonated soft drinks, as well as in packaged cakes, cookies, jams, jellies and crackers.
Why is high fructose corn syrup so dangerous to your health?
Because it contributes to:
Plaque build up in your blood vessels
3. Low-fat often Means High in Sugar
Many processed foods boast about being low-fat. But the process which pulls the fat out also involves adding high fructose corn syrup, sucrose, lactose, and glucose, as well as other unhealthy sweeteners.
Sugar triggers the “feel good” transmitters in your brain, which can cause an addiction to the sweet taste. Sugar can have a devastating effect on your health. In fact, many doctors and nutritionists believe it to be the leading cause of chronic diseases and obesity.
4. Low Nutrition
5. Unnatural and Dangerous Chemicals
6. Clean Foods are Easier to Digest
7. Whole Foods are Less Expensive
8. You'll Start to Feel Healthier Almost Immediately
Download our Free Clean Eating 101: Kicking the Junk Food Habit in 30 days