Clean Eating is not a diet, it’s simply a healthy lifestyle. It’s a way to commit to yourself, your health and your happiness. The New Year is a time of reflection, a time to recommit to goals and a time to slow down and take stock of what you are grateful for.
Health resolutions are among the most common resolutions and it’s for a good reason. Everyone wants to feel better, look better and have more energy. The trick is setting small achievable goals so that you stick with your plan. A good way to start is making small changes to your lifestyle and diet, such as choosing organic clean foods whenever possible, avoiding processed and refined foods, and consuming healthy fats like the essential fatty acids found in fish.
Here are some basic tips that you can start to implement. Even just tarting with a couple of the points below with will help improve your diet and overall health.
Choose Whole Foods
Writer and food activist Michael Pollan put it best when he wrote this sage advice and simple rule of thumb: “Eat food… Don’t eat anything your great-great-grandmother wouldn’t recognize as food.” Choose foods that are in their whole or natural state, in other words, food that has been minimally processed or refined and is free from additives or other artificial substances.
Food often travels long distances before it reaches the consumer. Buying local produce not only reduces your carbon footprint, it helps ensure you’re getting the most nutritional bang for your buck. All the extra time fresh food spends on a truck can cause nutrients, like vitamin C, to oxidize and diminish. On a related tangent, consuming fresh-frozen foods are a good way to make certain you are getting optimum nutrition. Choosing fruits, vegetables, and even fish that are blast-frozen at the source ensures that your product is as fresh as the day it was picked or caught!
Choose Organic Foods
Organic is a healthier option for you and the planet because organic farming methods focus on using fertile soil, along with a variety of crops, to maintain healthy growing conditions which produces food with more nutrients – vitamins, minerals, enzymes, and micronutrients – than commercially grown foods. By eating organic you also avoid the cocktail of over 600 chemicals currently registered for agricultural use in America.
Always check labels for ingredients such as added sugars, artificial sweeteners, artificial food colouring, preservatives and chemicals. The fewer ingredients the better… as long as you know what those ingredients are. Also beware of packages ladened with health claims because a health claim on a food product is a good indication that it’s not real food. A lot of the products in our grocery stores are no more than edible products of food science that mascaraed as food.
Stock Your Kitchen
Keep your kitchen full of healthy alternatives and ingredients so that you can whip up a healthy meal with ease. Clean eating doesn’t have to be too labor-intensive and you will probably end up saving money by not eating out. Some good go to staples to stock your pantry with include frozen veggies, rice, fish, coconut milk, fresh herbs and lots of spices. These are great options for a delicious, quick and easy meal. In under half-an-hour, you can whip up a healthy coconut curry or poached fish and rice. For some great healthy recipe ideas check out our recipe section or have a peak at the Fraiche Nutrition Blog (lots of healthy clean options).
Choose Healthy Fats
Throughout the history of our evolution as a species, diets were abundant in seafood and other sources of omega-3 long chain fatty acids (EPA & DHA), but relatively low in omega-6 seed oils. Research suggests that the consumption of omega-6 and omega-3 was roughly 1:1. It also suggests that ancient and modern hunter-gatherers were free of the modern inflammatory diseases, like heart disease, cancer, and diabetes, that are the primary causes of death and morbidity today. Today’s ratio can be as high as 25:1 in some individuals and this is making us sick. EPA and DHA are only available in significant amounts in seafood, so it follows that we should be consuming seafood on a regular basis. When consuming omega-6 oils try to stay away from refined sources such as safflower, sunflower, corn, soybean, canola and cottonseed. A really great read about omega-6 and omega-3 fats can be found here.
Choose Healthy Animals
We all know there is a lot of truth in the adage “you are what you eat,” well the same goes for animals. Grass-fed animals truly shine in the micronutrient profile. Grass-fed beef is higher in B-vitamins, beta-carotene, vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol), vitamin K, and trace minerals like magnesium, calcium, and selenium. The reasons for eating grass-fed animals are very convincing, if you want more information on this topic you can visit Marks Daily Apple (a great place to find health and fitness info) and Barons of Beef (a great local source of grass-fed, free-range and organic meats, as well as a great place to find health information).
At the core of eating clean is consuming foods the way nature delivered it, or as close to it as possible. One of our core values at Haida Wild is helping guide others back to the ways of nature, which is why we believe in quality and minimal processing. We fillet and/or smoke our product with ancient expertise, in small batches, by hand. Our smoked products utilize select species, high-quality ingredients, and no preservatives.
Clean eating is a lifestyle approach to food and its preparation, leading to an improved life – one meal at a time. With this in mind, we invite you to start the New Year off right by considering to include more quality seafood in your daily diet. Stop by our online store and check out our Ocean Wise seafood products. We deliver right to your door so you have more time to focus on other things important to you!
Wishing you a happy healthy New Years!
The Haida Wild Team