I sat there. Lookin’ back and forth at the salad and the burger. The salad then back at the burger. Salad-burger-salad-burger. You would have thought I was motioning, “No, I don’t wanna eat”. I was trying to make the right choice. Okay, the burger has beef which I love and cheese always makes food taste better-my mouth began to salivate. Unfortunately, those are all bad for me buuuut it does have tomato and onion which are veggies. Cool! The burger wins!
Yup, my logic was twisted. I had to find a way to justify eating terribly. I wanted what I wanted even though I knew the salad was clearly the healthier choice. Y’all, this is really why I can’t believe that I’ve been able to stick to eating clean every meal for the past month! When I say I was a fast food fiend-it’s an understatement. Why was Burger King and Wendy’s like a second home? 1.) I was lazy. I didn’t have the time or energy to cook all my meals. 2.) I loved the taste of greasy trans-fatty foods. I know. I know….bad girl. 3.) It was overwhelming to think about changing my entire diet. It felt like I woke up hung over from a college party the night before and had a 10 page paper due the next day. I didn’t know where to begin. I did eat fruits and vegetables but definitely not everyday or for every meal. Now, it’s second nature and I crave natures’s candy and veggies. Instead of my stomach feeling heavy and gross after I consume unhealthy food, my body feels clean and I feel light but full after I eat.
I think it’s easy to start by just knowing what you can eat. Let’s keep it simple. Here is a list of the foods you can eat and maintain a clean diet.
Fish like cod, halibut, mahi mahi, red snapper, orange ruffy, ahi tuna, swordfish, tilapia, grouper
Chicken breast, turkey, tofu, tempeh, shellfish scallops
Lean meats like london broil, top round, porkchops, bison
Portion Size for Women: 6-8 oz, Men 8-10 oz
Fatty Proteins: (limit these to small portions, but include them)
Nuts like cashews, almonds, and walnuts
Natural peanut butter
Fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, sea bass, trout, bluefin tuna
Flours: Spelt, wheat, oat, rice, quinoa, chickpea flour
Oils: (limit intake) Sunflower, coconut, walnut, grapeseed, pumpkin seed, avocado, olive oil
Fruits and Veggies: No need to list everything. Y’all know what healthy fruits and veggies are but absolutely NO canned veggies. They are loaded with extra sugars!
Eat bananas, dates and figs before workouts. They are higher in calories and filled with nutrients.
Beans, legumes, and grains are 100% included.
Collard greens, mustard greens, kale, spinach, and basically all green veggies.
Unsweetened almond milk
Unsweetened rice milk
Brown rice, quinoa, barley, bulgur, freekah, whole wheat pasta, farro, couscous (stick to 1/4-1/2 a cup). With brown rice you can have a little more oats, rye, rice cakes, lentils, pinto beans, red kidney beans, black beans, chickpeas, white peas, navy beans (stick to 3/4 a cup)
Potatoes, sweet potatoes (4-6oz) [Stay away from white potatoes for toned abs]
Ezekial bread (1-2 slices)
Super foods like chia seeds, flax, goji, cacao condiments like apple cider vinegar, balsamic vinegar (most vinegars), reduced sodium soy sauce, reduced sodium teriyaki, reduced sugar ketchup or organic ketchup (but limit), hot sauce, salsa, herb pastes, chili pastes, tomato paste, mustards, low sodium broths/stocks, cooking spray
Spices and salt
Coffee and tea (green tea especially- has a fat burning quality to it!)
Water, you can flavor with lemon slices
Stevia (It’s been much debate about it… it’s a natural sweetener derived from a plant. I think it’s cool.)
Start by only eating the things on the list and then begin to incorporate different recipes. Eventually, you will begin to prepare foods in ways that suit your taste by adding certain seasonings and eating certain foods together. You will only learn this as you play around and actually stick to the diet. Again, I’ve never eaten fruit and vegetables EVERYDAY until now and my body physically and internally is reaping the benefits. It’s not that hard but like I did-I’m sure you’re telling yourself it’s impossible for you to do. Once you get over that mental hump you’ll be straight! Good luck!