Thursday, January 28, 2010

What is Clean Eating?

Eating clean is eating food in its TRUEST form possible (think of items you'd find naturally in nature or grown on a farm!). These are foods that have not been chemically altered, processed or refined. Clean foods include vegetables, fruits, lean meats, fish, nuts, and whole grains. The drink of choice is good ol' water!

Clean Eating Magazine offers this list of things to steer clear of:
-Overly processed, refined foods
-Refined flour and sugar
-Saturated and trans fats
-Anything fried
-Sugar-laden colas and juices

Think of processed foods as 'fake' food, stripped of its nutritional value and masked with sugar (often high frutose corn syrup), fats and other additives to make the food taste better, which may aid in consumer addiciton to the food, and to preserve the shelf life. Now that sounds yummy!

THE DOWNSIDE to eating clean? Clean food can spoil fast - but that speaks volumes to me. Food is not intended to sit on a shelf for months/years at a time without spoiling!! Eating clean can also be more expensive since organic food often costs more at the store (and with it spoiling fast you may waste food & money if you don't eat it in time.)

THE UPSIDE? Feeling better (physically & mentally), more energy, absorbing natural nutrients (may help reduce the need to take multiple pill supplements), stabilizing blood sugar, help fight diseases/cancers, reduce headaches and perhaps lose weight! For me, when I eat clean, I can't help but feel great physically and emotionally. Its hard not to feel your best when you know you did your best to feel good! Have you ever heard anyone say, 'I wish I never ate that vegetable'? The guilt of 'eating bad' is gone!

Combine clean eating with your exercise routine and you have a powerful combination to feel your best and perform your best!

My husband and I have made it our mission this year to eat as clean as possible. Throughout our journey I'll share any delicious recipes that I find. Do you have a clean recipe that you would like to see featured on this blog? If so, email it to me at

Wonderful resources:


  1. Caryn, thanks for awesome post! The plus side definitely outweighs the negative when you think of your overall health. I know for me, I really want to set a good example for my kiddos and I want them to like all sorts of "real" foods! Can't wait to see some recipes!

    btw: Beth is doing the Birch Bay Run with us too, Yay!

  2. Okay, from now on I am going to thoroughly scrub my onion rings before I eat them. Just kidding, thanks for the good info. I just ate a banana ...and it was green.

  3. Glad to see you got the concept down Dave! Just scrub off the fried crusty part of any food and, wah-lah, clean! ;)

  4. haha, scrubbing onions...;) We just discovered quinoa - we had at a dinner party with a mediterranean theme and I went home and (tried to!) recreate the quinoa tabouli. If you haven't tried this, I'd highly recommend it! It tasted so fresh and delicious :)

  5. If anyone comes across a Clean recipe for Mt. Dew let me know!

  6. Cliff, here's the ingridients for clean Mt. Dew:
    - glass
    - water
    - lemon wedge (optional)


  7. Leslie, do you have a recipe for the quinoa tabouli? I've tried a quinoa recipe before and didnt like it so I have been hesitant to try it again. I would give it another shot if I can create the same dish you loved. :)

  8. Andrew and I are trying to be onboard with the clean eating too! He was actually inspired with a very similar concept he saw on TV.

    One of our main challenges is that a lot of our eating is tied to social events, where it can be hard to stick to the plan.

    We'll give it a go though (I'm sure it'll be a work in progress for awhile), and I'll let you know if we come across any good recipes!

  9. Here is the recipe I used for the quinoa tabouli - I made a lot of changes and can let you know if I ever perfect the recipe :) I had red quinoa at the dinner party and bought red for the recipe but since have tried the regular/yellow and definitely prefer the red...if you didn't like the quinoa you tried, maybe you'll like the other color better? Here are the changes I made (actual recipe below): I only used one carrot and it was way too much (a very small carrot or half a big carrot would be good) and I used way less olive oil and lemon juice (just added some until it tasted good). I prefer italian parsely to regular, so I used italian. We made a yogurt sauce, falafal (from a box), and hummus then added it to pitas with lettuce, soo yummy! Also good as a cold salad with lettuce/spinach for leftovers, and feta also would have been a nice addition.

    • 2 cups water
    • 1 cup quinoa
    • 1 pinch salt
    • 1/4 cup olive oil
    • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
    • 1/4 cup lemon juice
    • 3 tomatoes, diced
    • 1 cucumber, diced
    • 2 bunches green onions, diced
    • 2 carrots, grated
    • 1 cup fresh parsley, chopped
    1. In a saucepan bring water to a boil. Add quinoa and a pinch of salt. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Allow to cool to room temperature; fluff with a fork.
    2. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine olive oil, sea salt, lemon juice, tomatoes, cucumber, green onions, carrots and parsley. Stir in cooled quinoa.

  10. Thanks Leslie!! Can't wait to try it. :)