Myth: clean eating is not easy eating. When you get in the habit of shopping for healthy food, cooking a little more and – as a result – feeling more naturally energized, you won’t even bat an eye. For those who believe eating a “clean” diet means you’re doomed to drab, non-creative cuisine for the rest of your life, I highly recommend cleaning your act for one day…just one. If you’re up for it, go for a second day, a third and so on. In no time, you’ll have newfound food favorites and a clearer understanding of how nutrition impacts your overall health.
I’ve never been a junk food junkie, though I do struggle with a weak spot for sweets. Since I have the pleasure of living with my personal trainer hubby, he keeps me in check. He has a funny no-carbs-for-dinner rule. It kills me, sometimes, but I trust his trainer instincts. And you can trust me. Eating more whole foods throughout the day (not just at one meal) is guaranteed to improve your whole well-being. For a little inspiration and ideas for all you clean-eating newbies, here’s a snapshot of what I eat in a day:
Breakfast: A green smoothie (recipe below), because I’m in love with how good it makes me feel first thing in the morning. What makes it so green, you ask? Spirulina. I use Nutrex Hawaii Pure Hawaiian Spirulina Pacifica Powder for its many health benefits. Don’t worry: the addition of pineapple and grapes really sweetens the deal and masks the powdery, earthiness of the spirulina. The yogurt also helps to make this creamy while providing probiotics and protein.
Snack: I usually work out in the mornings, so I need something to tide me over until lunchtime. My go-to is a savory-sweet KIND bar. The Madagascar Vanilla Almond has 7 grams of protein, plus lots of vitamins and minerals to aid in my muscle recovery. Gun show, here I come!
Lunch: A freshly mixed salad is quick and easy any day of the week. I use whatever veggies I have on hand. And, of course, avocados make everything taste better. Unless it’s Andrew’s precious ranch, I rarely ever think about buying bottled dressing. Instead, I just drizzle on olive oil and balsamic vinegar. I prefer a neutral but rich flavor that won’t drown the veggies. If you aren’t a veg-lover, though, you might need a jazzed-up dressing to encourage you to eat more green stuff. Hey, I’m not judging. Do whatever it takes!
Snack: If you know me or have read previous posts, you know I’m obsessed with popcorn. Angie’s Sweet & Salty Kettlecorn is too good to be true. I munch on it all day long. I buy multiple bags at once.
Dinner: Arriba, fajitas! Slice up chicken breasts and cook in a pan with olive oil. In a separate pan, sauté onions and bell peppers — I like mine well done. To sweeten things up, I add balsamic and an all purpose seasoning to the peppers and onions. In the video you’ll see I got a little funky and added salsa to my chicken and let that cook down a bit for an extra kick. Experimenting is part of the fun of eating well. Lastly, add salad greens to a large bowl, toss in the chicken and sautéed veggies, stir it all together and you have yourself homemade fajitas, my friends. It’s super easy, and you can eat the mix with or without tortillas…you know, in case your household is normal and doesn’t have a no-carbs-for-dinner rule. (I gotta love him, right?)
As promised, the green smoothie recipe…
Pineapple + Parsley Smoothie
1. In a blender (I love my Vitamix!), combine all ingredients together.
2. Blend on slow and gradually build up to a higher speed until smooth and creamy. Tip: if you use canned pineapple chunks, you’ll want to add a few cubes of ice to the mix.
3. Drink to your health and get these clean eating products for less at Vitacost.com…
Kendra Atkins lives in Los Angeles with her hubby, Andrew and puppy, Kaila. She’s dedicated to finding the best beauty products, scoring the hottest fashion looks and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Watch Kendra’s video reviews at vlogwithkendra for tips on everything from eating gluten free to creating the perfect fall look for less. For more great ideas, check out her blog: withkendra.com.