Membership in the Clean Plate Club now means something entirely different...
Eating clean combines three aspects of healthy eating: overall nutrition; emphasis on unprocessed foods; and healthy food preparation. This guide shows readers how to change their eating habits, without breaking their budgets or sacrificing taste. It provides a look at: how, what, and what not to eat; how to best prepare food; how to make quick, healthy meals; how to liven up nutritious foods; how to buy healthy on the cheap; and how to eat out.
- Numerous studies showing the dangers of eating processed and packaged foods, particularly for children
- Both how-to and cookbook, with over 125 recipes
Ask the Author
Q&A for The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Eating Clean by Diane A. Welland, M.S. R.D.
Diane A. Welland, M.S., R.D., is a registered dietitian, freelance writer, and consultant. Welland is a member of the American Dietetic Association’s Food and Culinary Practice Group, incoming chair of the Nutrition and Food Science Section of the International Association of Culinary Professionals, and past Manager of Nutrition Services/Media Spokesperson for the National Restaurant Association.
What exactly does “clean eating” mean?
Clean eating means eating whole, natural foods which are not processed, such as whole fruits and vegetables and fresh meat, fish, and poultry. It also means choosing unrefined foods such as beans; dried peas; whole wheat bread; brown rice; and different types of whole grains like quinoa, barley, and oats instead of refined foods. Clean eaters avoid or minimize processed foods from a box, bag, or can with a lot of man-made ingredients. They also keep salt, sugar, and fat in check.
Is “eating clean” accessible to everyone?
Yes, absolutely. Anyone who has a grocery store with a produce department and fresh meat available can eat clean. You don’t have to go to any special store or farmers’ market to buy clean food. For example: beans, brown rice, tomatoes, chicken, and broccoli are easy foods to get a hold of and make a wonderful clean meal.
What are the top three things that someone should consider when trying a “clean” lifestyle?
1. Eating clean doesn’t happen overnight. Usually it’s a gradual process where you begin slowly switching over from white flour to whole wheat and eating more whole foods. If you’re used to a highly processed diet, it will take a while (sometimes several weeks) for your taste buds to get acclimated to less salt, sugar, and fat. Keep on trying though because eventually you will be rewarded with brighter, more flavorful, vibrant food.
2. You will be spending more time in the kitchen. Preparing clean meals from whole foods takes more time than opening a bag or using convenience foods. Take comfort in knowing that you will get better and faster at cooking your own foods at home. Plus many meals are simple, highlighting fresh herbs and spices, and I think they’re actually easier to make than many foods doused in butter, salt, and heavy sauces.
3. Clean eating is not an all or nothing proposition. Many people choose to eat clean on different levels such as only giving up certain processed foods or focusing on whole fruits and vegetables. Certainly the closer you come to following a clean diet the more benefits you will reap, but even small steps will make a difference in the way you feel. Also if you have a meal or even a day’s worth of food that doesn’t fit the clean eating principles, don’t worry. Just eat clean the next day. Following a clean diet 4 to 5 days a week may be more manageable for some people than the pressure of eating clean 7 days a week.
Are there any well-known restaurants that have “clean” recipes or menus?
The problem with restaurants is that even if their ingredients are “clean” portion sizes can be way over the top—think Chipotle. Many chain operations are now offering special low fat or lighter items. Unfortunately few of them address all the issues (fat, sugar, calories, and sodium). I would recommend starting with ethnic restaurants first, as they usually have more offerings for vegetables, whole grain breads (like nan), and legumes. Choose foods made to order such as stir-fries which can easily be adapted. Sodium is another big issue, so I would skip the sauces if possible. Salads are a great option as long as you order them with oil and vinegar on the side—no goopy dressings.
Author: Diane A. Welland, M.S., R.D.
Publication Date: 01 Dec 2009
Size: 189 x 232mm