Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Diet is a dirty word... try clean eating

Along with the new year often comes regret about eating too many slices of pie, drinking too much egg nog, and not getting enough exercise.

Instead of giving yourself those dirty looks when you glance in the mirror, try clean eating. I don't believe in diets, just healthy lifestyles - which is exactly what clean eating is all about!

Clean eating is essentially eating whole food by cutting out processed foods and refined carbs and instead eating the real deal. John and I have/will be eating clean all week as a way to set our bodies and metabolism back on track, and remind our brains that it doesn't need sugary desserts every day to be satisfied.

Check back for yummy, clean recipes all week long!

Some ideas to get you started: 

Breakfast: Instead of eating cereal as I normally do, I'm making steel cut oatmeal, drinking smoothies, or having fruit and yogurt with homemade granola. These are great sources of fiber, fruit, and protein (with the recipes below) so they keep you full throughout the morning.
  • Oatmeal: Bring one cup of almond milk to a boil and add one-third cup steel cut oats. Let simmer, uncovered, for 5-7 minutes. Remove from heat, let stand for 1 minute, then add in 1 tablespoon all-natural peanut butter, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, half a banana, and 5 blackberries (or berries of choice). 
  • Smoothie: Blend half of a frozen banana, 5 frozen strawberries, one cup milk (skim or almond), one scoop protein powder, 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed, 1/4 teaspoon vitamin C powder, and a handful of spinach. 
  • Yogurt parfait: Cut up a small bowl-full of your favorite fruit and top with 8 oz. low-fat yogurt. Add 1/4 cup of homemade chocolate protein granola to top (recipe below): 
CHOCOLATE PROTEIN GRANOLA (My picture shown below)
 Makes four 1/2-cup servings
1 tbsp. honey

3 tbsp. water

1 tbsp. brown sugar

1 tsp. canola oil

1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tbsp. cocoa powder

1/2 scoop chocolate protein powder

2 c. old fashioned oatmeal

 Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine honey, water, brown sugar, oil, and extract in a small bowl until mixed. Stir in cocoa powder and protein powder until fully combined. Stir in oats until they are completely coated. Spread onto a cookie sheet sprayed with cooking spray and bake for 20 minutes, stirring halfway.

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