June 12, 2013
Should You be Eating "Clean"?

Spring is the perfect time to clean your house, your pantry (here’s how: and now: your meal plan. The ‘Clean Eating’ plan adapts the culture of local/sustainable, natural and whole-foods. Eating food in its original form? Sounds to me like a great way to get more high-quality nutrients in your meal plan!


What is Clean Eating?

In general, it’s eating foods in their whole and unprocessed form, eating a variety of foods, using local or more economically-savvy food sources, eating with the seasons and focusing on the enjoyment of food and mealtimes.


Is it Healthy?

Absolutely. What is wonderful about this strategy is you can allow your food to be your multivitamin, in a sense. By consuming natural and unprocessed foods you are likely consuming more variety in vitamins and minerals, fiber, antioxidants and the like. Nutrient-dense foods like those in a Clean Eating plan are more powerful than a multivitamin ever could be.


So, how do I Adapt it?

Buy less processed

  • Check labels. Can you pronounce the ingredients? Use the bulk and produce aisles often.

 - Buy local (mostly)

  • Check out your local Farmer’s Market or CSA program to get local produce, meat and grains.

 Buy sustainable

  • Ex: Wild vs. farmed proteins more often

 - Buy in-season

  • Generally speaking, what is in abundance and/or on-sale is in-season

 - Keep your fridge stocked

  • Find a system that allows you to always have fresh and easy options on-hand. Ex: shop for produce twice a week, shop in bulk, freeze and prep ahead.

Slow down & pay attention

  • Enjoy the cooking (and eating!) of your clean foods


Clean Eating can be a realistic, but effective, way that you maintain a healthy weight and nutrition plan for life.

Keep in mind that not achieving all clean eating strategies is OK. For example, if you cannot access all your produce from a local vendor, do what you can. It does not mean you cannot still buy less processed foods, in-season or more sustainably manufactured items.


Resource: Toby Amidor, “Clean Eating”. Today’s Dietitian, May 2013.

Written by Erika Brown

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