I am definitely not a big fan of the word clean combined with the concept of eating. Automatically tells you that if there is a clean way of doing it, there must be a dirty/bad one as well. And classify food as bad or good is the creation of a mental struggle since the beginning. Sensitive minds can be influenced by this concept and take it too far, avoiding the bad foods like they would be poisonous and kill them at the first sniff or feel ashamed for even thinking of eating them, making even a point of honour their talent of deny themselves to consume those foods.
Food classification can lead to Orthorexia and dramatic eating disorders. Food banning can lead to Orthorexia and dramatic eating disorders.
Pasta and white bread are not the cause of all human deseases and the USA obesity.
Sugar is not the cause of all human deseases and the USA obesity.
Meat and dairy are not the cause of all cancers.
Corn and soy are not the cause of all cancers.
Fat is not the cause of every heart failure.
Cooked food is not the cause of cronic fatigue and pre diabetes.
Unless you have an allergy and a not self diagnosed intollerance to a certain food, you surely have no need to ban that food from your diet.
But if you think that a specific food is not healthy enough just consume it in moderation, without making your mission in life to convince everybody that it should not even be produced anymore and everybody would live an amazing thriving life without it.
I am not a crazy fan of pasta and white bread, they make me feel heavy and sleepy. Do I think is a good approach for me to avoid them like crazy, making a fuss every single time I don’t have alternative options? Nope. I tried, believe me. But alternative bread which are gluten free contain weird ingredients, don’t taste nice and are a nightmare to bake at home. And the pasta is expensive and difficult to find if not online. So my solution is to eat more rice, consume pasta with moderation and have a sandwich once in a blue moon when I miss it, otherwise I eat oats crackers and rye bread, which have a less nasty effect on me. My mom lives on pasta and bread and she has tons of energy and she is super slim as well.
So why don’t we dump the clean eating black and white mentality and we try with the healthy eating one?
Where for healthy eating we just mean that we consume as little as possible of heavily processed food and we eat plenty of real foods?
Pasta inside a can already seasoned with sugars, glucose syrup and preservatives is a highly processed food. Dry pasta is not.
Those weird white breads in a bag with gums, sugar, extra fat, super soft and sweet that they sell next to the real sourdough bread in the supermarket are heavily processed foods, the sourdough bread is not.
Beans in a can are ok, baked beans in a can with sauces and a long list of ingredients are not, THAT MUCH, which means that you are not going to die or been struck by lightening if you have a lazy day, you don’t want to cook and you buy those instead for once.
Plain greek yogurt, even though it is processed, is not an unhealthy choice, while the yogurt with artificial flavours, low fat, extra sugar, fruit jams and glucose syrup is.
Do you see where I want to go here? Even those prepackaged salads at the supermarket are not an unhealthy choice. And if an unhealthy choice is made once a week, few times a week, in the middle of a balanced diet, there is nothing to worry about.
That is what for me is healthy eating, or eating real. Eat food not heavily processed with a short list of ingredients or pure.
If I want to eat a breaded chicken breast I bread it myself. I buy the pure ingredients, the chicken breast, the flour, the eggs, the breadcrumbs and I do bread-coat it myself. The difference seems small, but it is crucial and makes the difference. You don’t need to start your day with acai bowls, to sprinkle chia seeds everywhere, to pretend you enjoy zoodles with avocado pesto and love your almond loaf like crazy. The few centenarian living in the blue zones don’t even know what those ingredients are and they manage to live a long life and an healthy one.
So don’t obsess yourself, don’t eat clean, just make healthy choice, or at least healthier.