JERF, CRAP and Clean Eating!

I had a request from one of my email subscribers to write about clean eating. Now those of you who know me will know that I’m not averse to eating cake or having a drink. To my mind, it’s just food – there is no point in labelling things good or bad.

 

But I do try to eat as healthily as possible – following the JERF principle of Just Eat Real Food.  I cook from scratch every day and avoid ready-meals – anything with a huge ingredient list is out!  I also try to avoid artificial sugars and manufactured sugars such as high fructose corn syrup. This often means that my best choice if I want something sweet is to make it myself!

The balance of food is worth looking at too – breakfast traditionally is very sugar and refined carbohydrate heavy. I never liked cereal but did love toast. Now I have egg most days and never get hungry mid-morning.
My evening meal also has a different balance – probably half the plate is vegetables and the rest is protein. It may not be necessary  to cut out carbohydrates but the portion size is important and also not relying on refined carbs such as pasta and white rice.
The other key element is drinking plenty of water – I have water on the go throughout the day and will get through a litre when I’m exercising.  When you think you want food it’s worth having a drink first as you may just be thirsty. And keeping a water diary can help if you’re not sure how much water you have – the advice is 6-8 glasses a day, just over a litre. Bear in mind if you’re breastfeeding or exercising you will need more.
If you want to go further with clean eating though an easy way to remember it is to cut the CRAP

  • Caffeine
  • Refined sugar
  • Alcohol
  • Processed food

The other things to bear in mind when it comes to health and fat loss though are all the non-food things that also have an affect. So instead of just focusing on food also bear in mind your stress levels and your sleep patterns.  I think if changing your food habits too much stresses you out not only will it be unsustainable but it may make you feel worse. Be kind to yourselves.

 

Further reading

Heal your diastasis with food!

Nutrition for the postnatal period