For years my daily diet has consisted of sodas, packaged sweets, fast food, and chips. After spending a weekend doing nothing but watching documentaries like FOOD INC. and FORKS OVER KNIFES, I finally decided it was time for a change. Every few days I would make a small change and now that I am fully on a clean eating diet I have lost over 10 pounds in the past week and a half and have more energy than ever. Here are some ways to get started yourself:
Water. The first thing that I did was completely cut out sodas, coffees, and juices in favor of water. It was hard at first because I was so used to the sugars and caffeine but so worth it. If you aren’t ready to fully give up your favorite drink try a different approach. Start your day with a cup of water, before you eat or drink anything else simply have a glass. Then replace most beverages with water. You can still have your coffee or soda, but look at it as a treat rather than a necessity.
Fruits and Vegetables. Obviously for a plant based diet you are going to be eating a lot of fruits or vegetables but you don’t have to go crazy all at once. For the first week try slowly incorporating more into your diet. Maybe the first day start adding a banana for breakfast and then begin bring carrots to snack on in the office. Instead of ranch try some healthier options like hummus for dipping or a healthier dressing. Next try starting lunch and dinner with vegetables of your choice before eating the rest. If you keep making small changes, eventually you will get to the point where you will be eating a healthy amount of fruits and veggies.
Grains. For me grains were the easiest swap to clean up. I switched my bread from white to whole wheat the first week and then my pastas followed. Reading the labels, however, can be tricky. I picked up one box of whole grain pasta and later saw that it was made with 51% whole grain (which technically makes it whole grain instead of regular). The next time I went out I made sure to find a 100% whole grain package.
Meat. I personally don’t eat meat right now, but I don’t advocate against it either and may at some point reincorporate it into my diet. I think it is important for you to decide why you are making changes. If you love meat and simply want to slim down then opt for lean or extra lean cuts. If it is about humane animal treatment than you can find a company with practices you can support or completely forgo meat products.