|« Here we come November: The Clean-Eating Challenge!||An awesome November Cleanse tool: theDailyPlate.com »|
Meet your new clean-eating lifestyle! Days 1-3 of this cleanse will be the most restrictive, the purpose being to help your body cleanse itself of any and all junk that has been previously absorbed into your body by anything you’ve consumed (i.e. water-retaining and metabolism-slowing sodium, alcohol that instructs your body to hold on to fat, hormones from animal by-products, and countless other crap from processed foods). We want to set you up for success, and that means you’ll be starting the month of November as a cleaned and tuned, well-functioning human body-machine.
Another very important reason to cut so much stuff out of your diet is so that later, when you start adding some stuff back in, you can appreciate it more and not go overboard on portions. For example, for me, it only takes a few days without table salt to realize how much I tend to over-do it, and how little I really need to get the job done.
Alright, let’s get started!
Most meals (60-ish %) should consist of:
- a large portion (think half of a cereal bowl) of fruits and vegetables. Raw is awesome, but lightly steamed, blanched, or sauteed veggies work too.
- a small portion of animal protein, preferably chicken breast or fish (cook with little to no oil; baking, boiling, or Foreman Grilling is best). Avoid red meat for days 1-3.
- a portion of plant protein or legumes such as beans, lentils, chick peas, etc. Legumes are your best friend this month! They are filling, full of awesome fiber and protein, the canned variety provide a little “sauciness”, and for the first 3 days will provide you with plenty of energy-sustaining carbohydrates while you eliminate processed starches.
For most meals with all the above components, I like simply putting all the stuff in a bowl and mixing it up. You may prefer to lay each department out on a plate, just find what works best for you!
If eating veggies raw and the meat is boiled and your salad is just way too dry to eat plain, squirt fresh lemon and dash a half a tablespoon of olive oil, mix with sea salt and fresh pepper, and you’re set!
- vegan soups such as split pea, broccoli & potato, butternut squash, lentil, etc. Get a good brand with very few ingredients, or make them yourself! Soups are SUPER easy to make, you can make big batches that last for a week, and they’re re a seriously convenient, savory meal.
- hard-boiled eggs, with strawberries and baby carrots
- an apple, a handful of grapes, and a portion of almonds
- scrambled eggs, with sugar snap peas and slices of red bell peppers
- pomegranate arils with a few walnuts
Guidelines and Omissions
- NO dairy in your diet for days 1-3. If you must eat dairy, try some plain yogurt or something with few ingredients.
- NO protein powders.
- NO alcohol.
- NO skipping breakfast. Ever. I’m serious. Eat within 30 minutes of waking even if it’s a small meal.
- NO added fats from dressings or condiments. Exception: olive oil. And measure, measure, measure.
- NO added fats in meals other than salmon, nuts (small portion! measure, measure, measure), avocado, etc. (so NO cheese, etc.)
- NO processed carbohydrates such as cereal, breads or pastas.
- all nuts should be raw, i.e. NOT roasted or salted.
- drink tons of water and drink green tea instead of coffee (it has just as much caffeine, won’t dehydrate you, and has tons of secondary health benefits)
- no deprivation–eat when you feel hungry, stop when you’re satiated. Load up on fruits and veggies at meals. No one got fat from eating produce!
- Eat an extra portion of carbohydrates before working out (think fruits and legumes).
Tips For Being Strong During Days 1-3
- You want to set yourself up for success, right? Then prep, prep, prep! Chop up 2 or 3 mixing bowls full of different fruit and/or veggie mixes to keep in your fridge that you can throw into any meal at any time. The mixes should keep for 3 or 4 days.
- Think outside the box. A cereal bowl full of one of your veggie mixes topped with scrambled eggs, avocado, and sauteed mushrooms and tomatoes makes an awesome Salad-For-Breakfast and shoots you up with TONS of awesome vitamins and nutrients to give you wicked energy to start your day!
- Fresh lemon is your new BFF. Squirt it on vegetables if you get bored, squirt it in a smoothie for zest. Throw it all over the place.
- For salt-addicts like me, Bragg’s Liquid Aminos is your other new BFF. It’s a healthy way to season your meals, and also adds a “saucy” dimension to a dry dish.
- If you’re cooking your meats or veggies lightly, don’t be shy with: garlic, green onions or chives, and fresh herbs like cilantro, parsley, sage and rosemary.
- A couple of my favorite mixing bowl mixes of veggies are 1) raw chopped red cabbage, broccoli (chopped fine), and chopped red bell peppers (this mixture courtesy of the Juicy Cafe!), and 2) sliced cherry tomatoes, diced heirloom tomatoes, sliced black olives, cubed raw eggplant, chopped kale, diced garlic and red onion.
Ideas for Your Adventure at the Grocery Store!
- fresh spinach, kale
- fresh broccoli
- red bell peppers
- English cucumbers
- Brussels sprouts
- butternut squash
- red cabbage
- fresh green beans
- all types of tomatoes
- any berry you can get your hands on!
- pomegranates. Omg. I’m freaking obsessed with ‘em.
- banana (filling if you’re craving carbs!)
- you’ve got to get yourself a measuring tablespoon and some measuring cups if you don’t already have them. Fruits and veggies aren’t as important, but always measure your oils and nuts.
Okay guys. I think you’re pretty well armed for the first couple days. Please DON’T hesitate to email or call me if you have any questions about anything at all. I am totally here for you guys. Plus, I’ve gone from a crappy diet and being 20 pounds overweight to eating clean pretty quickly, so I can completely sympathize with the challenges. But trust me, it can be done. I believe in you guys. Believe in yourselves too.
And you guys need to be there for each other, too! Comment on the blog or post on MadAbs’ Facebook page so you can stay in touch! We’re in this together baby. YEAH!
See you on Thursday!!!