What we mean by Clean Eating
At EATbyalex, when we talk about clean eating, we want to promote the consumption of foods that come as close to their natural form and using as little processing as possible. For us eating clean means eating 100% natural, organic, plant-based and whole food meals that are freshly cooked every day. That also implies the use of seasonal and local produce. That’s what the nature has planned for us and offers us in abundance.
Diversity over quantity
We believe that eating as many different ingredients as possible is essential for better nutrient and protein absorption. Getting your nutrients from just a few ingredients is simply not enough. The official recommendation is to consume a minimum of 5 veggies and fruits a day. We suggest to aim for 10 a day. At EATbyalex, we use more than 40 different fruits & vegetables during our 5 days complete clean eating experiences.
We also use more than 10 different nuts and seeds including almonds, hazelnuts, walnuts, cashews, peanuts, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds and sesame seeds. We don’t use refined white rice but instead have black rice, red rice, brown rice, brown basmati and jasmine rice.
There is so much choice that is rarely used in a classic diet. Other complex carbs include black, red and white quinoa, millet, amaranth and buckwheat. All of these are gluten-free. If you don’t follow a gluten-free diet, you could also consider spelt, barley and whole wheat.
What about the proteins ?
Complete proteins we use include pulses and legumes like classic and black chickpeas, yellow, red, green and black lentils but also every bean out there. Nuts and seeds also contain between 15 and 22 grams of protein per 100 grams.
In addition, we don’t use refined sugars nor ingredients that contain gluten. Overall a whole food, plant-based diet allows you to meet your nutritional needs by only eating natural, preferably organic, and minimally processed foods.
Does Clean Eating mean that I will lose weight?
There is a lot of confusion behind the word ‘diet’. The purpose of a plant-based diet is not to lose weight but to eat healthier and more sustainably with a higher intake of fibres, vitamins and minerals rather than ‘empty’ calories from highly sweetened foods.
Milk and dark chocolate is a good example to describe empty calories. Milk chocolate contains sugar, cacao butter and milk solids but very little cacao powder. On the other hand, dark chocolate derives from the ground cacao bean; it contains cacao or cacao bean powder, cacao butter and only a little amount of sugar. It is true that the two bars of chocolate contain the same amount of calories, however dark chocolate is healthier because rich in cacao content and therefore, of antioxidants. On the opposite side, milk chocolate does not offer the same health benefits because it is mainly refined sugar (more than 50% is sugar).
Part of our clean eating experience is to stop counting calories and concentrate on eating whole and plant-based produce, getting proteins from plants and eating whole food carbs also called complex carbs.
Do you want to find out more? Great, read more in our next issue.