Sunday, January 15, 2012

Clean Eating

Clean Eating- a phrase I have not heard before until my personal training session with Eric Friday night.

He said a way for me to reduce my stomach is to eat as cleanly as possible (along with working out).

So I hit the web yesterday to find out exactly what Clean Eating was.

My first impression was that it was basically not eating anything processed, but after further "research", I found out it is a little more than that.

Depending on what "diet" you follow, depends on exactly what you allow into yourself to eat. For example, one website doesn't recommend anything whole wheat- like pasta or bread. That same website also says no orange juice or soy or margarine (only real butter- see below for the link to their site).

Tosca Reno's website allows whole grain bread, fat free soy milk, and olive oil based margarine. Because I feel that her "diet" will be a little easier to incorporate, hers is what I will be mostly referencing here.

Also for those interested in eating clean, I will be adding links to interesting websites that have clean eating recipes and info. I will also include a grocery list for eating clean.

So what is Eating Clean exactly?

According to Tosca Reno and her "Eat Clean Diet", it is treating your body right.

"Eating the way nature intended. You eat the foods our bodies evolved to function best on, and that makes you feel – and look – fantastic. When you Eat Clean you eat more often. You will eat lean protein, complex carbs, and healthy fats. These practices keep your blood-sugar levels stable and keep you satisfied. The best part is that if you need to lose weight it will happen almost without you having to try. And yes, you can have a treat now and again.

Best of all, Eating Clean keeps you feeling great and full of energy. In fact, you can forget all about the days when “dieting” meant feelings of hunger, lethargy or deprivation.

Eating Clean is not a fad; it’s a way of life. When you Eat Clean your body will react by losing weight if you need to lose, maintaining a healthy weight if that’s where you are, and even gaining weight if you are too skinny. But regardless of whether you want to lose, maintain or gain, you will feel better than you ever have before." (

I found a grocery list from her website- here is the link: Grocery List

It is pretty basic. Eat fruits and veggies, whole grain breads, chicken breast, pork and beef tenderloin, salmon, bison (yes bison), lean ground turkey, firm and silken tofu, eggs, skim milk, brown rice, wheat germ, well you get the picture. Check out the grocery list for yourself.

The other website that I mentioned above (the one that said no orange juice) talks about different foods that cause an insulin spike in your diet. They claim that food like orange juice and white rice and other foods cause a quick spike in insulin. When your insulin spikes, it sends your body into fat storing mode. Very interesting stuff. They even have a little video you can watch that goes through their views. I recommend watching it just for further understanding of Eating Clean.

Eating clean provides a steady level of insulin and as a result, causes your body to burn fat efficiently. And one of the biggest places affected by insulin and body fat is (Ding!) your stomach area!

So, while I can't see myself completely going to an Eat-Clean Diet all the time, if I can cut out the majority of processed foods, this should be pretty easy to do MOST of the time. This isn't a starvation diet. You eat 5-6 times a day.

It also isn't a 5 food diet (meaning you can only eat 5 things)- the grocery list is quite extensive as I mentioned before. It is all about reading labels when you grocery shop and cut out as much sugar and fake food as possible. Basically if you can't pronounce the ingredient, you shouldn't eat it.

I was surprised when I looked as some low cal, low sodium soup I just bought and the ingredient label says it has sug in it! Really? Sugar in soup??? Now I know what to start looking for when I go shopping. Canned food that contains only a couple ingredients, low sodium, no sugar...and incorporate a lot more grains into the diet.

The recipes I found look pretty yummy. The picture above is from Tosca Reno's website. It is for Crispy Chicken bites and I will be making these for the family this week. See my tip for the recipe.

Here is a list of some other websites I found interesting:

Joy of Clean Eating

Tosca Reno's Blog

Clean Eating Pantry

6 tips for getting started

Tip of the Day is the recipe for them:

YIELD: 6 servings (20 to 25 nuggets)
COOKING TIME: 10-15 minutes


Fast-food nuggets have nothing on these delicious morsels. The crispy almond-based coating and yummy honey-mustard sauce will make this quick dish a family favorite in no time. For more kid-friendly, Tosca-approved meal ideas, pick up your copy of The Eat-Clean Diet® for Family and Kids.


• 3 x 6-oz / 170-g boneless, skinless chicken breasts
• ¼ cup / 60 ml oat bran
• ¼ cup / 60 ml wheat germ
• 1 Tbsp / 15 ml coarsely ground flaxseed
• ¼ cup / 60 ml coarsely ground almonds
• ½ tsp / 2.5 ml sea salt
• ½ tsp / 2.5 ml white pepper
• Pinch garlic powder
• ½ cup / 120 ml water or low-sodium chicken broth
• 1 large egg white, lightly beaten


  1. Preheat oven to 400°F / 232°C. Prepare baking sheet by lining with parchment paper or coating lightly with extra virgin olive oil.
  2. Cut chicken breasts into nugget-sized pieces, about 1½ inches square. Set aside.
  3. Next, combine all dry ingredients in a large container with a tightly fitting lid. Shake well. This is your coating mixture.
  4. Combine water and egg in a medium bowl. Dip each piece in the water-egg white mixture. Then dip each piece in the coating mixture. Make sure each piece is well coated.
  5. Place on the baking sheet. When all of your chicken has been coated and your baking sheet is full, place in the oven and bake for 10-15 minutes or until golden.
Clean-Eating Honey Mustard Sauce


• 1½ tsp / 7.5 ml honey
• 1 Tbsp / 15 ml Dijon mustard


  1. Mix well.

Tosca's Tip

Use the almond coating on larger strips of chicken breast to make chicken tenders for the adults!

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