When you first learn about eating clean, it can be hard to figure out exactly what you should be eating, how much you should eat and when to eat. Don’t get caught up in the details – you will never start living the lifestyle if you do! We get countless emails from people wondering exactly what their macros should be and even if they are doing it the “right” way. The truth is, eating clean does have some fundamental rules, but all the other “specifics” have to do what works for you.
Below, you will find 8 of our rules for things you should know when you start eating clean. These rules are easy to follow and leave some room for personal interpretation. At the end of the day, for you to make a lifestyle change, it has to make sense to you. Make eating clean work for you!
8 THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW WHEN YOU START EATING CLEAN
- The fundamental idea of eating clean is “If it has a mother or grows in the ground, eat it.”
- If you cannot pronounce an ingredient, don’t buy it or eat it.
- Try to eat 6 small meals per day, but if you can’t, eating 3 clean meals per day is better than stuffing your body full of junk! Get started with our 1,500 Calorie Clean Eating Meal Plan.
- Eating clean lends itself to A LOT of variety – you do NOT have to eat chicken day in and day out! You can also be flexible with clean eating – try to maintain a ratio of 80% clean and 20% “flexible”. If you fall off the tracks a bit, no big deal, just jump right back in and get back on track! You can enjoy some of your favorite recipes by easily swapping out junk ingredients for clean, natural ingredients…try one of our Most Popular Recipes!
- The exact ratio of carbohydrates, protein, and fats is specific for you. The amount of calories your body requires is different from the number of calories your friend requires. If you’re just starting out, don’t get too bogged down into the details and focus on evenly balancing carbs, protein, and fat. If you’re more advanced then you can start to adjust the ratios based on your goals/needs. Nutritional needs are never static – they are always changing.
- You can jump into eating clean with both feet, all at once or take baby steps toward your ultimate goal. You know your personality best, so focus on what is right for you as long as you are making positive progress toward changing your eating habits and following the 80/20 rule.
- Eating clean isn’t a diet – it’s a lifestyle. Making lifestyle changes vs. dieting is key to shifting your views toward eating clean.
- Do not deprive yourself. Find alternative methods of making your favorite desserts and snacks that contain fewer preservatives and more closely resemble the eat clean spectrum. Again, if you focus on the 80/20 rule, you will see results! Have you seen our desserts/treats recipes?!
Need more help with getting started eating clean? Join our FREE Healthy Living Challenge, check out our “Lifestyle” resource page and grab our workout plans and eBooks to get the information all in one place.
What do you wish you knew when you started eating clean?