The Hype of Clean Eating

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Today's post is written by a dear, old friend, horticulturist, and integrative nutrition health coach Angela Sydnes. Her work is the coolest to me, because she combines her extensive knowledge in plants, herbal medicine with progressive nutrition eduction. She's smart! And keeps it simple stupid. We did call her "Chillangie" growing up after all.

We've been friends since we were 10. A few years ago, she helped me get my hormones back on track as well as taught me a TON about doing my best to manage my energy with an anti-inflammation diet (aka eating clean) after 8 years of losing sleep from Midwifery. 

Without further ado...

Do you have a favorite food that you HAVE to have or can’t stop eating? Do you feel tired, bloated, and drained ALL the time? These may be signs of a food addiction or food intolerance. 

And if you’re thinking, “Okay, so what’s the big deal,” then you should know that it takes only ONE food to wreak havoc on your health and your ability to maintain a healthy weight, immunity, and more.

Many times the foods we LOVE the most are the foods that our bodies have sensitivity to, keeping us from losing weight and making us feel tired and depressed.

When we eat a food that we have sensitivity to, it causes an inflammatory reaction and floods our body with chemicals. Our immune system can attack the food much like it would attack a germ, taxing your whole body and draining your energy.

Millions of adults and children suffer from allergic reactions to food and do not know it because the symptoms can be hard to diagnose. The symptoms are:

Acne/skin breakouts
Slow metabolism
Weight gain
Digestive issues
Cravings for food
Binge eating

When people don’t know that food intolerance is the root cause of their health issue, they think, “There must be something wrong with me.” The most common foods that people have sensitivity are dairy, wheat/gluten, peanuts, eggs, corn and soy. These are the foods that are trigger foods for people, along with sugar, processed foods, artificial ingredients, and trans fats.

Once you have eliminated these reactive foods from your life, you will be amazed at how quickly your energy and health will increase and, if needed, weight will effortlessly fall off.

There are many reasons that a person may choose to eat clean. As you go through this process of eliminating foods that cause inflammation, you will find that even if you started off with just one reason, the benefits you experience are often broader and further reaching.

Some of the benefits of clean eating are:

Mental clarity
Increased energy
Improved digestion
Allergy relief
Weight loss
Hormonal balance
Radiant skin
Improved physical appearance
Longevity and disease prevention
Relief from minor health conditions
Clarity in life path and goals
Tissue regeneration
Increased general well-being
Personal confidence and empowerment

Clean eating may seem fairly restrictive compared to the modern day American diet, but you should not go hungry.

Your best bet is to shop the perimeter of your store and prioritize whole, organic, and local foods whenever your budget allows. Choosing Whole grains, beans and a rainbow of fruits and vegetables as well as clean animal protein (organic, local, pasture raised, free range).

Your life will be a bit different when you change to eating clean simply because you will be eating, doing and thinking different things.

One incredible benefit to clean eating will be the awareness gained about how different foods make you feel physically, emotionally, and energetically. Your taste buds will begin to change and you will begin to understand how your body is responding to the foods you are consuming.  This will give you more control of reactions you were not aware were caused by foods.

There are thousands of different dietary recommendations and philosophies, and new ones come up every day. The best way to figure out your personalized diet is to begin to pay attention to how you feel as you explore different ways of eating and being. In the process of you will begin to recognize which foods may not be serving you, despite what you have read or been told.

Angela Sydnes CHHC, AADP is a holistic health coach who received a Bachelor of Science in Horticulture from Montana State University-Bozeman. While there she apprenticed in herbal medicine at the Sweet Grass School of Herbalism. Since, she has worked coast to coast in the field of Horticulture before opening her own holistic health coaching practice. A mother of two, wife, avid gardener and wild plant enthusiast she is our go-to-woman for health information.