Although we may or may not know it, eating clean can enhance our performance in martial arts. It also helps us opt for the best and healthiest foods in place of less nutritional and calorie laden ones. It involves eating a balanced diet of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, healthy proteins and fats — pretty straightforward right?
Given this fact, switching to clean eating might seem like the easiest thing to do in the world when in reality, it could get quite tricky. For every unanswered question you might have about clean eating, we at Evolve Daily have the answers.
Today, Evolve Daily shares 6 Biggest Myths About Clean Eating and how to easily incorporate it into your lifestyle:
1) You must go vegan.
Just because you’ve decided to start eating clean doesn’t mean that you need to give up meat, poultry and dairy products completely. Instead, you need to choose which meat and dairy products suit your clean eating lifestyle better.
Leaner cuts of meat, organic and free-range – there are many options out there to choose from. Remember, cutting out meat and poultry completely from your diet will leave you protein and creatine deficient. Both nutrients are important for muscle development, which you definitely need for martial arts.
2) You must follow the low-carb and high protein combination.
Yes, we’ve all heard the horror stories about carbs and what it does to your body. However, cutting carbs out of your diet completely might make you susceptible to headaches, fatigue and diarrhea. Combined with a high-protein diet, it’s simply a recipe for disaster.
Not only will you increase your cholesterol levels, it may eventually lead to future kidney problems. Instead of eliminating carbs from your diet, why not simply improve the quality of carbs you eat? Cut out the “white carbs” from your diet – white bread, white rice and sugar, substituting them for brown rice, whole grain bread, quinoa, fruits and vegetables instead.
3) You must say goodbye to calories.
Just because you’re counting calories, it doesn’t mean that you’re eating clean. It only means that you’ve cut down on your calorie intake, which may mean you’re depriving yourself of essential vitamins, minerals and other nutrients. Instead of cutting calories, why not focus on the quality of food that you eat?
4) You must avoid fat at all costs.
The word “fat” can be deceiving. Often times, we think of fat as the enemy when in fact, it is not. There’s the good kind of fats such as monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats that are found in avocados, peanut butter, salmon, and flax seeds, which helps improve your blood cholesterol levels and lower your risk of heart disease. A moderate amount of fat can also be used for cooking vegetables, making it easier for us to eat.
Fat can also help in the absorption of certain vitamins and phytonutrients that actually promote health instead of the opposite.
5) You must avoid sweets.
We know what you’re thinking. Just because you’re eating clean, it means that you should avoid sweets at all costs. In fact, the only sweets you should avoid are those made with refined white sugar.
If your sweet tooth is begging you for sugar, you might find that natural sweeteners such as stevia, honey and 100% pure maple syrup could give you that sugar rush you need!
6) You must spend a lot of money on food.
Clean eating doesn’t have to be expensive. It can be the complete opposite, especially if you prepare your own meals at home. When you meal prep, make sure that you fill your containers with fruits, veggies, and lean proteins.
If that’s still affecting your budget, you can opt for beans, canned tuna and chicken breast as an alternative source for protein. The more you get used to clean eating, the more you’ll realize that it’s really not so expensive after all!
In our quest of becoming the best martial artist that we could possibly be, we must always do what we can to stay on track. If clean eating will help us achieve our martial arts goals, so be it – and getting these myths out of the way undoubtedly helps you eventually get to where you want to be.
So tell us, will you start eating clean today?