Clean Eating for a Better Body
Nutritionist Kara Burnstine shows us why eating clean can help you look and feel better before quarantine is over
Well the quarantine continues and you’ve already cleaned your closet, cleaned your dog and perhaps even cleaned your liquor cabinet. So before reentering the world – which, not incidentally, will soon be presenting the summer season — consider cleaning your meals. Clean Eating is not a diet, like keto or intermittent fasting. And it’s not about cleaning the food really well, although that’s not a particularly bad idea right now. It’s about having a focus on foods that grow in nature and consuming those foods in their whole, unprocessed and original states. Clean eating won’t just help prevent disease, by ridding your body of toxins and filling it with nutrients to fight harder, but when your digestion is smoother from not having to wrestle with chemicals and saturated fats, food burns faster and you may just lose a few pounds.
Here are a few ways to get started.
Stick with fresh foods. Those in cans, boxes, and plastics are definitely fast and convenient, but those without labels are best for you. I’m talking about fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, legumes, whole grains. No need to feel like you have to go all veg, but know that these foods lower your risk of chronic disease, fiber helps feed all the good bacteria in your digestive tract, and ultimately aids in the quest for general good health. If you must buy a box of something, stick those that list five ingredients or less. Oh, and if you can’t pronounce an ingredient, it’s not going to be good for you.
Choose natural sugar: Fruits, nuts, dates and coconut milks can be combined to make scrumptious final courses. (I have a recipe on the bottom.) Skip items that boast they’re sugar free, because most are loaded with sugar alcohols that can mess with the tummy and ruin your digestion, which means not only are we gassy and bloated but that whole digestive traffic jam may mean the fat we ate is waiting around to be absorbed rather than burned off. Artificial sweeteners also don’t translate to skinny, because they make our brains crave more sweets.
Combine your carbs with protein: Grains are good, but they’re even better when balanced out with some protein and fat. That’s because it will help you to feel full for longer and also to keep your blood sugar steady. For example, if you have oatmeal for breakfast, add an egg on top or protein power.
Be realistic and have fun. And compliment your clean eating with ways to workout from home!
Kara Burnstine, MS, RD, LD/N, CDE is a Registered Dietitian, Certified Diabetes Educator and founder of Nutrition Your Weigh, Inc. Kara work with people who are struggling with how to lose weight and keep it off successfully. She guides them with tools and strategies to achieve a better version of themselves through small, consistent goals to create new permanent habits and behaviors.
Kara has a Master of Science degree in Dietetics and Nutrition from the Florida International University and a Bachelor of Science degree in Dietetics and Nutrition from University of Florida.
She has provided nutrition education and counseling in South Florida for 20 years. Kara assists her clients with motivation and behavior modification strategies to help them meet their overall health goals. She counsels clients in one-on-one or group settings, and also produces nutrition and wellness workshops for businesses. Kara also runs 21 Day Clean Eating Challenges twice yearly for her clients to reboot and reset their diet.
Kara believes in giving back to her community. She is active in many charities and serves as a member of the Tocqueville Society at United Way and a mentor for Women of Tomorrow. Kara is also active in multiple wellness committees for local schools, PTAs, and the Miami Beach Jewish Community Center. She makes it a priority to cook good-tasting, healthy meals for her family and loves to do adventurous family vacations. During her free time, Kara loves to run, spin, hike and barre.