You may be feeling a tad sluggish today, regretting all of this weekend’s decisions. Sometimes when that happens, it feels good to plan ahead for a day of clean eating. When Candice Kumai showed us how to eat clean, she gave us the perfect atypical day from breakfast to dinner of what to consume. The great news is, it’s super detailed, so you can replicate it and mix and match it any day of the week. Why eat clean? It’s a better way to eat in general, and a great way to get out all the toxins from your weekend (and believe us when we say we detox AND retox, so no guilty feelings necessary).
If we haven’t convinced you, here’s what Kumai had to say on the matter: “Clean eating can be summed up into one, powerful, glowing and healthy lifestyle: A lifestyle that involves consuming real food in or as close to its most natural state as possible. Eating to nourish and cleanse the body and mind. Educating yourself on where food comes from. Purchasing or growing foods that are nutritious, unprocessed, and sustainable. Being more mindful of your overall health and the environment in which you live. Clean eating is a choice and a way of life.”
Here’s what one day this week should look like for you…
Start each day with a simple-to- make, delicious, filling, and low-sugar green smoothie, like my Anti-Inflammatory Smoothie. To keep smoothies from getting too sugary, always use unsweetened nut, rice, or coconut milks and you can even swap avocado for frozen bananas. This heart-healthy fruit is full of natural fiber and contains high levels of vitamin E and vitamin K. Avocados are also a beauty food—they have been linked to promoting a healthy body weight and BMI, and those healthy fats will do wonders for your skin, hair, and nails. Here are a few more ways to make delicious, clean and green smoothies, the right way!
Cashews are my favorite nut to snack on. Cashew nuts are actually seeds that grow on the bottom of the cashew apple, the fruit from the cashew tree. They contain healthy plant protein and magnesium, which help to control inflammation, give you energy, and promote bone health. I love packing up cashews to go in a mason jar before a long plane ride. Check out my Clean Green Herbed Cashews for a delicious treat. Add superfood booster spirulina, a brilliant plant-based super green derived from blue-green algae for an extra-boost of nutrients. Considered nature’s “multivitamin,” spirulina is packed with protein, vitamin A, K, B12, iron, magnesium, and even probiotics.
Plan a cleansing lunch – see my delicious Roasted Kabocha Squash Salad [featured above] – packed with powerful green detoxifying ingredients like seaweed, leeks, kale, and avocado. Kale is not a trend, it is here to stay. Packed with everything from vitamin A, C, and K to mega-antioxidants and even protein, one cup of this superfood contains approximately 206 percent of your daily recommended vitamin A, approximately 134 percent of your daily recommended vitamin C intake, and approximately 684 percent of your recommended vitamin K intake. Wow!
Try finishing your salads with hemp seeds (which is a complete protein!), meaning it offers all of the essential amino acids your body needs to fuel metabolic function and build muscle. There are five grams of lean, muscle-building protein in just two tablespoons of hemp seeds. Hemp seeds and marijuana come from the same species of plant, but there’s no THC in hemp seeds, thus—sorry, friends—no high! But…your body will be high on their benefits.
Your dinner will harness the power of plant protein (yes, protein from plants!) for hearty bowls and salads that are meat-free and allow your digestive system to take a rest from the energy-consuming job of processing animal protein. I love to use fiber-rich barley as a base for hearty bowls—it has such a great texture and is really filling. With a nutty, earthy flavor, a “pasta- like” consistency, and a powerhouse nutritional profile, barley is a clear swap from your plain old boring rice dish. Barley contains manganese, selenium, fiber, copper, B vitamins, phosphorus, magnesium, and more. Barley can also help aid in digestion due to its fiber content. Add tofu, edamame, and—my favorite—avocado, and you have a totally satisfying meat-free meal.