Eating clean means different things to different people. For some clean eating may mean a vegetarian or vegan diet, switching to gluten free, removing processed foods, or choosing organics. For some, eating clean can be as simple as removing junk food like chips and candies from our diets.
Eating clean is subjective, and is based on what our current diet is. For me, clean eating is all in the pronunciation. Being able to pronounce all of the ingredients in what I eat, and knowing what each ingredient is. When I think of clean, I always think of water, water washes away the dirt and grime on our cars, our floors, our clothes so it stands to reason water will wash the toxins out of our body as well.
Any change that you can make towards cleaning up your dietary intake is a positive one. Remember that it doesn’t have to be a huge change, and that small steps forward are more successful changes than making a drastic change all at once.
As summer season sneaks upon us there are endless nutritious options to choose from. This is the best time of year for all colors of the rainbow of fresh fruit and vegetables!
Tips and Tricks
Visit the Farmers Market: They have a ton of in season fresh summer fruit (peaches, nectarines, plums, cherries) and home grown vegetables (spinach, lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers). You will find a little trip to the farmers market may inspire you to try something new and because most of the selection is fresh and local you can avoid a large amount of additives and sodium!
Barbeque Fresh Fruit for Dessert: Pineapples, peaches and apricots are among the many fruits that are delicious items to grill; all you need to do is sprinkle a little bit of olive oil and place on the grill for a few minutes. The taste is rich and fulfilling while being nutritious. If you would like to indulge you can add a scoop of frozen yogurt or ice cream on top.
Hydrate: Summer is one of the most important times of year to make sure you have water before, during and after exercise as well as throughout your day. The body thrives on two liters of water per day to function at its optimal capability. If you wait until becoming thirsty you’ve waited too long. Thirst is an indicator that the body is dehydrated so make sure to be drinking water throughout your entire day. If you struggle with remembering, try labeling your water bottle to indicate target levels for consumption throughout the day or set your phone alarm to remind you every hour.
Engage in Food Prep: With longer sunny days most people want to spend the maximal amount of time outdoors and don’t want to think about cooking. Spend one afternoon each week in your kitchen prepping items, marinating and planning your weekly menu to make food prep more efficient. In the end, you’ll be able to grab and go without compromising nutrition.
Most off all enjoy your savory moments!
Strength and Conditioning Director
YMCA Calgary, Shawnessy
Store shelves are packed with different options for how to rehydrate after a good workout. But what’s the best way? In this article on the WebMD.com website, Elaine Magee takes a look at the options out there and helps determine which is best for you:
“We all know that when we work out, it’s important to stay hydrated. Something we may not be so clear on is what exactly we should drink when we exercise.
Ordinary water, of course, is the classic choice. But with store shelves everywhere full of sports drinks, energy drinks, and various flavored and fortified waters, what’s an exerciser to do?”
Read the full article on the WebMD.com website.
Many people forget the importance of proper fluid intake, especially in the winter.
When you start to get thirsty you are only about 1% dehydrated, therefore just drinking when you are thirsty can work to replace lost fluid in sedentary people that are in controlled climates and have easy access to water, but is not necessarily ideal. For an athletic population even being dehydrated by 1% can hinder your performance. That is why it is so important to maintain optimal hydration levels when participating in physical activity.
In preparation, you should drink at least 500ml of fluid 2-3 hours before activity and another 250ml 10-15 minutes before your activity. This fluid is needed to achieve optimum hydration prior to exercise.
During the activity, you need to maintain adequate hydration levels. To do this you should have a regular intake of fluid during the activity of around 250ml every 15 minutes. Do not wait until you are thirsty because by that time you are already dehydrated and your performance will suffer. For activities that are less than an hour in duration stick to plan old water as your choice of fluid replacement. For activities that are longer than one hour you can choose a sport drink that is going to replace fluid, carbohydrates and electrolytes.
During exercise you do not burn enough fat for any type of noticeable difference on the scale. If you do weight yourself before and after a workout session and you have decreased in weight, you have lost a lot of fluid and you need to re-hydrate. The best way to optimally re-hydrate after your activity is to weigh yourself before and after your activity and for each kilogram lost consume 1 litre of water. Many people mistake the weight lost during exercise as fat loss when it is actually fluid loss. Do not ignore this lost fluid.
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