The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Lifestyles

January 1, 2014

Amanda Stone: Clean eating is a realistic resolution

CARTHAGE, Mo. — The time to make resolutions has rolled around again. Set yourself and your family up for success by making realistic goals.

Resolutions centered on eating and exercise seem to be on everyone's annual list. This clearly means that we are not winning the resolution game. As much as I want you to reach for the stars, I'd rather you succeed with attainable goals. Start small, then build on your success. Don't fret. I have some solid ideas for you to try.

Vow to eat clean. If you're new to eating real food, then start with the basics. Switch to whole grains, eat at least five servings of fruits and vegetables per day and cut down on your meat and dairy intake.

Remember that eating whole foods makes the most sense. When you splurge, that's all it was. You are not ruined. Now keep on with your clean eating lifestyle. This is also a great time to work on your positive attitude.

When your cravings have stabilized, stretch your goals a little further. Drink only water, tea and coffee. Wean yourself off of sugar and sweeteners. Make rules for yourself regarding treats. For example, yummy snacks are OK sometimes as long as you make them yourself, from scratch. Go ahead and eat white bread and brownies, but you have to bake them yourself, no mixes allowed. Make yourself work for it.

Drink more water. A gallon per day is a fine goal. Although you're not sweating profusely this time of year, you still need plenty of water. Water helps combat the drying effects of winter, it keeps you feeling full and helps battle winter comfort food bingeing. Herbal tea counts, so use the weather as an excuse to get into tea.

Maybe you've got clean eating in the bag. If so, focus your energy on doing it locally. It's better for everyone involved. Grow some of your own food. There are no excuses; anyone can grow veggies and herbs in pots. Strive to eat meals at home, but if you must eat out, do so locally. My current favorites are The Bruncheonette, Flavors International Cuisine and Mohaska Farmhouse.

At the very least, try three new recipes per month. They won't all be winners, but horizons will be broadened. Try these sure-fire, clean-eating recipes this month to get your goals going.

 

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