In the light of an article that I have just read about processed meat and their potential link to colon cancer, I thought I would jot down some essential information that everyone should know and perhaps doesn't. All of you know that my eating philosophy is based on the concept of ‘Clean Eating’. For those of you who are unsure about this clean eating concept – it is a way of eating that tries to eliminate all processed foods and make whole foods the basis of your diet. I always say to my patients that processed foods are foods that man has changed, enhanced or created. So if a certain food does not exist in nature ie. grow on the earth or on an animal (giggle), then it is probably processed.
My clients always laugh in consultations when I say that bread doesn’t grow on trees, but oats, rice and potatoes do - therefore bread is processed and the others are ‘clean’. The same applies to animal proteins. Sausages do not walk around in fields, but we can point out the rib eye, fillet, or rump cut on the cow's body. Same applies to chicken nuggets or burger patties, compared to chicken breast or chicken thighs. Nuggets and burger patties are not pieces of the actual chicken – therefore they are not clean and ultimately are processed.
There are a few foods that fall into a grey area. Mince is processed but good quality mince is actually just beef minced up – so it could be seen as clean (by clean eaters like me). Soya sauce is also processed in theory, but the good quality soya sauce like Kikkoman are not laced with fillers, stabilisers and flavor enhancers – so I therefore ‘allow’ them as part of my clean diet.
Whether you want to be 100% clean or just aim at cleaning-up your diet, begin with the easy foods to change. Start with eating less processed meat, less flavoured dairy products, less refined sugars (juices, bread, pasta and cereals) . This small change will make a huge difference to the ‘rubbish’ that ends up in your colon. And as that article said, the ‘rubbish’ in your colon is what has been linked to the increase in colon cancers.
Here is the list of clean and processed foods that I give my clients. I always say that this is a good place to start… If you need more help, head over to my online guide section and perhaps buy one of our Clean Eating eBooks which will give you actual eating plans and more ideas to make clean eating a way of life.
Above all aim at eating with a purpose; a purpose to nourish your body with nutrient rich food that actually gives your body something – be it fibre, enzymes, vitamins or antioxidants…
Why would we want to put anything else into our bodies?
Bread, Pasta, Fruit Juice, Breakfast Cereals (excl. Oats), Crackers, Wraps, White Rice, Fast Food, Chocolates, Alcohol
Oats, Quinoa, Brown Rice, Fruit, Lentils, Chickpeas, Butternut, Sweet potatoes, Buckwheat, Baby Jacket Potatoes, Mielies, Beetroot
Sausages, Patties, Schnitzels, Nuggets, Fish Fingers, Turkey Ham, Sliced Ham, Salami, Chorizo, Yellow Cheeses
Fresh Meat cuts, Chicken On Bone – no skin, Chicken Breast & Thighs – no skin, Fish Fillets – no batter, Legumes, White Cheeses
Mayonnaise, Margarine, Vegetable Blend Oils
Avocado, Nuts, Seeds, Olives, Cold-pressed Olive & Coconut Oils, Butter