Sunday, June 5, 2011

Changing to a Clean Eating Pantry


  If you've recently begun to eat less processed foods, or are thinking about doing so, looking into your pantry filled with less than healthy items might seem daunting. You might have lots of processed foods in there!

The journey to changing your nutrition can be done in two ways : quick or slow - your choice, depending on how you want to get it accomplished.

1. Quick: Take an honest look at your pantry, and immediately pull out the 10-20 items you know without even thinking about it have to go. Pop*Tarts. White Rice.Hot dogs. Cookies. Items like cans of Chef Boyardee pasta, Vienna sausages, and Froot Loops.

Pull these items out. Anything opened? Old? Pitch them. If the idea of throwing it away bothers you, take the canned foods to work and leave them on the lunch table with a "Free to a Good Home" sign. The stuff will be gone in minutes. Or, you can donate fresh but unopened items to a food kitchen or food drive.

Take an inventory of the items you've removed, and go to the grocery store and replace them with Clean.
White rice, bread, spaghetti out? Buy brown rice, whole grain bread without high fructose corn syrups, whole grain spaghetti.
Sauces gone? Replace them with their clean and organic counterparts.

Feeling braver? Get rid of 10 or more items in your pantry that have suspiciously long ingredient lists, or are processed and not fresh.

This way works best if you live alone, or don't have to feed other non CE folks. 

2. Slow: This is accomplished over a period of time, where as you use up that last jar of "regular" spaghetti sauce and its time for more to go on the shopping list, you buy the Clean version, instead of your normal brand. Or, you start learning how to make spaghetti sauce yourself from base ingredients.

This way works best if rapid change isn't your thing, and/or you have a family you are also feeding who might need some time to adjust to a lack of Pop*Tarts in the morning. 

Whichever path you take to stocking your home with healthier options - don't forget to upgrade your spice cabinet selection of Clean condiments , More clean condiments, sea salt instead of regular table salt,  and sugar alternatives.

Don't forget your Clean Eating grocery list to help point the way towards appropriate foods. 

How did you accomplish your CE pantry? Fast or Slow - or is it still a work in progress?