It's time to 'spark joy' in your pantry!
If you haven’t heard about ‘Tidying up with Marie Kondo’ then chances are you have not been binging on Netflix, which we’re ok with. In fact, we applaud you. But if you fit into the other 99.8% of the population, you are more than likely taking a break from decluttering and playing origami with your clothes to read this.
With a clean and organised home at the top of everyone’s to do list, the sentiment should extend into one’s fridge and pantry. In fact, it’s the perfect opportunity to implement a ‘clean eating’ approach to your diet. Your body is the most important temple after all!
Now, before you get too excited, we’re about to take Marie Kondo’s approach to cleaning and flip it on its head. I mean, if we really only let you keep items which 'sparked joy', we're afraid your diets may only consist of Nutella and Happy Way. When it comes to cleaning up your approach to food, it’s as much about adding as it is deducting.
But don’t worry – no origami folding required.
Add more colour with fruits and vegetables
We’re not here to help you declutter and keep a half empty fridge, no. We’re here to tell you to fill it to the brim with plenty of colour. With more than 87% of the population not consuming enough fruits and vegetables, one of the first steps towards clean eating is adding plenty of whole foods and natural sources of vitamins and minerals back into your diet.
But do deduct unnatural dyes and additives from your repertoire
Spend some time reading the ingredients list at the back of food items stored in your fridge and pantry. If they read like a short novel, chances are they are highly processed and full of artificial colours, flavours and preservatives. Processed foods usually contain names you can’t pronounce let alone understand. Rid your pantry of foods laden with artificial fillers and go back to basics. Home-made sauces and condiments are best and when time is of the essence, opt for items made from natural ingredients.
Take a break from white bread
While we know the kind of joy a piece of fresh white bread smothered in Nutella can spark, give your carbohydrates a makeover. White breads, white pasta, muffins and cakes are made from highly processed and usually bleached flour, offering no real nutrients. Instead, opt for wholegrain and natural sources of carbohydrates such as brown rice and wholemeal bread. They won't lead your sugar levels to spike leaving you hungry and raiding the pantry between meals. The added bonus, they are easier to digest and will help you keep those washboard abs you have been working on.
Eat less meat
Now, we’re not about to tell you to quit meat all together. We’re merely about to suggest a trial separation. Give your body a break by sticking to a plant based diet during the week so you can indulge in your favourite medium rare steak during the weekend. Studies suggest that lowering your intake of red meat not only helps promote good gut health but may also help lower your blood pressure and the risk of heart disease. If you really can’t go meat free, try and opt for healthier options such as grain-fed meat and wild-caught salmon.
Rekindle your love affair with cooking
Now that your kitchen has been decluttered and organised from your pots and pans all the way down to your pantry and fridge, it’s time to get reacquainted with cooking. This is one of the easiest ways to ensure you are eating clean by managing what ingredients you are putting into your meals . It also ensures you are cutting back on your salt and sugar intake which is often one of the key ingredients of pre-packaged and take away food.