Friday, April 8, 2011

Simple Swaps for Clean Eating

Back in the day, if you wanted to eat clean it meant spending a lot of time in the kitchen preparing your own food from scratch and at times, even deciding to sacrifice eating some foods because there just wasn't a healthy alternative.  Sure, supermarket shelves have long been stocked with food that seemed healthy, but now we know that when cookies have suddenly become "sugar-free," that it's because a whole bunch of other stuff has been added to make sure they still taste good.  In this case, "stuff" is code for "not food."  Not food means not healthy.

But now, eating clean is much more maintstream and as a result, more products are available on the market to make it easier for families to do it without having to become farmers. Here are some of my simple swaps for food that you and your kids probably like to eat and can still enjoy in a clean eating household.

My kid likes: Fruit chews. But they are just a bunch of processed sugar!
Instead, I buy him Annie's Organic Bunny Fruit Snacks  Still a bunch of sugar, but it's real sugar. I'll take real sugar over manufacutured any day.

My kid likes: Cereal bars. But the list of ingredients reads like a most-wanted list of chemicals and additives.
Instead, I buy him Barbara's Bakery Fruit and Yogurt Bars.  They're great for school lunches.

My kid likes: Macaroni and Cheese. And seriously, who doesn't?  But I want to make him macaroni and cheese, not macaroni product.
So I buy him Annie's Macaroni and Cheese and he loves it.  I used to puree a bag of mixed vegetables and mix it in but he doesn't fall for that anymore.  Hey, I tried!

And the final simple swap is something I like to eat: sweet potato fries!  I really love sweet potatoes and I love ketchup, so sweet potato fries are a definite crave.  I have never been successful at making them myself, so I was thrilled when I found Ian's Natural Sweet Potato Fries in my freezer section.  They're easy, fast, and taste great. 

Naturally, the best way to eat clean is to stick with the most pure food you can: fruits, veggies, lean meats, and homemade bread.  But if you don't live alone and have a lot of time on your hands, it's great to know there are products out there that can bring clean eating to your kitchen without your family wanting to stage an intervention on you.  If these products are not in your grocery store, especially if you live in a Sabotage City, ask for them!

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