Spring is in the air and wedding planning season is in full swing. Take advantage of new energy and inspiration this month by spring cleaning your pantry of junk food, artificial ingredients, and any foods that are keeping you from reaching your wedding body goals.
1. Read the ingredient labels.
Don’t be fooled by clever marketing phrases like “all natural” or “100% healthy.” These phrases aren’t regulated and they don’t mean that a product is good for you — arsenic is “all natural” after all! Read the ingredient list on all of the packaged, canned and bottled items in your pantry and fridge, and then make a pile of any foods containing the following offenders:
– Artificial food coloring ingredients such as red dye 40, yellow 5, and green 3.
– Artificial sweeteners like aspartame, Splenda, and xylitol.
– Trans fats, often called hydrogenated oils, partially hydrogenated oils, or any ingredient you can’t pronounce.
2. Throw out the junk.
Toss or donate any foods that you added to the junk food pile. Keeping them around for “just in case” moments is a recipe for a healthy-eating-disaster. And if they aren’t in the house, then you can’t eat them.
3. Restock the pantry.
This is the fun part: when you get to restock the pantry! Replace the fake foods that you eliminated with real, whole foods.
Here are some easy swaps to get you started:
– Replace trail mix and granola bars with fresh fruit, raw nuts, and dark chocolate.
– Swap fat free, sugary yogurts with organic whole-milk yogurt and stir through your own toppings.
– Make an easy no-bake granola by combining rolled oats, raw nuts and seeds, dried coconut and goji berries.
– Buy pasta sauces that don’t have added sugar and preservatives.
– Replace store-bought salad dressings with a bottle each of good quality olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
– Choose non-GMO, baked corn, potato, or vegetable chips instead of artificially flavored snacks like Doritos and Cheetos.
– Sip on plain seltzer with fresh lime and leave the sodas at the supermarket.
4. Be vigilant about what you buy.
Junk food is everywhere. From salty snacks and fried foods to sodas, candy bars, and cookies, it can feel hard to choose healthy options. Even the organic supermarkets like Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, and Sprouts sell foods that contain artificial flavorings, preservatives, and sugars. So, don’t be fooled by pretty packaging or an expensive price tag. This season, be vigilant about what you bring into your kitchen by reading labels and making more meals at home. If you need a little motivation, just visualize how amazing you will look and feel on the big day after fueling your body with healthy foods.
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