Making healthy eating choices isn’t always easy, but it is necessary. Recently I was given a list of 30+ foods that I was allergic to. I was in shock and disbelief as I looked at that list – it was stuff like almonds, parsley, carrots – foods that were found throughout my fridge. I’ve been allergic to soy for years, which eliminates 95% of all processed foods, so my fridge doesn’t have a lot of crap food in it to begin with. It takes me a good hour to go grocery shopping as I have to read each and every label. I pretty much live in the organic section and don’t venture into the other aisles much. I didn’t start out that way though. For the love of my health, it’s time to clean out the fridge again. Here’s what I did and if you are starting a healthy living lifestyle, you should do it too!
The Refrigerator Makeover
Step 1: Remove everything from your refrigerator and freezer.
Step 2: Clean the shelves and drawers of your refrigerator thoroughly. If you can, use an organic cleaner or something basic like white vinegar and lemon. Line the drawers with paper towels to help balance the moisture levels that will keep your fruits and vegetables lasting a little bit longer.
Step 3: Go through each item that is in your fridge. Throw out anything that is expired. Get rid of anything that is not beneficial to your health and your healthy eating goals. If it is unopened, set it aside to donate.
Step 4: Keep the healthiest items at eye level as these are the ones that you notice right away when opening up the fridge. Don’t worry if your fridge is close to empty, you will restock it with healthier food choices.
Step 5: Take any unopened, unexpired food and beverages you are not keeping to donate to your nearest homeless shelter. Yes, you do need to let go of that soda and fake fruit juice.
These refrigerator bins are heavyweight and have handles! Perfect to keep your fridge organized!
What to Keep
Vegetables – Unless you are doing a special eating plan, keep all vegetables, all colors, all varieties. Vegetables are the spice of life!
Foods high in fiber
Foods high in protein
Good sources of complex carbohydrates like avocados, eggs, butter, and leafy vegetables
Good-quality lean meat, including game meat and wild-caught fish
As for drinks, water and teas are ideal. Keep juices that are not from concentrate.
No time to shop? Have an organic vegetable box delivered straight to your door.
Think Twice About Keeping It
Processed foods – Just let it go already, you don’t need it. Most processed foods can be made at home with better, healthier ingredients. I get that it takes time to make everything from scratch. Doesn’t your health deserve you giving it 1-2 days in the kitchen making meals that will last you for weeks? Seriously, make a big batch of whatever and then freeze them into smaller portions = Instant freezer meals!
A long list of ingredients – If there are more than five ingredients listed, ask yourself if this is something that you really need in your life.
Ingredients you haven’t heard of – Google them. Know what you are putting into your body!
Toss out anything with aspartame, high fructose corn syrup, sucrose, malt, or maltodextrin.
Here’s the big one – added sugar. Take a look at salad dressing, condiments, bread, and various drinks. High in sugar? Say bye bye!
Tidbits to Help You at the Grocery Store
If you have a special diet for any reason, whether it is for allergies or you are trying something like Paleo or Keto, print out the list of approved foods. This way, when you are at the grocery store you don’t have to guess if you should buy something, you know. I have printed out my list of what I can’t have, as it helps me to eliminate those right away. Next, park near the entrance that goes right into the produce section. This is your Happy Place. Fill your cart with organic, whole foods. When you are trying to eat non-GMO, pesticide-free, then you need to buy the organic fruits and vegetables. Pro tip – start shopping at Costco as their organic selection is amazeballs and not much more expensive. I live alone and can polish off a big tub of spinach in 10 days.
Then go to the organic and natural section of the meat department. Just remember this – if you are trying to live a grain free diet, then you need to eat grain-free meat. Talk to the guy behind the seafood counter. Ask what fish and seafood is wild caught. Under no circumstances should you eat farm fish or seafood. Like ever!
These are my best tips to clean out the fridge. Have any to add? Let me know in the comments.
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