Paleo vs. Clean Eating

Paleo-vs-Clean-EatingOne of the biggest topics on the health and personal fitness training front lately is the paleo vs. clean eating debate. Truthfully, they’ve both been around for years, thousands of them actually (LOL), as it was man (I’m speaking in general here, not placing all blame on the male gender) who ruined our food in the first place. Hydrogenated this, processed, refined and processed some more that…ick, ick, ick! It really hasn’t been that long since there weren’t any unhealthy options to begin with. It’s only been in the last 100 years or so that things such as fast food even became an issue. Before that, everything that was consumed was natural because there was no other choice. All recipes were made from scratch, because there were no Walmart, Target or Super Stores let alone the pre-made any and every thing they sell. It’s high time, in my opinion, that we all get back to basics and eat the foods we all know we should be! It’s awesome to see so much emphasis on healthy eating, and even more so that the focus is on whole, all natural, foods.

Honestly, I don’t really think you can go wrong no matter which way you decide to go on this one. They both have pros and cons ( but hey, what doesn’t?). Let’s dig a little deeper and get to the good stuff here, shall we? What exactly is the paleo diet?? What does it mean to eat clean?? How are they different? Is one REALLY better than the other? Let’s find out!

Paleo Diet

When it comes to the paleo diet, basically all ya gotta do is eat like our Paleolithic ancestors did before the agricultural revolution. In other words, eat  like the cavemen (and cave women) did. No grain, no dairy, no legumes (including peanuts) and no sugar. Oh, and no measuring or calorie counting either. Lean meats are a go as long as they are organic, have been fed a natural diet (as if they were roaming free on a prairie somewhere) and are antibiotic/hormone free. Organic veggies get two thumbs way up, fruit is good too (in limited amounts, due to fructose) and healthy, natural occurring, fats (avocados, olives, olive oil and coconut) are okay too along with nuts and seeds (minus the peanuts I mentioned earlier, of course). Recipes are sweetened with fruit/fruit juice. The most regimented of those eating a paleo diet actually follow what’s called the Whole30 plan, but I’m not going to go into that today, I’m trying to simplify all this, not the opposite. For more information on the paleo diet, click here.

Clean Eating

Clean eating on the other hand, though similar in a lot of aspects, differs in a few ways. Low fat dairy products, all natural sugar substitutes (such as honey, xylitol, stevia and maple syrup -the real stuff guys, not Mrs. Butterworth’s), legumes and whole grains are okay. That still means no “white” anything, but wheat, brown rice and millet, for example, are okay. One down side to clean eating for me personally is that not all clean eating recipes are gluten free, so if that is an issue for you as well, you may have to look into substitutes for wheat flour. Basically, the concept behind clean eating is to abundantly eat foods as close to their natural state and you can get them, as if you went out the back door and picked the food yourself. There is no specific guideline as to calorie counting on this diet, some people do, others don’t. To find out more about clean eating, click here.

Paleo vs. Clean Eating

So in the paleo vs. clean eating debate, which “side of the fence” are you on? Which one is better for you and your family? Clean eating is the route that most people go with, at least to start, as it offers the most flexibility. Try them both out and see which one gives you the most energy, obliterates your cravings and makes your life happier, healthier and ultimately, longer. Either way, you are getting rid of the processed junk and replacing it with real food. As a personal fitness training expert, trust me, your body is going to thank you for it! 🙂

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