Whether your goal is to lose fat or gain muscle, by eating clean foods, your body can put your reduced or added calorie intake to good use.
Your body needs the right amount of calories to provide you with the energy for day to day life as well as for your workouts.
The clean foods you need should be made up for the three macronutrient groups: Protein, carbs and fat. Most of the time in that order, however percentages are specific to the individual, goals and training types!
So here are the top 15 foods that I make sure I have in the kitchen at all times:
Oats are a great, clean, starchy carb source. I always start my day with oats!
2. Peanut Butter
Peanut butter is my favourite fat source! Try and get a natural one, with no added nasties such as palm oil or sugar.
3. Protein Powder
Try adding a scoop of protein powder to your oats if you have a sweet tooth! Whey Isolate for a post workout shake. Casein protein is a slow releasing protein, perfect for overnight muscle repair and recovery.
4. Coconut Oil
An ideal fat source, it is perfect for replacing cooking oils/butter. I personally add a teaspoon into black coffee with my first meal or pre workout.
A natural, calorie free sweetener (sometimes known as Truvia in the supermarkets). Perfect for sweetening oats, greek yoghurt or black coffee without the calories!
6. 0% Fat Greek Yoghurt
This is the ONLY yoghurt I eat. It is high in protein and with Stevia, sugar free sauces or a scoop of protein, tastes like a dessert!
Skinless chicken breasts are very high in protein, low in fat and 0% in carbs
Broccoli is a great, clean, high in fibre carb source.
A great fat source, I add half an avocado into my salad every day.
Either wholegrain, brown or basmati rice is a brilliant carb source. I personally use Uncle Ben’s instant rice as there are no artificial or added ingredients.
11. Sweet Potato
Try sweet potato wedges, seasoned and roasted in coconut oil for the perfect white potato alternative.
I have added a Banana to my post workout meal, perfect for on the go!
13. Protein Bars
Protein bars are a great portable snack for those with a sweet tooth. I use Matrix Nutrition Caramel High Protein Flapjacks as a post workout meal or for a clean cheat.
14. Dark Chocolate
Dark chocolate is high in fat and lower in sugar than normal milk chocolate, plus high in antioxidants. 2 sqs make a great snack choice for someone with a sweet tooth.
Coffee speeds up the metabolism and is a great, NATURAL pre workout. I have 1-2 cups black coffee a day. If you need it sweeter, then try Stevia a natural zero calorie sweetener.
And don’t forget
Water is essential. I drink between 3 and 4 litres per day to stay hydrated. Often being thirsty is mistaken for hunger and can lead to snacking!
It took me weeks to get used to a clean diet, and which of these clean foods I liked and worked for me.
Don’t give up!