What is Clean Eating…and Why is it Important?
Don't let bad nutrition mess up your bodybuilding schedule. Check out why clean eating is so important, and how you can get the best results.
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Your diet is important for many reasons. A good diet helps you build muscle, lose fat and provides you with the nutrients needed to help you fight illnesses like diabetes and cancer. It’s well known that a good diet comprises a mixture of protein, fruits, vegetables, carbohydrates and dietary fat. The problem many people face today is that even though they are consuming the right foods, these foods aren’t as nutritionally rich as they should be due to the addition of hormones, antibiotics or artificial preservatives. The solution to this problem is clean eating. Clean eating is the best way to eat food with a high nutritional content.
What is Clean Eating?
Clean eating revolves around the idea of eating foods that are natural, organic and minimally processed. It started in the 1960’s as a movement to protest processed foods on the basis of morality and issues facing society at that time. This style of eating attracted bodybuilders who were well aware of the connection between eating nutritionally rich foods and gaining muscle.
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It goes beyond just eating right and focuses on fresh foods, eating small meals multiple times per day, avoiding unnecessary calories like those found in high-calorie drinks and refined foods and incorporating some type of physical exercise into your daily or weekly routine. Clean eating is a lifestyle change that offers many health benefits.
Clean Eating Improves Your Workouts
A diet mostly comprised of processed, high-calorie foods has a very negative effect on the body. It leaves you feeling sluggish and will have monstrous effects on your workout routine. In contrast, a good diet will leave you feeling energized, help you build muscle and increase endurance. An article published in the Journal of Applied Psychology revealed a strong connection between clean eating and athletic performance.
Male athletes were put in a group with some of the athletes receiving a placebo,while others drank 16 ounces of beet-root juice every day for six days. These athletes were then given a cycling test. Among the group that drank the beetroot juice, a 16% increase in endurance was noted when compared with athletes who received a placebo.
Clean Eating Improves Your Sleep
Thomas Dekker, an English dramatist, referred to sleep as a golden chain that ties our health and bodies together. During sleep, the body heals itself from the rigors of everyday life. Cells are rejuvenated, the mind gets a break from the continual processing of information, and muscles grow. Clean eating can help improve the quality of your sleep so that your body can do the job it was born to do, and that is keeping you healthy and happy
In a Taiwanese study, scientists were able to prove how clean eating positively affects sleep patterns. Subjects suffering from sleep disturbances were given kiwi fruit to eat an hour before going to sleep. After a four week period, it was noted that participants fell asleep 35% faster, slept more deeply and slept 13% longer. This is extremely important for bodybuilders because a sounder sleep means increased gains in lean mass and better recovery after workouts.
Clean Eating Improves Cardiovascular Health
Some of the greatest health risks faced by modern society are diabetes, heart attacks, and strokes. Clean eating advocates stress eating organic fruits, vegetables, and healthy fats. Fruits and vegetables help protect the body against heart disease, strokes, and high blood pressure. The Vitamin C found in lots of fruits and vegetables helps keep your blood vessels strong, which contributes to keeping your heart healthy and helps you avoid strokes. Healthy fats like those found in fish, nuts and avocados helps to lower low-density cholesterol (the destructive kind) and raise high-density cholesterol (the good kind).
Eating Clean Prevents Cancer
Processed foods, fried foods and trans fat all contribute to the growth of cancer cells in the body. On the other hand, clean eating helps you fight and prevent cancer. Fresh fruits and vegetables contain phytonutrients and antioxidants, which help the body fight cancer. Broccoli, kale, and tomatoes are especially high in these nutrients and should be a daily part of your clean eating lifestyle.
Clean eating will change your life in many positive ways. It will improve your workouts, your sleep, and your cardiovascular health. It can also help decrease your risk of getting cancer. Clean eating is a lifestyle change that can help you live longer and with a much higher quality of life.
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