Getting REAL: Whole Dairy

Posted by Allyson Straka on

To make dairy products low fat, it’s not enough to remove the fat. You then have to go to great lengths to preserve the body or creamy texture by working in all kinds of food additives. In the case of low-fat or skim milk, that usually means adding powdered milk. But powdered milk contains oxidized cholesterol, which scientists believe is much worse for your arteries than ordinary cholesterol, so food makers sometimes compensate by adding antioxidants, further complicating what had been a simple one-ingredient whole food. Also, removing the fat makes it that much harder for your body to absorb the fat-soluble vitamins that are one of the reasons to drink milk in the first place.Michael Pollen

If you currently eat low-fat or non-fat dairy products, you are going to want to switch to the full-fat unsweetened versions. When the fat is removed from dairy products, like milk, some of the beneficial nutrients are lost with the fat as well…and the resulting product doesn’t taste very good…so the food manufacturers will then add sugar and artificial sweeteners to make the food palatable again.

full fat dairyFull-fat and unsweetened dairy products such as milk, yogurt, eggs, cheese and butter are actually REAL food! When possible, purchase organic and pasture-raised options. Milk from pastured cows contains more omega-3’s and more of vitamins A and E. Eggs from pastured hens have less saturated fat, less cholesterol, double the omega-3’s (health-promoting fats), three times the vitamin D, and substantially more vitamin A and E than factory-farmed eggs.

A study published in 2015 in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition supports that a diet containing full-fat dairy is good for the heart. In the study's three-week trial, researchers compared people on a low-fat-dairy diet to those on a high-fat one. The high-fat group experienced a decrease in triglyceride levels, and the low-fat group experienced a drop in “bad” LDL cholesterol. However, people eating full-fat dairy didn’t experience a rise in LDL cholesterol, and the low-fat group noticed a drop in beneficial HDL cholesterol.

While eating full-fat dairy is recommended on a clean eating regimen, it is also very important not to forget that 80% of what you eat should be plant-based. That leaves just 20% for animal-based products...including full-fat dairy. So, it's one of those in moderation items.

Missed our other Getting REAL blog posts? Check them out here...

Getting REAL With Clean Eating

Getting REAL: Fruits and Vegetables

Getting REAL: Whole Grains

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Getting REAL: Whole Grains

Posted by Allyson Straka on

Whole grains are an excellent source of nutrition, as they contain essential enzymes, iron, dietary fiber, vitamin E, and B-complex vitamins. Because the body absorbs grains slowly, they provide sustained and high-quality energy.

Whole grains contain the entire grain kernel, the bran, germ, and endosperm. Examples of whole grains include whole-wheat flour, bulgur (cracked wheat), oatmeal, quinoa, and brown rice. Refined grains have been milled, a process that removes the bran and germ. This is done to give grains a finer texture and improve their shelf life, but it also removes dietary fiber, iron, and many B vitamins. Some examples of refined grain products are white flour, white bread, and white rice.

During your Getting REAL journey, you'll want to begin switching out refined grains for whole grains. Below are some examples of whole grains…try to challenge yourself to experiment with some whole grains that are new to you. If you have a gluten sensitivity, you’ll want to avoid any gluten-containing grains.

whole grain cooking times 

What About Bread?

Have you checked the list of ingredients on your store-bought sandwich bread? Even if buying whole-wheat bread, there is a good chance it is filled with upwards of 30 or more ingredients that may contain high-fructose corn syrup, chemical dough conditioners, added sugars, artificial flavorings or coloring and GMOs.

If looking to purchase store-bought bread, target sprouted grain or Ezekiel breads and as always…be sure to read the ingredients for any that aren’t real food.

Did you know that it only takes 4 ingredients to make bread – flour, yeast, water and salt? Not only is it just a few ingredients, it’s also very easy to make your own bread! Make it your goal to at least experiment with making your own bread during your Getting REAL journey.

Simple Whole Wheat Bread

homemade whole wheat bread
Ingredients
6 cups unbromated whole-wheat flour
1 ½ tablespoons quick acting yeast
2 ½ cups warm water (not hot)
1/3 cup raw honey
1/3 cup coconut oil
3 teaspoons salt
    Instructions
    Mix 2 cups whole wheat flour with the yeast. Mix in the warm water with a whisk until well-blended. Cover with a dish towel and set it aside for about 15 minutes so it begins to “sponge”. While this is sitting, put the raw honey and coconut oil in a small saucepan and heat on low just until it melts and easily pours. Stir in the melted coconut oil and raw honey with the yeast mixture. Then add in the remaining 4 cups of whole wheat flour along with the salt. Mix as well as you can with a spoon and then mix with your hands until its well blended. Take it out of the bowl and knead on a counter top for about 10 minutes. You’ll need to add more flour a little bit at a time to keep it from sticking. Split the dough into 2 equal loaves and place in 2 greased loaf pans. Then you are going to want to set them in a warm place in the kitchen for about 60 minutes to proof. Preheat the oven to 350°. When the bread has proofed for 60 minutes, bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and immediately take out of bread pans and place on rack to cool.
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    Our Favorite Thanksgiving Recipes

    Posted by Allyson Straka on

    Since I began my clean eating journey over a decade ago, I have amassed a large amount of recipes...some have turned out great, others not so much. 😂 Thanksgiving is one of those holidays where we find ourselves going back to canned goods and processed foods to make our holiday favorites. This Thanksgiving, try out one or two of the recipes below to switch up your families holiday traditions.

    Tips To "Clean Up" Your Favorite Recipes

    • Substitute raw honey or pure maple syrup when a recipe calls for sugar or brown sugar. 
    • Use a healthy fat oil such as coconut oil or avocado oil in baking recipes.
    • Always use full fat dairy (i.e. cream, milk, butter).
    • Substitue whole wheat flour for white flour.
    • Substitute canned items with fresh or frozen (i.e. green beans).

    Our Favorite Thanksgiving Recipes

    Cinnamon Graham Crackers with Healthy Pumpkin Pie Spiced Hummus recipe

    Cinnamon Graham Crackers With Healthy Pumpkin Pie Spiced Hummus

    Curried Pumpkin Soup Recipe

    Curried Pumpkin Soup With Apple Croutons

    clean eating roasted turkey breast recipe

    Clean Eating Roasted Turkey Breast

    clean eating gravy recipe

    Clean Gravy

    clean green bean casserole recipe

    Clean Green Bean Casserole

    clean cranberry sauce

    Clean Cranberry Sauce

    Amazing Ezekiel Bread Stuffing

    mini pumpkin sage balls

    Mini Pumpkin Sage Balls

    clean pumpkin pie

    Clean Pumpkin Pie

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    Getting REAL: Fruits and Vegetables

    Posted by Allyson Straka on

    To begin your clean eating journey, you'll want to start with the basics...fruits and vegetables. Fruits and vegetables are some of the most nutrient-dense foods you can eat…with green leafy vegetables being at the top! You can eat any and all fruits and vegetables but try to eat a wide-range to ensure you are also getting a wide-range of nutrients. 
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    Getting REAL With Clean Eating

    Posted by Allyson Straka on

    The Getting REAL blog series will provide you with all the information you need to start a clean eating lifestyle by getting back to the basics of eating REAL food.
    Read more →
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