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Help me stop eating processed foods! Clean eating mamas, come here!

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I need help! I really want to stop eating so many processed foods. We have been consuming WAY too much sodium and processed crap lately. I want to change it... but I don't even know where to begin! I have thought about making the change many times.... but I feel like the options are limited. I mean... if you take out all processed foods, what are you left with?!

I am a picky eater and so are my kids so that makes it a little harder. But DH will eat just about anything. lol. We do like chicken, turkey, lean beef and some fish... so meat is no problem. And we also love fresh fruits and most veggies. I already go whole grain as much as possible and we really try to avoid white bread. But where we get caught up is with the frozen foods, processed meats like sliced lunch meat, cheeses, soups, seasonings that are loaded with sodium, boxed mac n cheese and other "convenience foods." I don't cook anything from scratch. I really don't know how.

So... for the moms that "eat clean" .... how do you do it?! What do you eat? Give me some meal ideas and examples of what a typical day of meals / snacks looks like in YOUR house.

pregnant

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by on Jan. 23, 2013 at 11:15 PM
Replies (51-60):
MommaTasha1003
by Silver Member on Jan. 24, 2013 at 9:46 AM

try using real seasoning...cayane pepper, fresh garlic, chop up onions, red pepper.. Look on the back of any packaged stuff you like & try to copy it with the real seasoning. I bet if you google the packs you like u can find "home-made" versions.

Also 1 tip: Try to cut down on salt & over time ur taste buds will change. My BIL was in the hospital for 2mo & when he got out all his usual favorites tasted gross because of all the salt in processed food..

Quoting Mom2five87:

I get the whole idea of making everything yourself instead of buying premade... but with most of that stuff you listed, how do you make it yourself and make it BETTER for you than the premade versions? I mean... with homemade mac n cheese ... you still have to use cheese. It's not the powdered kind but all cheese has a lot of sodium. Same for lasagna... the sauce and cheese are loaded with sodium and preservatives. And maybe I'm wrong but I think it is almost imossible to make low sodium soups that taste good. For example, one of our favorites is taco soup. It requires a packet of taco seasoning and a packet of dry ranch dressing mix... and then all the beans and stuff that go into it. I can see substituting the canned ingredients for frozen veggies or dried beans... but what do you do for the seasonings? That is the part that usually puts the sodium through the roof!

Quoting Anonymous:

Let me say, if you eat everything from scratch then you're out in the garden picking your own stuff basically. 

Learn a few basics and go from there: Homemade Mac & Cheese, Chili, Soups (if you desire), lasagna. You should be just fine. 



Anonymous
by Anonymous 9 on Jan. 24, 2013 at 9:49 AM
Mrs. Dash makes a delicious line of no sodium and low sodium seasonings. I made tacos one night, for my kids, using mrs. Dash fiesta lime no sodium seasoning and the kids LOVED it. Said it was better than their usual tacos (from that little packet). We've also replaced spaghetti with spaghetti squash.
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LntLckrsCmQut
by on Jan. 24, 2013 at 9:53 AM
3 moms liked this

This simply is not true. Cheese isn't loaded with sodium unless you are buying crap cheese.

It isn't impossible to make low sodium/no sodium soups. I make my own broth and I don't add salt to it. Bam, a no sodium soup. If you make your own tomato sauce, you can eliminate the sodium  there, as well. Or, just add the amount you want.  You can also eliminate preservatives by making your own sauces.

Instead of using packaged taco seasoning, make your own.


You can also make your own dry ranch mix.

I use a lot of herbs and spices for seasoning but I do use salt in small doses. I also use a lot of onions and garlic for seasoning.

Find yourself a bulk spice/herb section. The choices are endless.

Quoting Mom2five87:

I get the whole idea of making everything yourself instead of buying premade... but with most of that stuff you listed, how do you make it yourself and make it BETTER for you than the premade versions? I mean... with homemade mac n cheese ... you still have to use cheese. It's not the powdered kind but all cheese has a lot of sodium. Same for lasagna... the sauce and cheese are loaded with sodium and preservatives. And maybe I'm wrong but I think it is almost imossible to make low sodium soups that taste good. For example, one of our favorites is taco soup. It requires a packet of taco seasoning and a packet of dry ranch dressing mix... and then all the beans and stuff that go into it. I can see substituting the canned ingredients for frozen veggies or dried beans... but what do you do for the seasonings? That is the part that usually puts the sodium through the roof!

Quoting Anonymous:

Let me say, if you eat everything from scratch then you're out in the garden picking your own stuff basically. 

Learn a few basics and go from there: Homemade Mac & Cheese, Chili, Soups (if you desire), lasagna. You should be just fine. 



LntLckrsCmQut
by on Jan. 24, 2013 at 10:02 AM

Invest in America's test kitchen cookbook. They have so many good recipes but they also show you step by step instructions.

Quoting Mom2five87:

I definitely want to go lower sodium but I also want to go a little more natural. And I would really like to start making things myself instead of buying premade versions or boxed mixes. I've just never really done that and I don't know what I'm doing. lol

Quoting Anonymous:

It seems like you just want to go low sodium. You cam buy things that are already low sodium or salt free or made with sea salt. Just start reading each box you pick up.



MelanieMans
by Sapphire Member on Jan. 24, 2013 at 10:07 AM

 Really, all that stuff is clean eating? If I would have known thast I would have did this a long time ago :) Thanks


Quoting Anonymous:

Maybe my meal list will help you? If not, sorry for being boring lol

This week for dinners I'm making

Chicken fajitas with rice and beans
Burgers on the grill with a salad
BBQ pork chops with pasta salad and a veggie
Taco night
Crock pot buffalo chicken with raw broccoli and carrots and ranch to dip
Philly cheese steak wraps

For breakfast we do things like eggs and toast, PB toast, homemade muffins, oatmeal, and we always eat a fruit too. Sometimes I'll make a quiche for the week, usually with bacon and broccoli and cheese. I sometimes make a batch of breakfast burritos for the freezer too, we just have to microwave them.


 

Anonymous
by Anonymous 2 on Jan. 24, 2013 at 10:10 AM

It can be! They're all fresh, homemade, real ingredients. They're also all organic too, but that's a whole different subject lol. All of those meals could be made from junk and processed food too, so it just depends on how you make it. 

Quoting MelanieMans:

 Really, all that stuff is clean eating? If I would have known thast I would have did this a long time ago :) Thanks


Quoting Anonymous:

Maybe my meal list will help you? If not, sorry for being boring lol

This week for dinners I'm making

Chicken fajitas with rice and beans
Burgers on the grill with a salad
BBQ pork chops with pasta salad and a veggie
Taco night
Crock pot buffalo chicken with raw broccoli and carrots and ranch to dip
Philly cheese steak wraps

For breakfast we do things like eggs and toast, PB toast, homemade muffins, oatmeal, and we always eat a fruit too. Sometimes I'll make a quiche for the week, usually with bacon and broccoli and cheese. I sometimes make a batch of breakfast burritos for the freezer too, we just have to microwave them.




Anonymous
by Anonymous 10 on Jan. 24, 2013 at 10:12 AM

I shop the perimiter of the store , whole wheat bread, cut sugar,salt eat more vegetables and fruits. 

lifeforchrist
by on Jan. 24, 2013 at 10:15 AM

real salt is good for you. the junk table salt thats way over processed in canned soups and other goods are not. Thats the point of avoiding canned stuff, because of preservatives. make your own pasta sauce, its not hard and you can have salt. Its about moderation. Our society likes to go nuts and say 'no fat' 'no salt' and demonize something thats making you fat. Well if you will demonize something demonize all food that comes out of a box. its processed has has like 1% of its original nutrition. so ditch the boxes and start making from scratch. if you want pasta buy the noodles but buy tomatoes and make the sauce. go on pinterest and find some recipes. Cheeses are fine too as long as they aren't those stupid processed singles. buy real cheese.

birthymom4
by on Jan. 24, 2013 at 10:21 AM
Quoting Mom2five87:


Get on pinterest.com





 

themissheather
by Gold Member on Jan. 24, 2013 at 10:21 AM
I try to make as much from scratch as possible. For example, I will roast a chicken and then use it for dinner, make stock with the bones and freeze it, and then make chicken salad with leftovers. I make meatballs and sauce in a quantity large enough for multiple meals and freeze the extra. You can also get pizza dough and make your own pizzas. I do not make condiments (yet), so I have ketchup, hot sauce, ranch dressing etc in the fridge. I just try to make things that can have multiple uses, be eaten for several days, or I can freeze. If you have more specific questions I'd be happy to help as much as possible.
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