If you were a child in the 70s or 80s, chances are you’ve heard of or experienced the Clean Plate Club. You know the one, where you are expected to eat every last morsel of food on your plate because there are starving children in the world who have nothing to eat.
My personal version of this was a face-off against ten lonely, shriveled, tasteless lima beans. My parents made me sit at the table for HOURS after dinner ended until I finished every last lick of limas.
I have wonderful parents, but this was such a horrid experience for me that I never let them live it down, AND I definitely don’t raise my two young sons this way.
As a mother and cook, I knew I needed to take a more modernized approach to feeding my family, which I refer to as the Clean Plate Club 2.0. We eat healthy, we eat clean, we don’t eat massive portions just because they are on our plates, and if you don’t like lima beans, by God, you don’t have to eat them!
This is a great time to introduce the Clean Plate Club 2.0 concept to our followers, as it’s cervical cancer awareness month, which is top of mind for us here at Gennev.
Cervical cancer is highly preventable and treatable, provided that people take the steps to get screened and vaccinated. While the biggest risk factor for cervical cancer is an HPV infection, there are other health-related risk factors, including a diet low in fruits and vegetables and being overweight.
In 431 B.C., Hippocrates, the father of medicine, wisely said, “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” We’ve all heard this before, but I always return to this quote as it is a reminder of the medicinal properties wholesome food can have on us. Now remember, in 431 B.C., people didn’t eat food out of boxes or wrappers, they ate fruits, veggies, whole grains and certainly weren’t eating foods that had been genetically modified!
So the Clean Plate Club 2.0 is loosely based on this revolutionary quote. As a nutrition coach, my mission is to educate you on the role that smart nutrition plays in nourishing your mind and body, and preventing illnesses like cancer.
I’m introducing Clean Plate Club 2.0 because studies have shown that you can fight cancer with food, particularly plant-based foods because they contain phytonutrients and other special compounds.
Participating in the Clean Plate Club 2.0 is easy. Here are three basic rules to follow:
Cruciferous vegetables like arugula, kale, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts and broccoli are low in calories, high in nutrients, and have sulfur-containing compounds with cancer-fighting properties. Opt to include two servings of veggies on your dinner plate with a small (optional) serving of whole grains and a small serving (4 oz or less) of lean protein.
Instead, add flavor to your dishes with real ingredients: healthy fats such as olive oil, avocado, Greek yogurt, lemon/lime juice and zest and spices like turmeric, cinnamon, ginger and curcumin, known for their anti-inflammatory properties. For example, make a quick and easy salad dressing with olive oil, lemon juice and curcumin instead of pouring a calorie-dense, preservative-laden bottled dressing onto your next salad.
Meat, cheese, and butter can be rich in saturated fat, which has been linked to obesity — a big cancer predictor. Look at these products as a treat, and a special accessory to your plate when you have them. If you are going to eat animal fat, splurge on organic, grass-fed meat and butter and sprinkle cheese onto foods sparingly.
The benefits of joining the Clean Plate Club 2.0 are numerous, but like anything else, you need to be consistent 95 percent of the time to see results. In addition to combating cancer, you’ll increase your energy levels, improve digestion and gut health, enjoy a clear complexion and feel lean and strong.
Open enrollment starts today, and I can’t think of a single reason that you shouldn’t join, but the main reason you should: because YOU are worth it.
Cheers to your health,
How do you handle nutrition in your house? We’d love to know more – share with the community in the comments below, or hit us up on Facebook or Midlife & Menopause Solutions, Gennev’s closed Facebook group.