How to Eat Clean: A Beginner's Guide

This post may contain affiliate links. Find my affiliate disclosure  here .

This post may contain affiliate links. Find my affiliate disclosure here.

What is clean eating, is it really important and how do I start? These are all questions I plan to answer for you today.

My personal definition of clean eating is eating foods that are as Mother Nature produces them.

This means we want produce that is grown in healthy soil without the use of pesticides, herbicides or fungicides. We want meat and other animal products that don’t contain antibiotics, growth hormone, vaccines or GMO foods.

To be blunt, we want as little interference from man as possible!

Don’t have time to read the post? I get it! You can watch this short video instead.

The importance of eating clean:

Research is showing that pesticides and herbicides lead to a whole host of health issues like poor gut health, cancer, and everything in between.

The main purpose of antibiotics and growth hormone used in conventionally farmed animals are to plump the animals up. What does this mean for us as we’re consuming the antibiotics and growth hormone through the meat?

It means we’re plumping up too!

GMO foods are just plain bad news. This is how I explain it to my clients...when we’re genetically modified, we get disease. Why in the world would we want to put genetically modified food in us?

And I haven’t even started to talk about the processed franken-food that people are getting waaaay too much of in their diet these days that contain sugar, artificial flavor and color, chemicals galore and more nastiness.

With all that being said...YES! It’s important to eat clean.

Another benefit of eating clean is that clean produce and animal products taste SO. MUCH. BETTER! I was truly amazed at the difference in taste, even texture, of clean meat.

It’s so expensive!

One objection I hear often is “But it’s SO expensive!”. I thought that once upon a time also.

The reality is that either we’re paying the slightly higher price for clean foods or we’re paying the much larger price with a poor quality of life, and possibly in medical bills.

This is because clean foods don’t contain the harmful ingredients that ‘other’ food contains such as growth hormone, antibiotics, vaccines, GMO contaminants, pesticides, herbicides.

These are known to contribute to weight gain, inflammation, cancer, and everything in between. Eating conventional (aka non-clean foods) every great once in a while doesn’t cause harm. These toxins have a cumulative effect, which means that they build up over time. And the more we consume them, the more we have building up in our system.

Again, I’m just talking about fruits, veggies and animal products here. We experience even more dis-ease with consumption of processed foods.

**Side note: I have a post with my fave tips on living a healthy lifestyle while on a budget here.

Vote with your dollar

When we eat clean, we’re also having a positive impact on the environment and helping others afford clean food too.

How the heck do we do that?!

It’s called voting with our dollar. I first heard of this while I was going through the certification program to become a Health Coach at IIN.

In a nutshell, voting with our dollar means that when we spend money (whether its on healthy stuff or junky stuff) we’re telling the person who produces that item to keep making more.

When we spend money on clean food, we’re telling farmers to keep growing crops without spraying pesticides or herbicides and to keep raising their animals the way they should be raised.

Overtime, as clean food is more and more in demand, the prices will come down making it more affordable for those who feel they can’t afford it now.

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I have no idea where to start

I know that learning how sick we can get from consuming the wrong foods can be scary. I do like to share that it’s never my intention to scare you. I’m here to educate and empower you to make better choices.

That being said, make one better choice at a time. This will feel less overwhelming both in the way of changing a habit and on your bank account.

Remember, that living a healthy lifestyle is forever. It’s not temporary so there is no rush to get it all right, right now. In the long run, it’s more effective to take baby steps.

How do I know if a food is clean?

Some words to look for that let you know the item you’re about to buy/eat is clean:

  • Grass Fed

  • Pasture Raised

  • Organic (on produce)

Go to a local farmers market and ask the farmer if they spray their crops, if they medicate their live stock, what their animals eat, etc.

How can I eat clean with packaged foods?

While packaged foods generally aren’t ‘clean’, it is possible to find clean-ish choices out there. I go into more detail in this video.


I challenge you to buy 2 types of organic produce or 1 clean meat next time you’re in the grocery store.

Let me know in the comments if you accept this challenge. Or post a pic on Instagram or Facebook and use #HDMhealth so I can see the positive impact you’re having on your health and the environment by eating clean.

As we know better, we do better -


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Hi! I'm Bri....the wife, mom, RN, and Certified Health Coach behind HippieDippieMom. Read more about me here.

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