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"Clean Eating" Vs "Real Food" - What's the Difference?

vegan salad bowl

If you haven’t heard the term “Clean Eating” in the past few years then we can only assume you’ve been living in a cave with no internet and, therefore, no social media.

It is the diet trend of Insta stars, fitness gurus, yogis, bodybuilders and general fitness fans the world over, and when you’re sitting on your phone scrolling through your feed at 11pm at night (when you really ought to be sleeping) you can see why!

Picture after picture of lush looking food, rippling abs, biceps galore and a never-ending stream of a life you wish you led, all of which can be attributed to clean eating.

Well, not quite ALL of which, but the glowing skin and the visible abs certainly can be…

The thing is, not one person can agree on what it actually means to follow the clean eating diet, which is why it there are so many variances to it.

Think of these variances as branches of a tree. They’re rooted in a fundamental theory, but they branch out into different directions with differing outlooks.

She says that by making simple, but nutritious meals and using the same meat twice, meal prepping can be quick and easy.

One such branch is the “Real Food” trend.

On the face of it, it appears to be exactly the same as the clean eating diet, but small dissents have meant the real food trend has amassed its own band of avid followers.

What's the difference?

Vegan Salad Jars

The details of each depend largely on whom you ask, but essentially clean eating is a whole food diet with no refined sugar and targets a reduction of saturated fats whilst upping protein and so called superfoods.

The real food diet also revolves the consumption of whole foods but eating natural, unprocessed foods is permitted all the while the consumption of healthy, good fats is actively encouraged, for instance cows milk and cheese.

Interestingly, neither is a “new” diet. In fact, the modern clean eating diet can trace its origins back to the 1960’s natural food health movement!

Back then, followers of this trend opted for whole foods over processed foods and they curbed their refined sugar intake.

Initially, followers of this movement merely wanted to eat healthier, but soon discovered the weight loss benefits and, as a result, many fitness enthusiasts and people searching to drop a few pounds jumped on the bandwagon.

Since then it’s slowly become more mainstream, and with the development (and our obsession) with social media it’s now considered the norm!

But to really understand the difference between the clean eating and real food diets, we have to delve into the dos and don’ts…

Clean Eating Do's Clean Eating Don'ts
  • Eat only whole, natural, unprocessed foods in their natural state
  • Protein should be consumed at every meal
  • Carbs should be unrefined, brown rice is fine but ancient whole grains are preferable like quinoa
  • Only natural sweeteners must be used – sparingly - like honey
  • All meals should be cooked from scratch
  • Do not eat processed foods at all – this means anything with a label.  If there’s more than one ingredient then avoid.  Of course if you really need a snack that’s made of wholefoods but is processed, choose something like EFECTIV Whole Food Bars… more on these later…
  • No refined sugar or Alcohol
  • No whole dairy – skimmed is ok
  • No empty calories from drinks, choose water
  • Avoid foods with high fat, salt and sugar content
  • No refined grains like white rice
  • No pasta
Real Food Do's Real Food Don'ts
  • Eat whole foods in their natural states
  • Eat as often as you like
  • Cook meals from scratch
  • Use natural sweeteners in moderation
  • Can enjoy whole milk dairy products
  • Eat foods high in good fats like avocado
  • No processed foods
  • No refined sugar
  • No refined grains like white rice
  • No packaged foods unless there are five ingredients or less
  • No fast food
  • No empty calories from drinks, choose water
  • No alcohol

So, aside from being able to enjoy whole dairy and chomping on some tasty avocado, there really isn’t that much difference between the two movements.

The thing is, it’s all well and good advocating such a “clean” lifestyle, but what happens when your cravings threaten to derail your diet?

Luckily, we’ve the answer…

efectiv whole food bars

EFECTIV Whole Food Bars are just what you need in that situation!

These bars are unlike any other protein bar on the market as they’re made from nothing more than simple whole food ingredients.

They’re also high in protein (10g per bar), gluten free, vegan friendly, dairy free and have no added sugar.

They also come in four outstanding flavours and although they may contain more than five ingredients, they’re still far better for you than giving in and chomping down a double decker…

After all, it’s what’s not INSIDE that makes them so good!

Clean eating, real food? Whatever your diet of choice, keep it on track with EFECTIV Whole Food Bars


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