One of my goals in recent years has been to eat smarter. Smarter, meaning clean and conscious despite forever counting calories and calculating fat grams. We over analyze and obsess over diets, turn food into an enemy and friend, eat too much and too little, crave it and then avoid it. With such paradoxes, I’m training myself to become more conscious of what types of food I eat and to enjoy it at the same time.

My mornings usually begin with a glass of lemon water. Lemon water is an excellent way to cleanse your system of impurities because it flushes out all the toxins. Another alternative is eating a grapefruit, which provide the same metabolizing benefits.

Here are some of my favourite smart and clean foods:

1) Chia seeds: The latest multipurpose “superfood” rich in omega-3’s, high in protein and fiber with insane amounts of antioxidants. They are gluten-free and abundant in nutrients. I usually mix these chia seeds in my yogurt with fresh fruit as a snack. Flax seeds are ideal to use as well.

2) Almonds: A member from the nut family that helps improve your diet. Almonds are dense in vitamins and minerals that help keep you feel full longer, which is why they’re great for snacking (with blueberries)! Definitely give almond milk and almond butter a try too (Fresh’s Date Almond shake from their juice bar… do it, SO GOOD aka you’re seriously missing out).

3) Kale: This is probably one of my favorite new foods I recently discovered. How do I even begin to describe this awesome leaf? Kale is all around good for you. It’s iron plentiful and is ideal for detox with its fiber and sulfur components. I toss these babies in my power smoothies or in E.V.O.O. to bake crispy kale chips. Yum.

4) Avocado: Avocados are the “healthy fat” food. They’re packed with heart healthy compounds and nutrients. Its rich texture and buttery consistency makes it a flexible ingredient to use. Nothing compares to homemade guacamole or avocado spread on toast with two hardboiled eggs for breakfast.

5) Edamame: I’m always munching on these guys, mostly at sushi restaurants (AYCE holla.) As a natural source of isoflavones, edamame also neutralizes the effects of free radicals on your body. They are extremely high in protein, fiber and anti-inflammatory properties. Edamame is great for the ladies who need a boost of estrogen or pre-workout energy!

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