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Using Clean Eating To Burn Fat (Includes Sample Menu)

If you have been wanting to eat better and clean up your diet, clean eating is a healthy way to start by choosing foods that are more nutrient-rich, and minimally processed. While not it is not a diet, eating clean is most certainly a great start, and a nutritious way to nourish your body. By adopting a clean eating lifestyle, you'll get to enjoy the many benefits of a healthier body. Grab yourself a lemon-strawberry infused water, and come learn how its done!

Let's be clear, burning unwanted body fat involves more than just exercise; your daily habits, especially your nutritional intake and diet, play a pivotable role in successful fat loss. This is why eating clean, if done correctly, can be a powerful way to help boost and achieve your desired fat loss results. And without dieting. In this post, I'm spilling the tea on how you can use effectively clean eating for fat loss by following only a few key guidelines. I've also included a beginner's 5-Day Clean Eating Meal Plan to help you get started and eat for healthy fat loss.


Now, if you are totally new to clean eating I recommend you go read my beginner's guide to clean eating or this post on how to get started to help familiar yourself with the principles. Afterwards, come back here to grab this Nutritionist-approved menu for clean eating that helps to burn fat.


Can I Really Lose Fat Just By Eating Clean?


The short answer yes. The long answer, but it depends. To use clean eating and burn fat you need to stimulate the metabolism. You can do this any number of ways by reducing the appetite, or your overall food intake. As an anti-diet Nutritionist, I am not a big supporter of dieting or calorie deficits especially for women; we use other means in my nutrition clinic and with excellent, long lasting results. So, stimulating the metabolism without restrictions is going to be the focus here, and using the following techniques demonstrates how you can effectively use clean eating to aid fat loss:


Lean Proteins For Clean Eating

Protein a major building block of the human body. You need daily servings of protein, which you can only find in food, to build and maintain muscle mass during weight loss, and to support a feeling of fullness. A wholefood-based diet based on regular servings of lean, clean protein sources, is going to help your body naturally burn more fat.


EXAMPLES: aim for 30g+ of protein at each main meal, and focus snacks on a balance of protein and healthy fats for best results. Choose from lean protein sources like organic, free-range chicken and turkey, fresh caught fish such as salmon, whitening or snapper, or plantbased alternatives to meat like organic, non-GMO tofu, tempeh, or legumes.


Complex Carbohydrates For Clean Eating

These provide your body with sustained energy and can prevent overeating. Carbs are necessary for the female body and are an essential macro needed for hormone balance. Rather than ditch carbs, be more choosy and go for high-fibre options that fill you up faster, are digested slower and provide the most nutrition.


EXAMPLES: choose complex carbohydrates such as quinoa, brown rice, sweet potatoes, and whole grains over white rice or bread. Include a small, half palm-sized serving with each main meal to ensure you feel satiated.


Healthy Fats For Clean Eating 

Eating healthy fats helps to support satiety and works to regulate the hormones involved in fat metabolism. A diet that includes healthy fats also slows down the release of glucose into the blood, which works to keep your blood sugar levels from spiking and crashing–bye-bye sugar cravings. Be sure your plate includes a small thumb-sized serving of healthy, omega-3 rich fats at each main meal.


EXAMPLES: not all fats are created equal, so be sure to include only the healthiest sources of fats such as avocados, eggs, fatty fish like salmon, nuts and seeds, and nutritiously-dense oils such as avocado, coconut, flaxseed or olive oil.


High-Fibre Foods For Clean Eating

If all you did was increased your fibre and water intake, you'd be surprised at the difference it would make to your weight loss. For this reason, you want include high-fibre foods to hep burn fat. Dietary fibre supports digestive health and contributes to a feeling of fullness. Fibre-rich foods also require extra energy to digest, meaning your body has to work to breakdown the food. This naturally draws on more energy and resources in the body, boosting the metabolism in the process. Some of these foods are known as, "negative-caloric", meaning they require more energy to digest then they end up providing the body. A few examples of these foods are celery, citrus such as lemon, limes, and grapefruit, and cucumbers.


EXAMPLES: Build your plate by including super high fibre food choices such as berries (all types), fruit with the skin on, non-starchy, water content vegetables like broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, dark leafy greens, or kale. Include a small amount of whole grains such as rolled oats, wholemeal and high-fibre seeds like chia or flax.


Hydration Is Important For Clean Eating

Proper hydration supports metabolism and can help control hunger, especially those pesky sugar cravings. Aim to drink up to 3 litres of clean water throughout the entire day, spacing it out and sipping often. You'll be surprised if you have not been drinking enough, just how filling water can be, and how effectively it naturally supresses your appetite. You also need to increase your water intake if you are upping your fibre intake to help aid digestion and avoid constipation.


EXAMPLES: Stay hydrated with clean drinking water, unsweetened herbal teas, and homemade infused water.


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5-Day Clean Eating For Fat Loss Menu


When you first start clean eating, remember it's not about restrictions or avoiding food groups. Clean eating is more about refocusing your plate on more nutritious ingredients and recipes. For some this might mean making a few clean eating meals per week on designated 'clean eating days'. For others, clean eating might look like going all in and clearing out the pantry to start fresh with only clean foods in the house. Remember, there is no right or wrong here, just progress in however that looks for you!


To recap, focus your fat-burning meal planning efforts on the following:

 

  • fresh fruits and vegetables in their rawest or least processed form, include the peel

  • whole grains from high-fibre sources, with all their fibre goodness still intact

  • clean meats and proteins from organic, plantbased and hormone-free sources

  • include nuts and seeds, clean cooking oils like avocado, coconut and olive oil

  • healthy fats like avocados, oily fish like salmon, nuts, seeds, clean oils

  • simple ingredients that don’t have long labels or difficult names

 

Your priority when building a healthy, clean eating plate for fat-burning is to always include as much nutrient-rich lean protein and high-fibre ingredients as possible. Balance this out with a little healthy fats, lots of leafy greens, and remember to keep extra hydrated throughout it all.

 

The Menu


For Beginners

Kickstart your fat-burning, clean eating journey by simply using this clean eating meal plan to replace a few meals each week with one ore more of the following suggestions. This is an easy way to ease into a healthy, clean eating plan, especially for those who may have a history of yoyo-dieting. Instead of drastically restricting and removing certain foods, instead simply focus on swapping out processed meals for more of the good stuff. This can prove highly effective in short amount of time, and will naturally crowd out the junk food choices without the stress of dieting or the risk of a rebound.


For Advanced

If you are looking for that all-in type of meal plan, simply use the suggested menu below to eat from on 2-3 days a week. Experiment on your own by swapping a few ingredients for variety, nutritional balance, and to keep things interesting. If the recipe calls for blueberries, know that you can also try blackberries, raspberries and strawberries instead. If a recipe is made with white fish, try it with grilled chicken or lean turkey. Don't be shy about making the recipes more personalised to your tastes and preferences.


Day 1:

Breakfast

Easy Scrambled Eggs & Salad

Scrambled eggs with a generous handful of fresh spinach make a quick and easy fat-burning meal when you are short on time or ingredients. You can choose to serve this as is, or pile on a whole-grain or low carb slice of toast with smashed avocado and sprinkle of bacon bits. Follow this meal up with a warm cup of metabolism-boosting green tea.


Snack

Greek Yoghurt Parfait

A small bowl of plain Greek yogurt with a scoop of vanilla protein powder and nut butter stirred in makes a delicious, dessert-like snack or main meal depending on the serving size. Add a small handful of fresh, low carb, high-fibre blueberries on top for a burst of natural sweetness. For a lovely dessert-style option, sprinkle the yoghurt parfait with a little cinnamon, crushed walnuts, and tiny drizzle of my raw chocolate sauce, recipe here. Afterwards, sip on a nutritious dandelion root tea, which will help detox and flush the colon, aiding weight loss.


Lunch

Fat-Burning Grapefruit Salad

Grapefruit is a well-known, fat-burning food that contains plant compounds which can boost the metabolism and increase natural fat-loss. Make a simple salad with a large handful of arugula leaves topped with grapefruit wedges and a sprinkling of pomegranate seeds. Add a little grated parmesan cheese for a little extra punch of flavour (pictured above), or pair with a fillet of grilled chicken or white fish. Enjoy this light meal with a cup of ginger tea to hydrate and energise for the afternoon.


Snack

Avocado Chocolate Pudding

Fat-burning avocado pudding made with an avocado, oh yes you can! Try adding an avocado to a blender with a scoop or two of of vanilla or chocolate protein powder, splash of pure vanilla extract and almond milk, and 1 tbsp of raw cacao powder. Blend well and pour into a small bowl. Cover with plastic wrap pressed into the surface to avoid blackening, then chill for 2 hours. Enjoy as a mid-afternoon snack or guiltless dessert (pictured above middle). Follow this with a cup of licorice tea. .


Dinner

Baked Salmon & Veggies

Salmon is a densely nutritious, fatty fish, and one of my top foods for weight loss and naturally balancing the blood sugar. Try it baked or grilled in basic spices, and served on a 1/3 cup of cooked quinoa with a generous side of steamed broccoli and cauliflower. Finish this meal off with a cup of peppermint tea to aid digestion.


Day 2:

Breakfast

Green Goddess Protein Smoothie

Boost your morning energy with this high-protein smoothie. It's made with 250ml unsweetened almond milk, 1 cup spinach, 1/2 semi-ripe banana, 2 scoops vanilla protein powder, and 1/2 ripe avocado. Blend until velvety smooth; add ice if you love that creamy, soft-serve ice cream consistency. Be sure to drink a good litre of water after this between breakfast and lunchtime.


Snack

Veggies & Hummus

Simple is sometimes the best. Enjoy several sliced cucumber or celery sticks (negative-caloric) with a 2 tbsp serving of hummus. You can add a little cayenne spice to hummus to fire up the metabolism, and pair this snack off with a cup of green tea for an additional metabolism boost.


Lunch

Mexican Quinoa Bean Bowl

Create a quick and easy Mexican themed, high-fibre quinoa bowl with 1/2 cup cooked quinoa topped with 1/4 cup black beans, 3 tbsp cooked corn, 1/4 cup finely diced cherry tomatoes, and a homemade avocado guacamole. Complete the meal with lemon ginger tea to stay hydrated and refresh afterwards.


Dinner

Warm Kale Salad

End the day with a warm kale salad made with 1 cup of shredded, raw or wilted kale topped with 1/2 cup roasted sweet potato, and 1/2 an avocado. Full recipe can be found here. Finish this with a cup of peppermint tea for digestion.


Day 3:

Breakfast

Protein Overnight Oats

Make this pot of high protein overnight oats by adding 3 tbsp raw oats, 1 scoop vanilla or chocolate protein powder, 1/2 tsp vanilla extract, 1 tsp stevia, and 1 tbsp chia seeds to a jar. Cover with unsweetened almond milk, stir well and chill overnight. To serve, add 2-3 finely chopped strawberries and a sprinkle of walnuts to the top and eat straight from the jar. Hydrate with a green tea afterwards.


Snack

Celery Sticks & Spicy Hummus

Enjoy 2-3 celery sticks (negative-caloric) with spicy chill oil stirred into a generous scoop of hummus. Follow this with a cup of green tea to aid digestion and rev up the metabolism for the afternoon.


Lunch

Tuna & Hard-boiled Egg Arugula Salad

Make a high-protein arugula salad topped with tuna and a hard-boiled egg, the recipe can be found here. If you are vegan or don't eat eggs or fish, you can swap these for spiced tofu, beans or another clean, lean animal protein of your choice. Sip a lemon ginger tea afterwards for that metabolism boost.


Dinner

High-fibre Buddha Bowl

Create a deliciously, filling wholefood Buddha Bowl like this one, made with cooked brown rice or quinoa topped with greens, tomatoes, cucumber and avocado. A drizzle of lemon or grapefruit juice is all you need for dressing. Finish the meal with a peppermint or chamomile tea to aid digestion.


Day 4:

Breakfast

High Protein Mango Smoothie

Try this super tasty mango smoothie recipe for weight loss, click here. Its made with mango, oranges, pineapple and vanilla flavoured protein powder for an orange creamsicle-like flavour I swear you'll love at first sip. Follow this with a cup of green tea to boost the metabolism.


Snack

Nut Butter Apple Rings

Make a light, satisfying snack from almond butter spread on green apple slices and a dusting of metabolism revving cinnamon. Enjoy with a cup of green tea or lemon ginger for an energy boost.


Lunch

Easy Avocado & Egg Salad

Try this quick and easy lunch by throwing together a handful or spinach greens, 1-2 hard-boiled eggs and half an avocado in a bowl, see recipe here. This meal works well to balance blood sugar and reduce sugar cravings later in the day. Finish the meal off with a fennel tea for digestion and to keep hydrated.


Dinner

Low Carb Chicken Skewers

Tonight make low carb chicken or turkey skewers with capsicums and red onions. Chop the ingredients into small cubes and thread on on bamboo skewers to cook in the oven or on the BBQ grill. Enjoy a peppermint or lavender tea afterwards to relax and aid digestion.


Day 5

Breakfast

Green Goddess Super Slimmer Smoothie

Today enjoy my super slimmer smoothie for breakfast, find the recipe here. Follow up this breakfast with a cup of green tea for that metabolism boost, and be sure to keep hydrated throughout the morning for the best results.


Snack

Berry & Mixed Nuts

A handful of fresh blueberries paired with 2 tbsp of mixed seeds like sunflower, pumpkin, pine nut or flaxseed. This snack provides satiating healthy fats and protein with a burst of sweetness from the berries. Compliment this with a rooibos or plain black tea to help you feel and stay full.


Lunch

Watermelon Feta Salad

Make my famous watermelon feta salad made with arugula leaves, chopped watermelon and crumbled feta cheese. It's light, sweet and yet surprisingly filling. Enjoy a lemon ginger tea afterwards to support energy levels and digestion.


Dinner

Low Carb Prawn Tacos

Try my low carb spin on healthy Cajun prawn tacos, you'll find the recipe here. If you don't eat seafood or are allergic, you can swap the prawns for chicken or tofu for an equally satisfying meal. Follow this tasty dinner up with peppermint or fennel tea to support digestion.


Nutritionist's Note

Clean Eating Meal Plan & Lifestyle

There you go, healthy clean eating ideas to help you burn more fat! In addition to following this and other clean eating meal plans, I recommend for best results, that you also combine this meal plan with regular HIIT-style exercise and adequate sleep for a well-rounded approach to natural fat loss. Remember, making noticeable progress takes time, so be patient and celebrate those small victories along the way!!


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One Last Thing, Before You Go...


If you really enjoy these recipes... stick around with a cup of peppermint tea and browse this blog for more clean eating recipes, nutrition and healthy eating guides, and be sure to grab my free Wholefood Recipe Collection, click here. You'll receive my Nutritionist-approved clean eating recipes to sample this week. Learn how to ease into healthy, wholefood eating that won't take you hours in the kitchen to eat clean and healthy. Come grab a copy, click here.


Emma Lisa, Nutritionist & Women's Practitioner

Emma Lisa, Nutritionist at Eat Nourish Glow

Emma Lisa is a Nutritionist & Women's Health Practitioner with over 12+ years experience in wholefood nutrition, meal planning and health coaching. She is a published cookbook author, passionate food recipe creator and lifestyle blogger, and an advocate for women's health and anti-diet culture. When she's not in clinic, Emma is mum to five kids, in her test kitchen and a wellness digital creator. She lives in Sydney, Australia.
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Healthy + happiness,

Emma Lisa xx

HEALTH & NUTRITION PRACTITIONER