What Is Neutral Eating?

Neutral Eating is a practical means to eating less sugar.

It’s practical in the sense that Neutral Eating is not a diet. There is no plan. There is nothing to count. There is no “eat this,” or “don’t eat that.” 

Rather, Neutral Eating illuminates basic food logic. We all know sugar is bad. We all know it would do our bodies good to eat less.

Neutral Eating offers resources to make “eating less sugar” an achievable reality (whatever that might look like to you). 

Because you can eat flavorful, satisfying meals and stay healthy. You can eat till you’re full and stay lean. You can enjoy your food and support your body at the same time. And it’s easier than you think. 

Welcome to Neutral Eating. Everything you need to know can be found on this one page. 

How Do I Eat Less Sugar?

is sugar bad

To eat less sugar, you need a basic understanding of calories. 

Simply put, calories are energy. 

  • Sugar is energy
  • Fat is energy.
  • Protein, fiber (vegetables), vitamins and minerals are NOT significant sources of energy.

Calories come from fat and sugar. That’s all there is to it. 

The aim of Neutral Eating is to eat less sugar. If you eat less sugar, you have to accommodate for lost energy. You have to eat more fat. 

Is Fat Bad?

neutral eating food list

Fat is not cheeseburgers, pizza, fries, and a milkshake (all of that stuff is full of sugar btw…). 

Look at whole foods that are high in fat and it becomes clear that fat is a quality source of energy:

  • Fat does not spike your blood sugar
  • High-fat foods are full of vitamins and minerals
  • Fat is filling
  • Fat is full of flavor

Check out this extensive list of fatty foods. If you want to eat less sugar, replace it with these nutritious and flavorful fatty foods:

All-Inclusive List of Fatty Foods

  • Eggs
  • Avocados
  • Nuts (Almonds, pistachios, pecans, etc.)
  • Seeds (pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, etc)
  • Oil (olive and avocado oil)
  • Mayonnaise (eggs and avocado oil)
  • Coconut
  • Chia seeds (cha cha cha chia)
  • Flax seeds
  • Hemp Hearts
  • Dark Chocolate (85% is the magic number)
  • Fish
  • Animal Fat
  • Dairy

Is animal fat healthy?

Wait a minute… Don’t eat the dark meat? Don’t eat the skin? Avoid fatty cuts of meat? 

If we’re going to eat meat, shouldn’t we make proper use of the animal? 

Neutral Eating says to eat the whole animal! It’s nutritious. It’s humane. It’s sustainable. It’s cost effective. It makes sense.

You’d be surprised by how many meals one chicken provides (around 17 meals). And one cow can feed an entire family for 8-12 months! 

Lean cuts, fatty cuts, skin, and all that other good stuff (link), doing right by the animal means you get to eat it all!

Related: Guide to Whole Animal Eating (coming soon)

Is dairy healthy?

is dairy bad

Neutral eating says there is only one bad ingredient: sugar. But what about dairy? 

  • Cheese
  • Butter
  • Milk (watch out for added sugar in milk)

It’s true, dairy is sugar free. But is it healthy? 

Yes, there are positive health benefits to dairy, but there is a general consensus that too much dairy can have adverse effects on health. This makes sense to us.

We know dairy cows have to be pregnant to produce milk. If everyone consumed dairy all of the time, dairy farming could become abusive and unsustainable…

So yeah, go for less dairy. And when you do choose dairy, choose a sustainable farm with pasture-raised cows. 

Sugar and Carbohydrates 101

Let’s cover everything you need to know about sugar and carbohydrates.

When a carbohydrate is digested, it breaks down into sugar. To eat less sugar means to eat fewer carbohydrates.

But let’s not be so quick to cut carbs completely. Not all carbohydrates are bad.

Here is what you need to know:

When a carbohydrate is easy to digest, it is less healthy for the body.

When a carbohydrate is difficult to digest, it is more healthy for the body. 

Sugar, juice, soda

Sugar is effortless to digest. Sugar and juice cause your blood-sugar to surge which is unhealthy for the body.  

White bread, white pasta, white rice

White carbohydrates are easy to digest. They spike your blood sugar which is unhealthy for the body.

Fibery foods

When you think of fibery foods, think of natural, whole foods like squash, fruits, and whole grain.

When you eat high-fiber foods, the carbohydrate becomes surrounded by a fibrous gel [source].

A carbohydrate surrounded by fibrous gel is difficult to digest. When a carbohydrate is difficult to digest, sugar is released slowly into the bloodstream. Natural carbohydrates are a healthy source of energy.

simple carbs vs complex carbs


What Do Neutral Eaters Eat? 

healthy neutral eating foods
  • Lots of Vegetables (cook them so that they’re fatty and delicious)
  • Plant-based fats (See above: All-Inclusive List of Fatty Foods)
  • Eggs
  • Mushrooms
  • Oil, vinegar, and sugar-free condiments
  • Fermented/Pickled Foods (Kimchi, Pickles, ginger, sauerkraut)
  • Fibery carbohydrates (Peppers, Squash, Quinoa)
  • Fish
  • Meat (whole animal eating)
  • Fruits
  • Dairy (in limited quantities)
  • Desserts with Stevia and/or Sugar alcohols (Check out our desserts page)

What Foods Should I Avoid?

  • Junk food – (junk food substitutes)
  • Soda (Soda Substitutes) 
  • Juice  (Is fruit juice bad?)
  • Baked goods – (see our sugar-free baking page)
  • Flour (flour substitutes)
  • Rice (rice substitutes)
  • Pasta (pasta substitutes)
  • Bread (bread substitutes)
  • Potatoes (potato substitutes)

Want a full list of Neutral Eating (sugar-free) staples?

Download our free food guide.

    Nourish Yourself

    Don’t let food be an enemy. Food is nourishment!

    Neutral eating is a thoughtful, sensible and sustainable way to eat food that is conducive to the mind, body, community and planet. And the food is bomb!

    But remember, Neutral Eating is not a diet. There are no numbers to hit. There are no goals to achieve. 

    Yes, we know sugar is bad. Yes, we know it would do our bodies good to eat less.

    But how you choose to respond to this information is your own.

    Remember to be kind to yourself. Go at your own pace. And whatever you choose to eat (sugar or no sugar), do so consciously and enjoy!

    Thank you for your attention. May you be well.


    healthy eating on a budget