For many of us, 2016 was a doozy, but we here at Brit + Co are ready to hit refresh in 2017! Follow our Hit Refresh series through January for new ideas, hacks and skills that will help you achieve (and maintain!) those New Year’s resolutions.

If you’re trying to eat better in 2017, it can be hard to know where to start. After all, there’s so much conflicting information out there. Should you stick with only vegan foods (after all, jackfruit recipes are pretty much the bomb dot com) or are Paleo recipes the real key to healthy eating? The truth is, it’s possible to eat mindfully whether you’re a carnivore or an herbivore, but you need some background knowledge as to the science behind experts’ food recommendations. Not to fear, these 11 must-read books will help clear everything up so you can separate fact from fiction… and eat *deliciously.*


1. In Defense of Food by Michael Pollan ($10): Michael Pollan is basically the health food world’s equivalent of a rockstar. His book In Defense of Food should be the first item on your reading list, as it will help you understand how the food industries have arrived at where they are today. Remember how we used to think fat was bad for us, and then it turned out that was kinda all wrong? Read this book, and you’ll understand what sparked the change — and get some guidance on how to eat a real, whole foods-based diet.


2. The Whole30 Cookbook by Melissa Hartwig ($18): Speaking of a real, whole foods-based diet, the Whole30 is one of the cleanest types of eating styles out there. Published in December 2016, this cookbook will become your go-to resource for easy-to-digest recipes that your body will thank you for.

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3. Mediterranean Diet: Say Hello to Healthy Eating and Goodbye to Aging by Emily Parker ($13): The Mediterranean diet has been scientifically proven to slow the body’s natural aging process, probably because of its abundance of fresh vegetables and healthy Omega-3s. But guess what? You’ll notice that lots of different “diets” that focus on healthy veggies and natural proteins are pretty similar. This book on the Mediterranean diet will help you eat one of the healthiest diets known to man.


4. The Omnivore’s Dilemma by Michael Pollan ($13): Another must-read by Michael Pollan, The Omnivore’s Dilemma explores how and why humans eat what we currently do. Keeping the obesity epidemic, animal welfare and food traditions in mind, Pollan examines what it means to eat conventional, organic and DIY (and by DIY, we mean *literally* foraging for mushrooms and hunting your own meat).

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5. The Paleo Cure by Chris Kresser ($12): So, what’s the big deal about Paleo anyway? Chris Kresser answers just that in his book The Paleo Cure. Originally titled Your Personal Paleo Code, the book delves into how eliminating processed foods and sticking with directly-from-the-ground choices can cure all manner of health issues.


6. Juicing for Beginners by Rockridge Press ($8): When it comes to eating healthy, it’s not just what you eliminate from your diet that matters. What you put in is equally beneficial. Juicing is a FANTASTIC way to get tons of fruits and vegetables into your diet, and this super helpful book is packed with recipes even beginners can master.


7. Food, Health, and Happiness: 115 On-Point Recipes for Great Meals and a Better Life by Oprah Winfrey ($21): Released just last month, Oprah’s new book contains 115 healthy, balanced recipes that any healthy eating newbie should try out. And hey, if Oprah loves them, they’ve *gotta* be good.


8. The Complete Gut Health Cookbook by Pete Evans ($16): If you’ve heard a lot of people talking about “gut health” and never really understood why, now’s the time to get clued in. The gastrointestinal tract is a delicate and diverse ecosystem, and it’s now thought that it can impact pretty much *everything* from skin to mental health.


9. Grain Brain by David Perlmutter ($17): Dr. David Perlmutter’s best-selling book might freak you out a little, but it’s an absolute MUST. New research is pointing at potential links between difficult-to-digest carbohydrates like breads and pastas and brain-related disorders like Alzheimer’s and depression. And, if you’ve ever wondered why non-Celiacs go gluten-free, this book will give you a scientific explanation as to why.


10. The Vegetarian’s Guide to Eating Meat: A Young Woman’s Search for Ethical Food by Marissa Landrigan ($17): Melissa Landrigan’s new book answers the common question: Can it ever be healthy AND ethical to eat meat? After years as a vegetarian, Landrigan decided to investigate everything about the food system, from animal welfare to carbon footprint and human health. Her findings are the basis for her latest book.


11. Inspiralized by Ali Maffucci ($11): When you’re going fresh, giving up pasta can be, well, devastating. But thankfully, there’s a healthy alternative that can let you get your noodle on without all the heavy ingredients: spiralized veggies. This go-to cookbook by blogger Ali Maffucci lets you create all kinds of delicious and healthy veggie dishes with the help of a trusty spiralizer.

As you get started on your clean-eating journey, follow us on Pinterest for fresh ideas and healthy recipes!

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