4 Foods That You Should Avoid
Everyone seems to be talking about what to eat, how much to eat, and when to eat it. We see commercials daily about diet supplements and diet programs. Nutrition doesn’t need to be a complex science. Keep simple things simple by eating real food and avoiding heavily processed food products.
- Margarine: This butter substitute was created in France to support the troops who were fighting with Napoleon Bonaparte. They needed something that was high in caloric content and would keep over long periods of time. A scientist was up to the challenge, and he developed a method that worked by combining beef fat and skim milk together. That’s not what we know margarine to be today. From the Great Depression of the 1930’s, there was a shortage of animal fat. They started using man-made oils with hydrogenated oils, which are high in trans-fats. As of the 1990s, we now know that trans-fats are linked to cardiovascular disease and other health issues.
- Diet Soda: To make the sodas “diet,” the makers removed sugar. To make the product sweet again, they’ve added in a new artificial sweetener named Aspartame. You can find this chemical in NutraSweet and Equal. When your body consumes aspartame, part of it is converted into Methanol. This byproduct can be detrimental to your health in large amounts. According to the American Cancer Society, aspartame is 200xs sweeter than regular sugar. The debate on health effects is still being reviewed.
- Sweet Yogurts: There are tons of yogurt brands filling the grocery store shelves. If your yogurt is like a sweet treat, then you might be eating High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS). This compound has made a big splash in the diet community. It’s well documented the health effects on weight gain, cardiovascular problems, and increases your risk of diabetes. Yogurt is touted as a healthy alternative, but you need to read the labels. The best option is to buy the plain yogurt and add your own flavorings with cinnamon, fruit, and honey.
- Spray Cooking Oils: There are a slew of extra chemicals added to spray cooking oils to make them palatable and functional. There are things like diacetyl, which is linked to lung cancer, GMOs used as the oils, and butane or propane to propel the oil out. The jury is still out on the safety of these products used in food products. As of right now, they are still permitted by the FDA. The GMO debate has been ongoing; people are wary of man-made produce that has been altered by science. Even if we don’t see an immediate health change, there could be underlying effects that come out years down the road.
If you aren’t sure what you are consuming, read the ingredients on the label. Do a quick google search, and discover for yourself what you are putting in your body. Food is more than a pleasure source; it’s the fuel that our body uses to replicate cells, feed our brain and other vital organs, and give us energy. Make sure that you are putting in good fuel to keep you feeling your best.