Hi, everyone! As advocates of physical health, we believe that a big part of achieving this is by having and maintaining a healthy diet. Ideally, this should not just be a way to lose weight but should be a lifestyle as well. In effect, you will have a more positive outlook in life when done together with proper exercise. Previously we talked about the 5 worst ways to lose weight. Now, we will tell you about the 8 worst foods to eat.
In the past years, margarine has been advertised as a better choice than butter. However, margarine contains trans fat. This is the worst kind of fat that you can consume because it raises your LDL (bad cholesterol) levels and lowers your HDL (good cholesterol) levels, according to Harvard Health. Luckily, choosing your spread wisely is easier now because the FDA requires complete disclosure of information about these unhealthy fats on nutrition labels.
Healthier alternatives for margarine are olive oil or other spreads made with vegetable oil. These contain monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats that help lower bad cholesterol levels in the body.
Drinking soda is like drinking liquid sugar because it has so much fructose syrup. It also contains food dyes, preservatives and brominated vegetable oil (BVO). Over time, high amounts of BVO can build up in the body and cause toxic effects, stated by WebMD. BVO is a component in soda that keeps all the ingredients from splitting and keeps plastics flame retardant.
If you are a fan of flavored drinks, a way to quit and give up soda is by having fruit-infused water instead. This adds a sweeter taste to the water if you find it bland, plus it’s packed with vitamins and minerals from the fruits.
Doughnuts are undeniably yummy, but they “contain the unholy trinity of unhealthy ingredients”, as quoted from Reader’s Digest. This consists of trans fat, sugar, and refined flour, making doughnuts high in fats, calories, and carbs. Deep-fried doughnuts are even worse because they can increase weight-gain rapidly.
Equally delicious but healthier alternatives are whole-grain baked doughnuts or cinnamon toast. Mayoclinic explains that these have more fiber, which helps lower cholesterol levels and the risk of heart disease.
- Potato chips
Despite being made from a vegetable, potato chips are unhealthy because they are deep-fried. The oil used to cook these contain saturated fats and trans fats. Also, it’s uncommonly known that these chips contain a carcinogen called acrylamide. It is a chemical that is formed when foods are fried or baked at a high temperature. According to Time, potato chips have the highest concentrations of acrylamide compared to other foods.
Better options are dehydrated fruits or vegetables. These will also have the crunch that the chips have, but will not have the unhealthy fats and carcinogenic acrylamide. If you don’t have a dehydrator, you can bake them at the lowest temperature until they are crisp enough to your preference.
- Processed Meat
Most processed meats are preserved by smoking, curing and salting. These contain a lot of salt and chemical preservatives to prolong its life and avoid spoilage. Sadly, these are linked to a higher risk of colorectal cancer, based on a BBC report.
A better choice than processed meat is roasted chicken breast because it doesn’t contain the chemicals that the meats have, yet contains the protein that your body needs.
The main issue with bagels is the refined flour. This kind of flour is unhealthy because it had gone through many stages of processing that the fiber and nutrients are lost, according to WebMD. In addition, bagels are so dense and compact that its caloric content is equivalent to roughly five slices of white bread.
Instead of eating a bagel, choose a multigrain alternative or whole-grain English muffins. This will offer the right amount of starch you need for one meal. Make it even more delicious with cottage cheese or a nut butter!
- Microwavable popcorn
What makes popcorn a bad food choice is the amount of butter and oil used to cook it. What’s even worse is butter-flavored microwave popcorn because the flavor is artificial. It comes from chemicals and a butter-flavoring called diacetyl. A report from CBSNews states that this chemical has respiratory risks and a link to Alzheimer’s disease.
It is better to munch on trail mix instead of popcorn. You can even customize it to your preferred nuts, fruits, and seeds. My favorite trail mix combination is made of cashews, macadamias, almonds and dried cranberries.
- Sugary cereals
Sugary cereals are awful to eat for breakfast. It is unhealthy because it contains a lot of sugar, refined carbs, and empty calories. It can spike up your insulin levels, then after a few hours, your blood sugar will rapidly decrease that you will crave for another sugary meal, stated by Reader’s Digest.
One alternative to sugary cereals is oatmeal. You can soak it overnight in milk with apples, mango, banana, nuts, chia seeds, and honey to have a hearty breakfast.
There are so many unhealthy foods today, that choosing to eat healthy can feel like an extra task. We have gotten used to the convenience of these bad foods because they are easily available. Carefully screening and consciously knowing what unhealthy foods are can help you make the right food choices. Just remember, that being healthy and fit is a lifestyle. So, if you’d like to make the big change, contact us and send us a message!