With the hype about dieting for weight loss and healthy foods for longevity, it is very easily to get tricked into thinking that some dishes won’t mess you up. You are wrong in judging many healthy foods that actually are not! The knowledge about what you are putting down your throat is one of the most powerful tools when it comes to nutrition.
Here is a list of 10 “healthy” foods that could be doing more harm than good:
1. Fat-Free Yoghurt
Many people are lured into thinking that foods labeled “fat-free” are healthy, whereas they are not. Unlike sugar, fat doesn’t make you fat. Majority of flavored yoghurt packs are loaded sweetened with sugar which is high in calories. Also don’t go fruit-flavored yoghurts because they are no better. Instead, pick Greek yoghurt with fresh cut fruit or honey.
2. Wheat Bread
Wheat is a great source of carbohydrate, and such bread isn’t any better than a white one. All breads are made from enriched floor, which increases your blood glucose levels without significant nutritional benefits. Rather than picking wheat bread, go for fiber-rich and whole wheat options. If you must have it at breakfast, other better alternatives include sprouted or multigrain breads.
3. Dried Fruit
Although dried fruits are high in fiber content, majority contain preservative and added sugars to extend their expiry dates. Dried fruits also contain higher amounts of calories than when in fresh form. Take a banana chips as an example; they are richer in fat and contain up to 3 times as many calories than you would get from a ripe banana. When choosing fruits, it is recommendable to go for fresh options or just pick one from your fruit garden. All the nutrients are intact and fiber content has not been altered!
4. Fat-free Peanut Butter
Who said that the monounsaturated fats from peanut butter are unhealthy? Eliminate these good fats from peanut butter and you will be left with nothing healthy, other than added sugar and plenty of calories. In simpler words, if you spot reduced fat in any product, it is a signal that the fat has been substituted with sugar or salt. Simply stick with peanuts in their natural form and don’t overindulge. This will ensure that you are getting all their essential nutrients.
5. Protein Bars
Majority of protein bars are made from processed food bricks combined with artificial ingredients and fillers. If you like snack bars, selecting such will only give an equivalent of calories found in candy bars and a protein touch. Don’t get lured into grabbing them, but instead try alternative high protein foods sources like legumes, or fresh fruit and vegetable snacks.
6. Fruit Cocktail
Most people tend to think that anything that comes from fruits is good for your health. While there may be an idea, but the mode of processing and preserving fruits counts significantly. Grabbing a cup of fruit cocktail can give you about 100 calories, but the sugar content could be enough for a single day. You can get nothing any better from fruit cocktail unless you prepare one with fresh fruits! It is even convenient to carry a fruit cocktail from your home in a plastic bag if not cup.
Although pretzels are low in fat, they are high in sodium and are nutritionally unbeneficial. In addition, they are prepared using white processed flour that is enriched with sugar. Irrespective of the amount you consume, you will still find yourself craving for more. It is always important to check on the label for calorie and sugar or salt content before you brag about munching on the healthiest snack. Opt out of pretzels and switch to kale chips for more proteins, vitamins and minerals. The high fiber content in kale chips will keep you full for longer without loading your body with many calories.
8. Sushi Rolls
One may wonder why sushi rolls are not healthy and yet they are made from seaweed, rice and fish. Most of westernized sushi rolls are loaded with many calories. While regular rolls of tuna or salmon can be a great treat, spicy mayo and cream cheese added in sushi rolls makes them unhealthy. Instead of sushi rolls, think of sashimi served with ginger and radish. Say no to spicy and crunchy versions because they are enriched with high calorie recipes.
9. Organic Snacks
Nowadays, food manufacturing companies are putting ‘organic’ label in their products to lure consumers into thinking that they are in deed healthy, whereas they aren’t. A spade is still a spade irrespective of how it was made. Substitute organic snacks for healthier fruit versions like apple slices or unsalted pistachios.
10. Granola Bars
While granola bars are better taken than skipping a meal, it’s worth noting that they are rich in sugar, saturated fats and sodium. This means they are not a healthier choice for taking at breakfast or during the lunch break. If you are too mindful about your weight and healthy foods, try a variety of fruits and vegetable salads instead of skipping regular meals with the hope of achieving your goals fast.
Eating a well balanced diet is very vital for the health of your body, mind and soul. Unfortunately, there are plenty of foods claiming to be healthy but they are not. While skipping meals is not advisable at all, some foods, like those listed above, are worth avoiding if there are better healthier alternatives – like fruits in their freshest forms. Have a great mealtime!
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