12 Food Items That You Absolutely Must Avoid
Labels lie. Not all food products that claim to be ‘healthy’ are necessarily healthy. Infact, some of these foods fall into the category of worst foods to eat. Here is a list of foods you must never put in your body.Buzzwords like ‘healthy’, ‘organic’ and ‘gluten’ are frequently thrown in conversations, now that we are so aware. But how much do we really know about what constitutes ‘healthy’ food? Do you know that some of these ‘healthy’ foods are a complete no-no?
Most of these healthy things are loaded with ingredients which are anything but healthy, and you’re definitely not going to lose any weight if you keep adding them to your grocery list.
Let’s have a look at the foods you must avoid if what these are. you are trying to lose weight and improve your health and fitness quotient. Here is the ultimate ‘unhealthy foods list’ you always wanted.
1. Fruit juice:
Drinking packages packaged juice is not as good as you think it is. Nothing can beat the real thing, that is, the fresh fruit. The fibre of the whole fruit is what you need to improve your gut. Most fruit juices have a high fructose level and our bodies cannot process that, and eventually, this gets converted into fat by the liver. So peel an orange and eat it whole—not blend it and drink it.
According to a study published in The BMJ, it was found that consuming excessive fruit juice increased insulin resistance and diabetes risk, but whole fruit consumption did not have the same ‘health-eroding‘ effect.
2. Microwave popcorn:
We understand the convenience of popping a packet of popcorn in the microwave while you run around the kitchen getting everything else sorted. But the packets which seal the popcorn are coated with chemicals and there is fake butter in the popcorn which is extremely toxic.
According to FDA, chemical coating used in microwave popcorn bags breaks down when heated into a perfluorooctanoic (PFOA), a substance which has been identified as a carcinogen (cancer-causing) substance.
The next time popcorn craving hits you, pour some popcorn kernels into a hot pan with some butter and cover it with a lid. Shake from time-to-time to let the steam escape. Season with herbs, garlic, salt or whatever you want and dig into your home-made popcorn.
3. Factory-farmed meat:
This is a difficult one, but what the livestock eats is essentially what you eat. So if they’re pumped with hormones, antibiotics and other chemicals, then that’s what you’ll ingest too. Opt for organic meat so that you can be sure of the standards being maintained. Or speak to your local meat supplier and get an understanding of where he’s getting his meat/poultry.
Years ago people switched to margarine as a ‘healthier’ alternative to butter. The food product that takes one of the top positions on our ‘unhealthy foods list’ is margarine. It’s one of the foods that you must avoid if you’re trying to lose weight or stay away from heart problems.
Years ago people switched to margarine as a ‘healthier’ alternative to butter. The trans-fat in margarine is responsible for so many diseases—type 2 diabetes and heart conditions to name a few.
Go back to your roots and consume Switch to butter or ghee in moderation..
5. Energy bars:
Energy bars are terrible where health and weight loss are concerned. The processed chemicals in the granola and protein bars are extremely high in processed sugar and calories. If you enjoy chomping on these, just make your own or find someone who can make them for you. They are extremely easy-to-make, and you can ensure what’s going in them.
Also, you could try these granola bars and apricot-cinnamon energy bites from Exotic Healthy Bites. All their products are organic and free of any refined sugar and artificial -sweeteners, both of which are harmful for your health and are foods you must avoid when trying to lose weight.
6. Flavoured oatmeal:
Who would have thought that oats could land into ‘unhealthy foods list’? Well, oats when consumed in their natural form are extremely healthy. Especially when topped with fresh fruits, nuts, and seds. But, Quick breakfasts are made of oatmeal these days. While oats are healthy, especially when topped with things like blueberries and nuts, the flavoured ones that come out of a packet are high in sodium and sugar. Avoid them. Instead, uUse regular rolled oats or steel cut oats and top it with honey, almond milk and some fruit and you’re good to go.
7. Multigrain bread:
The moment you see the words multigrain, don’t assume it’s healthy. Many bread packets are labelled this way but contain refined grains. These lack the fibre of whole grains and can make your blood sugar spike. Remember, whole-grain and multigrain are not interchangeable words. If you see the word ‘refined’ on the list of ingredients, then it’s not a whole grain product, and if it’s not a ‘whole-grain’ product it is not better than the regular white flour products.
You may think you’re eating healthy by having a bowl of couscous for lunch. But actually, it’s just another form of pasta. It’s really a simple carb. Try quinoa instead of couscous if you’re looking for variety and weight loss.
9. Trail mix:
The store-bought trail mix that you think you can snack on when hunger strikes are actually loaded with unhealthy foods such as banana chips, salty peanuts, etc. You can make your own trail mix using nuts, seeds and some dark chocolate. Have got no time for that? Check out these organic varieties.
10. Baked beans:
Beans are definitely healthy. But the baked beans you get out of a can are not. This again is processed food and constitutes a high sugar content and other preservatives. A half cup serving could contain about 500 milligrams of sodium. Make your own baked beans at home and junk the ingredients that can harm your body.
11. Non-organic strawberries:
Those red fruits are actually on the top of the dirty dozen list of food. Strawberries are grown in fields where the pesticides used are those used in chemical warfare. Surely, you wouldn’t want to court such deadly food? If you love strawberries, then make sure they’re organic.
12. Artificial sweeteners:
People usually get on to using artificial sweeteners when they want to lose weight or if they’re diabetic. The truth is that they may be low on the glycemic index, but they really can mess up the gut. Sugar substitutes have actually been linked to a number of conditions such as cancer, hypertension, headaches and weight gain. Go for the good stuff such as jaggery, organic honey, raisins or dates to sweeten your food.
The effects of these unhealthy foods are not seen immediately, but over the time, the consumption of these unhealthy foods could lead to various health problems. While our unhealthy foods list should help you choose your groceries wisely, but if you’re still confused about what to eat and foods to avoid. Follow this simple key rule-- avoid anything that has the word ‘refined’, ‘processed’, and ‘artificial’. It should do the trick!