The Unhealthy Facts of Supposed Healthy Foods
By Spencer Boone
There are so many falsehoods in today’s world of nutrition, only nutritionists seem to know what is truly a good balance of food intake. Although there are plenty of healthy foods that contain amazing nutrients, let's look at some foods that are considered “healthy,” but research has shown they aren't good for us in either quantity or ingredients. Hopefully, you can portion these foods accordingly or eliminate them entirely so that all the hard work you put in at the gym is not going to waste.
Processed foods, such as cereals, some vegan junk foods, and others are usually not good for consumption. Far too many preservatives and artificial ingredients go into the production of these foods for them to be considered natural for our bodies to digest. When you see low-fat or fat-free foods, remember there will be an ingredient included to ensure the food is still tasty. The ingredient is typically a sugar which, over the course of daily consumption, means we are putting many times the amount of sweeteners into our bodies than we can handle.
One of the first items people turn to when they want to eat healthier is a salad. Salads are fantastic for consuming raw vegetables and fruits. Although the greens may be healthy, the big problem is the salad dressing. These practically essential condiments -- a salad can be pretty boring otherwise -- are often loaded with fat, oils and sugar that, in higher quantities, can be detrimental to your health. An easy fix for this situation -- and for everything you eat -- is to read the ingredients label.
Portion control is vital to diet. Resisting the urge to free pour dressing over your salad can help keep down fat. Most people don't realize how easy it is to make their own salad dressing; many dressing recipes are online to help reduce preservatives and other artificial ingredients you're putting into your body when you want to eat a healthy salad.
Sodas are loaded with high fructose corn syrup, which acts as a sugar substitute (you'd be better off with actual sugar). Even natural fruit juices can be bursting with sugar. At least raw fruit provides a balance of fiber and other vitamins to go along with the natural sugars, but most of those goodies are lost during the manufacturing process.
Sports drinks, such as Gatorade, are marketed to a wide market of consumers. Our favorite athletes are constantly on television drinking these beverages that promise to restore our energy and refill our electrolytes. The issue with these drinks is that most of us are not athletes, constantly depleting our bodies of needed salts, so we are adding an inordinate amount that our kidneys have to process. If you are working out daily, then sport beverages are not so bad, but if you have regular water available, that is always a better idea. Fruit-infused water is great if you must have taste.
Most of these foods will not cause a weight explosion if consumed in small quantities. The best part about them is that they are either not necessary or easily replaced by equally healthy counterparts. Try mixing up your diet decisions so that you continually get the most out of what you consume each day.