As soon as we hear the word “healthy”, we tend to go mental.
“Smoothies are healthy? Give me 3”.
Even extremely healthy food can be quite bad for you if it isn’t eaten in moderation. But how about the foods that are not actually that healthy but only advertised as such. So here is the list of 5 “healthy” foods that are not actually that good neither for you nor for your waistline.
1)Beware of the low-fat / fat – free foods
Those guys straight away sounded like they were just too good to be true! When food loses its fat, it loses almost all of its taste. So a creamy, yummy yogurt becomes almost a white water. In order for people to actually buy it, companies are forced to add extra sugars. That’s why, for example, a majority of low-fat and fat-free yogurts are pumped up with sugars to the extent that you could have easily had a donut instead.
Sarah Walford, a Bachelor of Medical Science, told Nutritionist Resources:
“When we eat something with sugar in it, or something that our body quickly converts to sugar, like refined carbohydrates, we produce a hormone called insulin that takes the sugar out of our bloodstream and into our cells.
But once the ‘sugar stores’ in our cells (particularly in our liver) are full, the excess sugar gets converted to fatty acids which are then stored in our cells as fats. So even though sugar doesn’t contain any fat, our body can turn it into fat.
As sugar is lower in calories than fat, and cheap, it has found its way into all sorts of foods that wouldn’t traditionally contain sugar.”
So low-fat and free products in theory sound like a dream-come-true but in fact, make you gain fat.
Tip: go for low sugar, rather than low-fat options.
2) Dried fruits
I am sorry to upset you but those marvellous cranberries that we LOVE to snack on are FULL of sugar (read point 1 to find out why added sugar is bad for you).
Kristin Kirkpatrick, an award-winning dietitian, told Cosmopolitan that only “raisins, apricots, prunes, dates, and figs … don’t have sugar added to them during the drying process”.
Tip: say “yay” to fresh fruits and small portions of dried raisins, apricots, prunes, dates and figs.
3) Fruit juice
This one is a mood killer for those of you (including me) who start their day with a glass of orange juice. 100% freshly made fruit juice does, in fact, have loads of minerals and vitamins in it. But the majority of juices, especially the ones you buy in shops, are not made out of pure fruit juice and have extra sugars added to them. Don’t forget that even fresh fruits, like oranges, already naturally have loads of sugars in them. Drinking is always much easier than actually chewing which leaves you underestimating how much you’ve actually consumed. Eating two orange would normally satisfy you while only one glass of a freshly made orange juice contains up to four orange, which is loaded with sugar.
Tip: instead of drinking down sugars and calories, eat two – three servings of fresh fruit a day.
4) Deli meats, such as turkey
Highly-processed deli meats can be high in sodium. Salt is also known as sodium chloride and it contains 40 percent sodium and 60 percent chloride. The human body only needs a small amount of sodium to maintain healthy nerve impulses and a balance of water and minerals. But when we consume too much sodium not only you start to retain water and get bloated but it also can cause high blood pressure and even stroke. The recommended dosage is about 2,300 milligrams of sodium (one teaspoon). Just three slices of deli turkey breast could contain up to 1,050 mg, which is almost half of your daily dose.
Tip: eat only half the portion size of the deli meats or pick boiled/ grilled meat instead.
Smoothies have been rocking the dieting world for a while now. Pretty much any shop or café has them in a vast variety. Even though some of them can be in fact very healthy, they are not the ones that we usually consume. The majority of smoothies include loads of sugar in the form of high-calorie bases such as syrups and ice-creams.
Tip: if you do want a proper healthy smoothie, make one at home and don’t go too crazy on fruits (even if they contain a natural sugar- fructose, it’s still a sugar).
Tips to summarise: don’t be fooled by the labels, don’t buy into the advertisement techniques and even if the food is indeed super healthy, watch out for a portion size.