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10 Foods you didn’t know were bad for your body

10 Foods you didn’t know were bad for your body

13th June, 2016 Expat Life

We all know that fried foods, takeaways, and cakes aren’t good for our bodies. But, there are some foods out there that seem to have been designed to fool us. Could you be consuming something without realising that it is actually bad for you? It’s more than possible! In this post, we are going to take a look at ten foods that a lot of people do not realise are bad for them.

 

10. Margarine – For many years, we have been told to use margarine instead of butter for a healthy alternative. But, it would seem that we have been misled. Although there is a lot of fat in butter, it is not as bad for us as the chemicals and artificial flavouring are that are found in margarine. This means that margarine is actually loaded with bad transfats.

9. Artificial Sweeteners – Similarly to margarine, we have been told to avoid sugar and use artificial sweeteners when we want to sweeten up our coffee and such like. Many people believe this is the perfect low calorie substitute, but this has been proven to be a myth. There are numerous products found in artificial sweeteners that can cause weight gain, and, in worst-case scenarios, this can lead to an increased risk of having diabetes and even kidney damage.

8. Microwave Popcorn – Popcorn is often seen as a low calorie snack; a good substitute for crisps or chocolate. However, you need to be mindful of the popcorn you choose, as microwave popcorn is bad for your body. It is filled with Perfluorooctanoic Acid, or PFOA, which ensures the oils do not escape from the bag. This chemical has been linked to severe diseases, including thyroid, cholesterol, immune problems, and infertility.

7. Fruit Juice – Fruit juice should only be enjoyed in moderation. A lot of people believe that fruit juice is healthy simply because it has fruit in it. Nevertheless, fruit is not one of the most prominent ingredients. The majority of the drink is artificial flavouring, water, and high fructose corn syrup or sugar.

6. Muesli – Muesli is often marketed to the health-conscious crowd, with many people making the move from their typical sugary cereal to muesli. Unfortunately, the muesli found in your typical supermarket is not as healthy as it seems, as most contain a large amount of added sugar and have a high fat content. Even more worrying is the fact that one serving contains as many as 500 calories. The best thing to do would be to make your own muesli using a small amount of dried fruit and macadamia nuts, as well as sunflower seeds and oats.

5. Packaged Turkey – There is no denying that turkey is one of the healthier meats, and a whole-grain sandwich containing turkey, lettuce, and tomato isn’t a bad choice. Nevertheless, the issue is that there are a lot of brands of turkey that contain far too much sodium, which is why you do need to be mindful when purchasing and look at the nutritional information.

4. Energy Bars – Energy bars are an example of marketing genius. When we see a health bar in a store, we immediately assume it’s full of things that are amazing for our bodies. In fact, most of them are filled with processed chemicals and contain more calories and sugar than a lot of chocolate bars. You need to be very careful when reading the label for one of these bars and be mindful that the majority of them are designed for after-workout snacks so that athletes can refuel.

3. Reduced Fat Peanut Butter – If you’re looking for a healthy snack, peanut butter and celery is a great choice. However, you should opt for regular peanut butter as opposed to the reduced-fat variety. This may sound odd, however, manufacturers use sugar to make up for the lack of fat, and thus it is really not a healthier alternative. Moreover, if you compare the two packages against one and other you will see that there is not a huge difference in terms of calories either.

2. Rice Crackers – A lot of people snack on rice crackers when they are trying to lose weight. But, there are a few things you need to be mindful of. The first is the fact that they are often high in sodium and can lack fibre. Moreover, rice crackers are considered carb dense. What this means is that when compared with their weight, they have a high ratio of carb grams. A typical plain rice cake weighs only nine grams, but 80 per cent of this is carbohydrate. You can compare this with a food that is considered a bad carb, such as a small potato, which weighs almost 19 times as much at 170 grams, but is only made of 23 per cent carbohydrate. Carb dense foods can trigger inflammation and alter the balance of your gut flora.

1. Vegetable Oils – Taking the top spot is vegetable oil. A lot of people use vegetable oil when cooking as it is viewed as it is a healthy way to fry food. However, there have been a lot of changes in the way that vegetable oil is made, and thus you need to choose with care if you are to be sure that you are benefitting from a healthy alternative. The old fashioned pressing method used to make vegetable oil is supposed to be chemical free and organic. But, there have been a lot of changes over time, and some companies used chemicals, such as petroleum solvent and hexane alongside heat to extract more oils. This makes them much more unhealthy. Moreover, they are often altered in terms of smell and re-coloured, which further takes away their natural nutrition.

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Alison Massey

Group Marketing Director

Now Health International

Alison Massey is a 15-year digital marketing veteran, who has spent the last seven years using social media to help expats and soon to be expats find out what to expect from a life overseas. An expat living in Hong Kong herself, Alison is the Group Marketing Director of Now Health, the award-winning international health insurance provider.

Contact Alison Massey

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