1. Barbecued Meats
The smell of barbecue might be hard to resist, but please try. The chemicals that enter the meat during the process are associated with risk of pancreatic cancer and breast cancer. If you can’t resist, try to limit the intake of barbecued meat and consider adding some rosemary to your hamburger to reduce the amount and number of carcinogens.
2. Potato Chips
All deep fried food contains a dangerous substance called acrylamide. Potato chips are no exception. Acrylamide increases the risk of colon cancer, breast cancer, prostate cancer, and rectum cancer. So avoid the potato chips or make a healthier version at home. Put a little olive oil on sliced potatoes, sprinkle with a pinch of salt, and bake it in your oven.
3. Bottled Salad Dressings
Bottled salad dressings are full of sugar, artificial colors, and high fructose corn syrup. Once you drown your salad in this nutritional disaster, you might as well eat a bag of potato chips or a hot dog instead. Drop the bottled salad dressings, and use lemon juice, apple cider vinegar, or balsamic vinegar along with some olive oil for a healthy salad dressing.
4. Vegetable Oil
Vegetable oil is a part of our cuisine and we don’t even think twice about it. But some of these oils are GMO and we have no idea yet what long-term effects these products can have. Furthermore, vegetable oils contain dangerous trans-fats that can trigger cardiovascular disease, obesity, cancer, and Alzheimer’s disease. Check the label and if the oil is refined, steer clear of it as it contains free radicals that can help cancer growth, speed up aging, and cause all kinds of trouble. Opt for healthy alternatives such as olive oil, coconut oil, or avocado oil.
5. Commercial Fruit Juices
Don’t believe the big flashy labels that say 100% fruit. Most of the time, the secret is in the fine print. Commercial fruit juice often contains added sugar, coloring, preservatives, and it can lose its nutrients during pasteurization. Your best bet is making your own fruit juice at home.
6. Breakfast Cereals
Breakfast cereals aren’t harmless as their happy cheerful colors and toys inside the box might suggest. They actually contain sugar, artificial coloring, preservatives, GMO products, and they’re often stripped of the nutrients they had before processing. Try oatmeal with some fresh or dried fruit instead. It tastes great, and it’s actually good for you.
Wheat contains a carbohydrate that suddenly and greatly increases your blood sugar levels. This triggers high insulin production and weight gain. Over time, your pancreas will become overworked and you’ll become insulin resistant, and then you can get diabetes. And high blood sugar levels trigger the production of compounds that speed up the aging process and give you wrinkled skin. So you’ll age faster and be prone to diabetes, which in itself is a big issue.
Sorry to break this to you, and again, many will disagree, but alcohol has no health benefits. It’s extremely high in calories, can cause dehydration, liver damage, weight gain, depression, and skin problems. Not to mention the bad decisions you make when under the influence. So, if you want to damage all your systems, from the brain to liver to skin, believe the marketing and drink alcohol daily. Otherwise, avoid it.
Marketing is to blame for the BIG misconceptions about margarine. It’s not healthy, people! It’s one of the unhealthiest foods in your diet. So cut it out! Margarine is like a very lousy version of butter that’s made with hydrogenated vegetable oils and it’s more unnatural than you think. It’s pure chemistry. So what’s so bad about it? It’s the trans fats that can damage your heart, blood vessels, and mess up your cholesterol levels. Switch to butter for a healthier alternative. Other healthy alternatives are olive oil and avocado oil that you can spread on your bread. Just please avoid margarine!
10. Hot Dogs
Hot dogs and similar smoked and salted meat contain lots of preservatives that are bad for your health. But the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine compared the effects of eating hot dogs to the effects of smoking cigarettes. If you’re not convinced yet, you should know that hot dogs are high in sodium and toxins that increase your risk of cancer. If you can’t resist, at least make sure you get your dogs chemical-free from organic butchers or directly from farmers.
11. White Bread
Grains are good, right? So bread must be good too? Well, not if it’s white bread made from refined flours. White flour is stripped of all the nutritional fiber, minerals, and vitamins, and all you get is grain waste mixed with chemicals to achieve the nice white color. But behind it lies the risk of weight gain, thyroid damage, and organ damage. Go whole grain instead!
12. Fast Food
Sure, fast food tastes good, it’s fairly inexpensive, and it’s everywhere. But what makes it taste so good? It’s the same things that are slowly killing you: trans-fats, sugar, salt, preservatives, additives, dyes, and other chemicals that enhance the looks and the taste of this food. Fast food can affect your risk of diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer, mood disorders, weight gain, metabolic disorders, etc. So at least try to cut down on fast food.
If you have a sweet tooth, there are much healthier ways to satisfy your cravings. Sugar is highly addictive, and other than spiking your glucose levels and creating fat, it can lead to heart disease. Avoid sugar as much as you can to decrease the risk of diabetes, cancer, obesity, heart disease, and much more. Enjoy a bowl of fruit or add honey to your recipes instead of sugar.
Yes, milk is the first food we eat when we’re brought into this world. But a mother’s milk is much different than a cow’s mother’s milk. In addition, as we age, we develop lactose intolerance. Dairy products are linked with low nutrient absorption, migraines, arthritis, cancer, allergies, and asthma. So again, forget about those clever marketing tricks. Switch to coconut milk or almond milk, it tastes great and it won’t slowly kill you like cow milk.
Salt plays a big role in regulating our blood pressure. If you eat too much salt, you’ll have high blood pressure and increased risk of cardiovascular disease, which is among the leading causes of death in the world. So, don’t cut out all salt as your body still needs it, just limit the amount and watch out for sodium levels in processed foods. Just 3.75 grams of sodium per day is a sufficient and safe amount. Anything above 6 grams poses a serious health risk.
Carbonated drinks or sodas are one of your worst enemies. They can mess up everything, from your skin, blood sugar levels, to your hormones and mood. Forget the marketing and the labels that say it’s good for you or it contains nutrients or vitamins. All it has is a bunch of sugar, food dyes and preservatives. And sugar-free versions are no better as they’re packed with harmful artificial sweeteners. Buy a blender or a juice maker and make your own juice, please. And if you miss the bubbles, you can always add your homemade fruit juice to some sparkly water, and voila!
17. Canned Tomato Sauce
Canned tomato sauce is a killer in disguise. It’s a hidden source of sugar and it would never even cross your mind that it could lead to increased risk of obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and even tooth decay. To avoid these issues, use fresh tomatoes to make the sauce yourself, or switch to pureed tomatoes without the extra sugar or salt and add your own spices. Or at least go for brands with less sugar and sodium.
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