It seems as though every other week there is a new health food trend that we are told we should try out. But apparently, a lot of these trends are actually not that good for us at all. As it turns out, many so-called health foods really aren't that beneficial or nutritious, and some can actually do some serious damage! Get ready to debunk some popular health food myths, next!
A Slice Of Processed Cheese Does Not Have A Similar Dairy Content To Milk
Processed cheese, also known as American cheese is usually shaped into a perfect square and has a similar consistency to rubber. It looks like cheese, but when compared to a traditional cheese like cheddar, parmesan, or brie it is entirely different. Processed cheese is exactly that, processed. The 'cheese' has a lot of added chemicals like emulsifiers, oils, and milk protein concentrate. There are no traditional cheese-making techniques used.
This means the resulting product is something that lacks the nutrition of normal cheese, and it does not contain the same contents as a glass of milk, even if that is what advertisements say.
Too Much Protein Can Have Negative Health Effects Rather Than Good Ones
Eating healthily always involves a well-balanced diet that incorporates various protein sources. People who are trying to build muscle will often eat high protein diets as this is what muscles crave. There have been widely shared ideas around protein consumption, and how too much of it can lead to an increase in calcium excretion which can actually make bones more brittle with age. Once more, this theory has been disproved.
Increased protein is a good thing and directly contributes to overall bone health over time. More protein means better bone density, which means healthier bones as you age.
Not All Fruit Is Great For Those Trying To Be Calorie Conscious
There is a common misconception that fruit is a great source of natural sugar for those looking to eat healthier. While fruit is definitely a source of naturally occurring sugar, it can also be extremely calorie dense which means that they don't contribute to weight loss when eaten in large quantities. Avocadoes, mangoes, and bananas are all quite calorie-dense, which means that if someone is trying to eat in a calorie deficit these may not be the best choice.
Fruit like berries, which also contain antioxidants tends to be a better choice for those who are trying to watch their caloric intake.
The Great Debate Featuring Margarine Versus Butter For Who Is Healthier
Calories and caloric intake are always a hot topic when it comes to discussing diet foods. One food that always comes up in this debate is margarine. Margarine has significantly fewer calories than its cousin butter, but it also contains a variety of chemicals that naturally churned butter does not. While margarine is low in calories, it is often made with hydrogenated oils and other chemicals that give it that creamy spreadability.
These oils are not the good kind and are best avoided. If you want to enjoy a smear of something on your toast, have a dab of butter rather than margarine. It has good fats, and not the trans fat found in margarine.
Is Brown Sugar Better Than White Sugar In The Battle Of The Sugars?
Sugar is one of those items that is simply delicious. It can make a cup of coffee go from okay to amazing, and it can be used to make strawberries sweeter, along with some very delicious desserts. There has been a debate raging for a while now around whether or not brown sugar is more nutritious than white sugar. It turns out that sugar in general is just not great for anyone.
Brown sugar and white sugar are essentially the same, even if brown sugar is slightly less processed than white sugar. Sugar should always be used in moderation and replaced with healthier alternatives.
Making A Home Cooked Meal Takes Up Valuable Time and Is Not Always the Best Option
Slow cooking, or making food from scratch has always been an important part of most peoples' lives. While it is easy to pop frozen store-bought meal in the microwave and press 'Start' it is not always the most nutritious, nor is it actually that time-consuming to cook from scratch. All it takes is a bit of planning, and a delicious homecooked meal can be whipped up in 10 to 20 minutes.
The key here is to try meal prepping. Make a spice mix, soup base, or chop up veggies and meats so that they are easy to pull out of the fridge and fry up.
Raw Veggies Are Not Always The Most Nutritious Choice
Some people adhere to a raw diet, as there is a belief that cooking vegetables at high temperatures actually removes some of their nutritious value. This is certainly true for some veggies, as cooking them ends up removing vitamins like Vitamin C. Some veggies do need to be cooked through in order for our bodies to better break them down, and enjoy all of the health benefits hidden inside of them.
Carrots are one of these veggies. They contain beta-carotene which is very good for improving eye health, but if they are not cooked, it is harder for our bodies to absorb and access that pigment.
Not All Carbohydrates Lead To Weight Gain And Should Be Avoided
The wonderful world of carbohydrates is not something that anyone should avoid. Bread, rice, and pasta all contain carbs, but so do lots of root vegetables and many other foods. Our bodies need carbs to function, and that being said, there are healthier carbs than others out there. A bag of potato chips is delicious, but it is not the kind of healthy carb that should be consumed on a regular basis.
Health carbs found in potatoes, yams, whole wheat bread, and even gluten-free pasta make for great additions to anyone's diet. Completely cutting out carbs doesn't lead to sustainable weight loss.
The Healthiest Menu Item Is Not Always Found In The Salad Section
There has always been this myth that salads are healthy, but when you break down the ingredients in a salad, and the dressing that is put on top this tends to be false. If a salad is composed of vegetables, croutons, parmesan cheese, and a thick Caesar dressing, then chances are that salad has just as many calories as a bowl of mac and cheese. Anything creamy tends to be calorically dense.
Healthy salads are those that don't have a lot of oils and are composed of easy-to-digest veggies, a light dressing, and some lean protein like chicken breast.
Eggs Are Not All Full Of Bad Cholesterol
Eggs are one of those foods that often show up on the breakfast table in various forms. Each part of an egg, from the yolk to the white contains a ton of nutrients that our bodies need. For many years, eggs were often associated with cholesterol as the yolk contains a lot of it. Over the years though, this natural cholesterol has proven to be very nutritious, and eggs are really a multivitamin.
When it comes to adding eggs to a diet, they are always a good choice as they provide way more vitamins in the morning than a slice of toast with butter and jam.
Calories Are Not All The Same
A calorie is a calorie, right? This is not true at all. Calories and the source they come from is very important because certain foods can stimulate appetites, while others can create a feeling of fullness. For example, protein, which is found in meat, fish, eggs, and a variety of other foods is excellent for those who want to feel full after they have eaten. Increasing protein intake is also good for those looking to lean down.
On the other hand, foods that contain fructose actually increase hunger and do not create that feeling of fullness which can lead to eating more of the food.
Saturated Fat Is A No Go And Should Not Be Eaten - Not Necessarily
Our bodies need fats, and that includes saturated fats contrary to popular belief. For many years, nutritionists have said that saturated fats may contribute to an increased risk of heart disease. While saturated fats do contain two types of cholesterol, namely high-density lipoprotein or 'good' cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein which is known as 'bad' cholesterol. However, in the battle of good and bad cholesterol, saturated fats actually have more of the good stuff.
That's right, saturated fats have more good cholesterol which means, like anything else, it is fine to enjoy foods like cake, bacon, and butter once in a while.
Whole Wheat Bread Is Not Necessarily Healthier Than Processed Wheat Used For White Bread
Whole wheat bread has long been touted as the 'healthy' bread when compared to white bread which uses processed white flour. Bread in general is a carb-heavy food that should be enjoyed in moderation, but it is a little thing inside of the wheat itself which may be causing some people digestive issues. Gluten is a wheat protein that is found in bread made from wheat flour and is something that many people are sensitive to.
Anyone who experiences bloating, fatigue, or digestive issues might have a gluten sensitivity or intolerance that needs to be checked out. One way to find out if gluten is causing these issues is to cut bread out of your diet for a few weeks and see if the symptoms clear up.
Does Coffee Go Along With Eating Healthy?
Coffee is a pretty magical substance. It gives many people the juice they need to get their day started, and it has the added bonus of smelling pretty delicious as it brews. While coffee does contain a fair amount of caffeine, it is also full of antioxidants which are fantastic for your body. Coffee is by no means bad for you, and it even has some pretty great hidden health features.
The caffeine that jump-starts your body for the day also jump-starts your brain, and it can give you the energy you need for a good workout and potentially help to increase metabolism.
Lots Of Red Meat Will Not Make Your Body Unhappy
Is there anything that smells better than a big juicy steak sizzling away on the grill? For vegetarians and vegans, this likely isn't the top smell, but red meat itself is good for those who enjoy it. Over the years, some health experts have put forth theories that red meat is bad for people, but this is simply not true. Too much of anything is bad, but unprocessed red meat itself is okay.
As soon as any meat product is processed, such as the meat used for hot dogs and hamburgers, there are additives added which are not great for healthy diets. Red meat on its own is okay though.
Low-Fat, High-Carb Diets Aren't The Best Ones To Follow Longterm
Every month a new fad diet is announced, but one that has stuck for decades is the low-fat high-carb diet touted by nutritionists as the perfect way to lose weight. This diet is problematic because there is no discussion regarding protein. Eating a loaf of bread, which would be considered high-carb is not going to help with weight loss, nor is it going to deliver the nutrients needed for a healthy body.
Anything that is considered 'low' something should be researched. Healthy eating is all about moderation, and that includes the occasional high-fat treat.
Parmesan Cheese Actually Contains Animal Byproducts
Parmesan cheese makes pasta and lasagnas taste even more delicious than they already are. A sprinkle of grated parmesan is what every good Italian dish needs, but parmesan is not actually a vegetarian cheese. The process by which parmesan is made includes a very specific artificial enzyme that is located inside the stomachs of calves. The fact that this enzyme comes from an animal means that there are animal byproducts in the cheese.
This is really just a technicality though. There is no meat involved in the processing of the cheese, so it really just depends on how strict certain vegetarians are when it comes to eating parmesan.
Vegetable Oils That Have Gone Through A Refining Process Are Not The Best
Vegetable and seed oils like canola, soybean, and sunflower are often mentioned as being the 'health' oils. In reality, they have gone through a refining process, which can make them less healthy when compared to natural oils like coconut and olive oil. These refined oils in particular contain something called Omega-6 fatty acids which are known for causing a bit of inflammation in peoples' bodies. Omega-6 fatty acids have been known to contribute to heart disease.
Heart disease is something to be avoided at all costs, which is why oils with high Omega-6 fatty acid content should be avoided.
Low-Carb Diets Don't Help People Get Healthier At All
With so many diets on the internet, it can be hard to know which one to follow. For people who have access to dietitians and nutritionists, personalized ones are usually the best option. One diet, that continues to make the news is the low-carb diet. This diet is primarily based on protein and certain veggies and fruits which are not rich in carbs. The main idea is that carbs contribute to weight gain.
It is not good to cut out carbs completely, but low-carb diets have been shown to aid in weight loss. This is also because people who follow them tend to eat more protein-rich foods, rather than fatty ones.
Not All People Need to Cut Down on Their Sodium Intake
Sodium is a chemical element, which often combines with chlorine to form table salt. Salt is added to a lot of different foods to make them extra tasty, but sometimes too much salt can be made, or so we have been told. Reducing sodium intake is good for people who have high blood pressure, as it can help to reduce it, but for people that don't have any pre-existing health conditions, they don't need to watch their sodium intake.
Sodium is still a necessary part of anyone's daily food consumption, and watching how much salt is in everything really isn't necessary unless medically recommended.
Not All Sugar Is Bad
Sugar in itself isn't necessarily bad, especially if it occurs naturally in fruits and vegetables. White and brown sugars are where the problems start arising. Fructose, which is found in refined sugars can elevate blood levels, lead to weight gain, and affect metabolism very quickly. It can also make a person feel hungry, even after they have just eaten a big piece of cake. Basically, sugar is a whole lot more than empty calories.
It is fine to indulge in something sweet once in a while, but dumping sugar into coffee every day, or eating snacks with a high sugar content may lead to health issues later on.
Diets High In Fat Won't Necessarily Contribute To An Increase In Fat
Fatty diets create more fat deposits right? This sounds like it should be correct, but that is not strictly true. There are good fats and bad fats, and our bodies need some fat as well as carbs and protein. Foods like ice cream which are calorie-dense and high in sugar can lead to an increase in fat, but certain diets which are high in good fats can lead to weight loss.
It is all about figuring out what the good fat is, and avoiding the fatty foods like cheeseburgers, which don't provide all of the nutrients needed for a healthy meal.
Energy Bars Aren't Really A Great Source Of Nutrition For Busy People
Every grocery store has a wall of energy bars for customers to peruse. Some are high in protein, some are keto, some are gluten-free and the list goes on. However, if you look at the ingredients of these bars, and compare the sugar content to a candy bar, it is almost identical. Energy bars are only healthy if they are made without any processed sugars and foods which can be hard to find.
For the health-conscious, only grab an energy bar that you have thoroughly researched as a surge in sugar is not the kind of energy you need.
Boxed Juice Doesn't Really Contain Nice Fresh Fruit Juices
Boxed juice seems like a great alternative to the pricey freshly made juices that grocery stores tend to offer. However, boxed juice tends to not be made from real fruit, or if the box says there is real fruit, then it is made from a concentrate mixed with a whole lot of chemicals. Food science is pretty remarkable and a combination of artificial sweeteners and additives can make 'juice' taste fresh.
This is rarely true though, and your taste buds are being tantalized by chemicals rather than the natural Vitamin C found in oranges for example.
Frozen Yogurt Is Not Way Healthier Than Full Cream Ice Cream
Companies are always trying to entice new customers to buy their products, and for frozen yogurt, one of the key marketing ploys is to say that it is healthier than ice cream. This isn't necessarily true though. Many flavored frozen yogurts include a ton of artificial sweeteners which aren't healthy, and full cream ice cream is at least made with slightly more natural ingredients. If you do want to eat frozen yogurt, then try for the natural stuff.
Frozen yogurt with no added sugars and fresh fruit is fairly healthy as the sugars are coming from the fruit.
Banana Chips Aren't Necessarily The Healthy Alternative To Processed Potato Chips
Potato chips are undeniably delicious, and they come in a wide variety of mouthwatering flavors from ketchup to sour cream and onion. For a long time, nutrition-focused people purported that banana chips were the healthy alternative to potato chips, but this is yet another myth. Banana chips are made with a lot of adulterated oil, as well as sugar and salt to create that crisp sweet flavor which is not healthy.
All of those adulterated fats, and high sugar and sodium content are also found in some potato chips. If you crave some chips, just have a small bowl of the real thing.
Canned Soups Are Not Just As Nutritious As Homemade Soups
Canned soup is great for a cold day when you don't want to cook, but the nutritious value of them is simply not the same as a homemade variety. With homemade soups, you know exactly what the ingredients are, how much salt was included, and there are no hidden additives. Canned soups on the other hand are made to last for a long time, which means there are additives to preserve the soup, as well as artificial colors and even sweeteners.
If you have the time, it is always better to prepare a quick soup from scratch rather than turning to something in a can. Your body will thank you for it.
Diet Sodas Without Sugar Aren't Better Than Regular Sodas
First off, diet sodas still contain caffeine for the most part. You will still get that zing of energy if you drink both of them. However, some diet sodas contain an artificial sweetener known as aspartame. The reason it is used is that a small amount is much sweeter than a large amount of sugar. People who are drinking diet soda don't want all of the sugar, but sometimes the real thing is better than the alternative.
Artificial sweeteners are worse for our bodies than real sugar, although sugars of any kind should be eaten or drunk in moderation like anything else. Natural is better!
Fresh Meat Is Probably As Hygienic As Packaged Meat
Meat markets are pretty normal in a lot of parts of the world. You take a look at your shopping list, and then you head to the meat market to get some fresh chicken or beef. Sometimes this meat doesn't come from the best source though and it can be unhealthy, but fresh butcher shops tend to have the best cuts. Packaged meat may look better in the store, but in reality, it is not.
Since the meat has to be packaged and it may not be sold that day, most larger grocery stores with meat sections will sprinkly a preservative on the meat.
Sports Drinks Don't Really Provide All Of The Electrolytes And Hydration Athletes Need
If you watch any sporting event, there is always a large cooler full of a vibrantly colored sports drink. Athletes will sip on these as they play to stay hydrated, and many people enjoy these drinks after working out as well. If the bright blue, yellow, or red color isn't a giveaway that these are unhealthy, then ingredients should. The color of sports drinks is artificial, and they contain a lot of high-fructose corn syrup.
As we know, fructose is a sugar that is found in products containing refined sugars. Not only does it not help with hydration, but it tends to make people feel thirstier and hungrier.
Low-Fat Milk Isn't Really Better for Weight-Watchers Than Full-Fat Milk
Milk comes in all different percentages and some of these are considered better for weight loss than others, such as skim milk. While milk that contains more water might appear healthier, this is once more not the case. To make milk low-fat a number of items are included in it such as protein powder, and fake vitamins. None of these help with weight loss, and can actually create some digestive issues.
Getting enough calcium for bone health is important, but there are many vegan milks that offer the same benefits and fewer preservatives.
Is Malt Vinegar Eaten With Fish And Chips Really Vinegar?
Malt vinegar differs from other vinegars because of its brown color. It is not as dark as balsamic vinegar but is instead its own unique brown color. After a bit of sleuthing though, it has been found that malt vinegar is more often than not switched out with a substitute known as a 'non brewed condiment.' This condiment is much easier to make because it just involves mixing together ethanoic acid, some artificial flavors, and colors.
Naturally, because it isn't the real deal, it is a lot cheaper to produce in large quantities this way, but it does not have the same nutritious benefits.
Two Minute Noodles Don't Exist But Ten Minute Noodles Do
We all want to enjoy a quick meal once in a while, and two-minute instant noodles always sound like one of the easiest meals to make when in a rush. However, if you start to think about just how much time actually goes into making a nice hot bowl of instant noodles, it is a lot more than two minutes. First, you have to bowl water, which takes a couple of minutes.
Then, you have to pour the hard noodles into a bowl, add the spices, cover the noodles, and let them sit for about five minutes before they are ready to eat. That's around ten minutes in total preparation time.
Drinking Alcohol Probably Won't Lead To A Peaceful Long Sleep
Sipping on a glass of wine or a pint of beer is a nice way to end a long day, but having a couple of these will not lead to a nice restful sleep like many people think. While alcohol does make people drowsy initially, it actually makes for a fitful sleep. The alcohol puts people to sleep, but it tends to also wake them up after a few hours, which leads to a feeling of tiredness.
The trick here is to only have one or two drinks, any more than that and a peaceful sleep may not happen. No one wants to feel hungover for work the next morning either!
Store Bought Hummus Is Not A Nice Healthy Snack
Hummus is one of those Middle Eastern foods that can be used as a dip and a condiment. There are many different mass-produced varieties that can be found at your local supermarket, but these are not as healthy as they appear. Store-bought hummus contains tons of sodium, and for some brands, they have more sodium in them than a few bags of potato chips. All of that sodium is not great in large quantities.
To keep enjoying hummus, consider making a batch yourself which is fairly easy with a food processor or blender. Less sodium is always better than more sodium.