‘Healthy Foods … That Aren’t’

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Unhealthy foods are the main reason the world is in the midst of an obesity crisis. Surprisingly, thanks to the advertising industry, some of these foods are considered healthy by many people, but these marketing claims often fall short after the ingredients have been checked. Below are 10 of the main culprits, and one or two may surprise you.

1. Prepared Salads: Do not assume that everything with the word ‘salad’ in is good for you. Prepared tuna salads, for instance, are often laden with hidden fats and calories due to their excessive mayonnaise content. An overfilled tuna sandwich can contain up to 700 calories and 40 grams of fat.

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2. Bottled Salad Dressings: Check out the ingredient list on the majority of bottled dressings and you’ll frequently discover three to eight lines of extras, such as added sugars, colouring agents, flavour enhancers, thickeners, and additives.

3. Instant Oatmeal: Oatmeal can be a wonderful source of energy. On the other hand, it can be a sugary bowl of refined carbohydrates that is low in fibre and protein, but high in added sugar. So stay away from the instant varieties

4. Reduced-Fat Peanut Butter: Both regular and reduced-fat peanut butter contain roughly the same number of calories, but the reduced-fat variety has more sugar. What’s more, regular peanut butter is a natural source of the ‘good’ monounsaturated fats. Don’t be fooled by the ad men

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5. Light Yogurt: Cutting down on the excessive sugar found in flavoured yogurt sounds a good idea. The problem is that the sugar is replaced by artificial sweeteners, some of which have been strongly linked to strokes and depression

6. Smoothies: Many commercially available smoothies are packed with processed sugar, sweetened fruit juice, and high calorie dairy products. You end up consuming 400-600 calories. Make your own and really enjoy the benefits!

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7. Sports Drinks: Sports drinks marketed as sugar-free contain artificial sweeteners (see above). Furthermore, the Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health has reported that these artificial sweeteners can drastically reduce the population of friendly bacteria in the intestine.

8. Hazelnut Spread: Just two tablespoons of hazelnut spread is overloaded with 200 calories. For the most part, these calories come from sugar and fat. In addition, it contains palm oil, which according to WHO may well increase the possibility of getting cardiovascular disease.

9. Packaged Nuts: Nuts are a terrific source of proteins and fats, but not the salted variety available in pre-packaging. These are far too high in sodium.

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10. Energy Bars: Many energy bars are filled with high fructose corn syrup, added sugar, and artery-clogging saturated fat. Not the perfect snack before going to the gym!

  • By Bilal Al Halabi, Al Halabi Ref. & Kitchen Equipment www.al-halabi.com

 



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