Most people might think they are pretty healthy, but statistics point to another reality. The National Center for Health Statistics reports the following staggering facts regarding obesity:
Percent of adults aged 20 and over with obesity: 37.9% (2013-2014)
Percent of adults aged 20 and over overweight, including obesity: 70.7% (2013-2014)
Children and adolescents
Percent of adolescents aged 12-19 years with obesity: 20.6% (2013-2014)
Percent of children aged 6-11 years with obesity: 17.4% (2013-2014)
Percent of children aged 2-5 years with obesity: 9.4% (2013-2014)
Numbers do not lie, the reality is that though most people think they are pretty healthy; in fact most are overweight and a pretty significant portion are obese. Though the specific causes are many, lets look at 1 overlooked one. There is a significant portion of food in the regular diet of Americans that is marketed or perceived to have health benefits, when in reality is quit unhealthy and in many cases as bad as junk food or even outright harmful. Lets look at some of the top culprits.
Fruit Juice: As dangerous as soda. Consider how long it takes to eat an orange? Now imagine eating 4 oranges in a matter of seconds. Your body isn't designed to deal with that level of fructose overload. Remember, fructose gets processed nearly solely by the liver where it is converted to fats. Do you need another reason to switch to water?
Soy Protein: Most soy grown in the US is heavily genetically modified. Recent studies show extremely dangerous levels of glyphosate in U.S. soy. Glyphosate is the active ingredient in weedkiller and glyphosate has been linked to many health problems, far too many to detail here.
''Atlantic' Salmon, Talipia and Other Farmed Fish: They contain decreased levels of healthy Omega-3's. Farmed fish have high levels of dioxin which is an environmental pollutant linked to cancer, organ damage and immune system conditions. Overfishing of smaller feed fish results from the chow that is produced to feed farmed fish. Salmon are migratory predators, they're not evolved to live life in a small pen. While we're on the topic of farmed fish, be sure to also avoid all farmed Shrimp as well.
Microwave Popcorn: Where do we begin? Do we start with the bag lined with a multitude of cancer causing chemicals? Maybe we can begin with the diacetyl, the fake butter flavor that's linked to lung disease. Maybe that's enough of a reason to start popping your own?
Factory Farmed Meats: Take an animal, pump it full of hormones, antibiotics, anti-depressants, arsenic and painkillers. Feed it steroids and genetically engineered food designed to fatten up that animal as quickly as possible. Do all that and call it dinner? No thanks, follow my plan. If I can't verify it's raised in green pastures and fed organic natural food then it's not for me.
Margarine: Years ago we thought margarine was much lower in saturated fats than butter is and thought it would protect heart health better. Sadly trans fats were those originally used in margarine which are responsible for about 50,000 heart attacks a year, increased risks for developing T2 diabetes and other health problems. The best thing to remember is to avoid man-made/processed fats not found in nature.
Vegetable Oils: Those highly processed like Canola oil. Atherosclerosis, birth defects, high cholesterol, obesity, heart disease, cancer, just to name a few conditions awaiting you from overuse of these oils. Consider pure, extra virgin coconut oil (Here's a tip, to test the quality of your coconut oil, you should make sure the product smells like coconut when you buy it. Otherwise there’s a good chance it’s been pasteurized).
Table Salt: Your table isn't salt at all. Lets look at the process, then you decide. Naturally occurring salt is mined, then stripped of all of it's natural beneficial minerals, then super-heated. The iodine which was chemically leeched out is replaced with potentially toxic levels of potassium iodide, stabilized with dextrose (Which turns the mix purple), then it's chemically bleached white. That's your table salt, swap it out for sea salt for an easy fix.
Artificial Sweeteners:In addition to destroying your healthy gut flora and fauna which in itself should be enough? Allergies, weight gain/obesity, cancer/tumors, headaches, hypertension, seizures, lymphomas and leukemia are just a few of the conditions in store for you from repeated use. Consider a healthy alternative like honey, monk fruit or stevia.
Seitan: It's a lump of wheat gluten loaded with dangerously high levels of sodium. Swap that for tempeh instead, this fermented soy has some great probiotic benefits too and the texture of tempeh is generally more appealing. Though we advise steering clear of conventional soy and soy products, fermented soy products like tempeh, natto and miso are excluded as they have health benefits that we will delve into in another article.
Sugary Fru-Fru Coffee Drinks: There are actually many health benefits to drinking coffee but those benefits become null when you add in all that sugar and fat. Consider a 16-oz Pumpkin Spice Latte has a whopping 50 grams of sugar (Mostly in the form of High-Fructose corn syrup) not to mention the gut-killing carrageenan in whipped cream. Swap that for a Green Tea for a healthy drink.
This is by no means a comprehensive list of foods to avoid, but it's a great place to start. Consider taking the time to review the list and incorporate the recommendation into your lifestyle for a huge boost in the quality of your personal nutrition program.
Andrew Schachter is the Director of eCommerce, Affiliate manager, SEO manager & eBay Channel manager at BodyHealth.
Andrew is an avid cyclist, 25 year veteran of eCommerce and is eager to share his knowledge and expertise in the areas of nutrition and biohacking.
Andrew is a graduate of the University of Central Florida (Go Knights!) and has a degree in communication with concentrations in digital media and marketing. Also a certified Life Coach, he brings decades of experience in health, wellness and nutrition to BodyHealth.
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