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Health Food Myths…..part 1

You may be shocked to realise that many so called ‘healthy’ foods, ‘low-fat’ foods and ‘diet’ foods are often not any better then the original foods that you are trying to avoid in the first place. You are often making all that sacrifice of taste and flavour and spending that extra money for what ultimately can be worse for your health and weight loss.

You need to explore behind the big headlines posted on the label and look carefully to see exactly what ingredients and calories are present as manufacturers have now perfected the art of distracting us from what is actually present and convincing us that what we are getting is the real deal. Here let us have a look at some everyday foods and explore exactly what you are getting……..

Light Mayonnaise

At 45 calories per tablespoon and 90% fat, there is nothing light about light mayonnaise. Worse still most of us will use a lot more than 1 dessertspoon because we think of it as being healthy and low calorie. It will take you about 10 minutes of brisk walking to burn off each dessertspoon you take, so be careful!! Switch to extra light mayonnaise, balsamic vinaigrette or relish, all just 12 calories per tablespoon and make sure to control your portion size too!

Fruit Yogurt

Fat free or low-fat doesn’t necessarily mean healthy! Fruit yogurts have many good qualities especially in providing calcium, magnesium, zinc and potassium but unfortunately they contain very high amounts of sugar with a 112g (4oz) pot having the equivalent of 3 teaspoons (15g) of added sugar. This certainly outweighs most of the benefits. To make matters worse some have controversial artificial sweeteners added too. The best solution is to get the natural yogurt and add your own pieces of fresh fruit!

Chicken Caesar Salad

Many people order chicken Caesar salad when out in restaurants thinking it to be a really healthy option. Don’t be fooled, very often the high fat content and the high sodium content make this a very unhealthy choice! You might be better off with a double hamburger! It depends on the general ingredients and the lettuce-to-chicken ratio and lettuce-to-dressing ratio. 2 cupfuls can range from 250 to a huge 650 calories, 15-35g of fat and a whopping 500-800mg of sodium. To make this healthy pack, on the lettuce and cut down on the parmesan cheese, the croutons and any anchovies in the dressing!

Smoothies

Are essentially a large serving of sugar, albeit fruit and yogurt, but sugar is sugar to the body and the excessive quantity that comes in smoothies (often 400 to 500 calories) ends up in only one place, as fat under the skin! Remember the fruit fibre and the other great nutrients found in the fruit skin are left in the machine! To make it worse smoothies often have sugar, full fat milk or ice cream added. If you must indulge then make your own smoothies in small portion size (150-200 ml), use natural yogurt and half and half fruit and vegetables to lower sugar content.

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Comments: 2

  1. Posted by Cyril Thompson 13 Jun 2012 at 5:26 am

    You learn something new everyday.

    Keep up the good work