10 Healthy Foods That Can Ruin Your Diet | The Portal

10 Healthy Foods That Can Ruin Your Diet

Many foods seem like great choices when you're watching your waistline and trying to build muscle. You've heard about a lot of these and you probably think they are good choices. Many are not and are actually packed with unhealthy fats, preservatives and hidden calories. That's not what you want, especially if you're actually TRYING to do the right thing.

1. Diet Soda - Soda is not good for you, even if it's diet soda. Even diet sodas create additional insulin in your body. That means more sugar. Diet soda also inhibits the hormone leptin which regulates your metabolism and appetite. If your metabolism and appetite are out of whack, you're not going to reach the goal - weight loss and better health. So drink water with your meals and skip the soda.

2. Pretzels - Most of us think that these are better for you than chips. But keep in mind that all pretzels are made with enriched white flour. White flour in all of its forms is a really bad choice and is easily converted to sugar. Trade your chips for pretzels and you're just trading the fat in chips for sugar in pretzels, which ends up as fat on your belly and your butt. A entire bag of pretzels in a sitting is like eating a loaf of white bread! No kidding.

3. Fruit Juices - It's not just for breakfast anymore. But it should be. And you might think twice about it even at breakfast. A glass of orange juice in the morning is NOT a great start to the day. Fruit juices have an unbelievable amount of sugar in them and whether it's fructose or sucrose or glucose, it's pure sugar. Most "juices" are not actually fruit juices. Many only contain 5% natural fruit juice. We recommend that you EAT your fruits rather than drink them. Eat at least two servings of citrus fruit (oranges, grapefruits) a day to get the benefits of the vitamins in fruit.

4. Ready-to-Go Salad Kits - Salads seem great when you're on the go. And what's better than having it all cut up and put together for you, right? Well, beware! Most of the dressings in a "to go" salad kit can add hundreds of calories and more fat than you want in a day. The light varieties are better. Also, please don't think that a salad is a good meal. Every meal needs a certain amount of protein and complex carbs. Just eating green veggies and lettuce is not helping you to lose weight.

5. Reduced-Fat Peanut Butter - Everyone in my office loves peanut butter but it contains a lot of fat, and most of it is not the good kind (read the label). The reduced-fat variety seems like a great idea, right? What is removed to make low fat is replaced with fillers and there is no calorie reduction with fillers. Worse, the fat they DO remove is usually the kind that's good for you. So, just use peanut butter sparingly, unless you're willing to go to the source and buy natural whole peanut butter. It's in every store and readily available.

6. Poultry Hot Dogs - Hot dogs made with turkey or chicken are so much better than the beef or pork dog, right? WRONG! All dogs include skin and fat so you are not receiving much benefit from eating poultry dogs. Try low-fat or fat-free dogs, which may be a better alternative. Better still, try a turkey burger.

7. Cereal Bars - You can find many that are healthy, low-fat and are not loaded with calories, but you really have to look hard at those labels. Believe me, they are trying to fool you with the packaging. Most cereal bars at the grocery store are high in sugar and saturated fat. Make sure to read the labels for low fat, sugar and calorie content before you start your morning with more belly fat. Find a bar that has more protein and less sugar.

8. Frozen Yogurt - "Oh, is that yogurt? I'll take two scoops!" D'oh! Most frozen yogurts have a LOT of added sugar which means you're licking up extra calories from sugar instead of fat. If you look for low-fat frozen yogurt and go sparingly you can treat yourself every now and again, but keep in mind that sugar in snacks like this turns readily to fat. One way to beat the blues on this is to treat yourself once in a while to a treat like ice cream and enjoy the real thing. Then wait a week or two before you treat yourself again.

9. Rice Cakes - Here's another office favorite. Rice cakes are low in fat, if any, so people see them as a great snack and will eat a bunch of these. But rice cakes, like many other fast carbs, can cause blood sugar to spike. Again, this causes your body to store unwanted fat. The spike slows down your body's ability to burn fat and you store that unused energy on your belly and your butt. Not what you had in mind when you received the rice cake. Worse yet, flavored rice cakes are loaded with sodium. Can you say "bloated?"

10. Granola - Ah, granola. So healthy that we actually use it as an adjective to describe people who we think of as holistic and healthy "She's so granola." Keep in mind that granola contains about 350 calories and 12 grams of fat per 3/4 cup. There is so much sugar in it that you fall into the same trap as the other foods listed here. There are low-fat or low-sugar granolas that are not quite as bad to snack on but you're better off grabbing a whole food snack, like nuts.

You may be wondering what you're supposed to eat if all of the little things you thought of as healthy snacks and foods are not what you thought. The answer is simple. Eat whole foods. Sticking with whole foods will keep your blood sugar stable and keep your metabolism on a nice even fat-burning mode. Meat, fish, potatoes, rice, vegetables, nuts, fruit. Stick to the basics and you'll lose the fat faster.


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