These are 15 foods that in theory are healthy and healthy, but that you should keep out of your diet if you want it to be healthy and balanced.
Eating healthy can sometimes be a torture in countries where the culmination of food is an ice cream milkshake. To make matters worse, many supposedly healthy foods are not really good at all.
With that in mind, Business Insider has asked Andy Bellati – a prestigious dietician and co-founder of Dietitians for Professional Integrity – what “healthy meals” you should avoid on your next trip to the supermarket.
- Juices: When you squeeze fresh juices from fruits and vegetables, you are eliminating the fiber, the key ingredient that makes you feel full and satisfied until the next meal. What you stay is sugar. In the short term, a diet rich in sugars and low in protein means hunger, mood swings and lack of energy. In the long term, you can lose muscle mass, since muscles require protein.
- Coconut oil: Adding coconut oil to everything will not make it healthier. Coconut oil is similar to olive oil in calories and fats. However, opposite to a spoon of olive oil – which only contains 1 gram of saturated fat of 10 grams of monounsaturated or polyunsaturated – one tablespoon of coconut oil has 12 grams of saturated fat and only 1 of healthy fats. Experts recommend avoiding saturated fats because they are linked to high cholesterol and type 2 diabetes.
- Agave Syrup: There was a time when some health experts (including Dr. Oz) suggested replacing sugar with agave, since it has a low glycemic index and does not cause high blood sugar (glucose) to rise and fall like sugar. However, although the agave is not rich in glucose, it is in another type of sweetener: fructose (the same that comes in corn syrup). Some recent studies suggest that high-fructose diets are linked to health problems such as heart disease. It does not matter much what sweetener you use but in what quantity. “Sugar is sugar and it’s sugar,” says Bellatti.
- Egg white: Many people began to avoid the egg yolk when some experts warned that eating them is bad for your health because it increases cholesterol. But there is good news: more and more studies prove that for most people, the cholesterol that comes from the meals you eat does not have much to do with blood cholesterol. So unless you have cholesterol already high, stop taking egg white without yolk.
- Low-fat products: We have been led to believe that low-fat products improve health and help you lose weight. Despite this, a study conducted over eight years with 50,000 women suggests that it is highly unlikely. Half of them followed a low-fat diet and did not lower their risk of breast cancer, colorectal cancer or heart disease. Also, they did not lose too much weight either, if they lost anything. The new recommendations prove that healthy fats, such as nuts and almonds, fish or avocados, are good if you consume them in moderation. So go back to adding them to your diet.
- Granola: If you’re like me, associated with something crispy and sold in bags with the food section and lovers of nature and climbing, people who exercise a lot and have thin and healthy bodies. But most of the granola is not a healthy food. In fact, it is packaged along with calories and sugar. A single glass contains 600 calories, the same amount as two turkey and cheese sandwiches or four candies.
- Almond Butter: Absolutely everything, from Gwyneth Paltrow’s breakfast shake to the corner grocery store, seems to have almond butter, but it’s incredibly expensive. We asked Bellatti if there is any reason to use almonds instead of peanut butter, about four times cheaper. “It could be just peanut butter!” He says. “If the only ingredients are peanuts and salt, it’s totally correct. You will have your protein, healthy fats and vitamin E. “
- Multivitamin complexes: Almost half of American adults take vitamins every day. Despite this, decades of research have found no justification for this habit. We need small amounts of vitamins to survive, of course. Without vitamins like A, C or E, for example, we would have a hard time transforming food into energy. However, research shows that we get enough of our food, so there’s no need of multivitamin complexes.
- Bread without gluten: Unless you form part of the 1% of the population that is celiac, gluten will not have any negative effect on you. In fact, some studies show that most people have gas when they eat, take gluten or not. So go ahead with him.
The OCU reminds that gluten-free foods are intended for celiacs
- Almond milk: Alternatives to milk have gained popularity in recent years, especially almond milk and soy milk. However, almond milk has practically no nutrients. By themselves, almonds have many proteins. But by volume, a glass of almond milk only has 2% of this nut and practically zero proteins, and all the vitamins are added. So if you are looking for a healthy alternative to milk, opt for soy or skim milk.
- Bottled water: Bottled mineral water is not cleaner or healthier than tap water. Even so, we spend 100,000 million dollars to buy it every year worldwide. Elizabeth Royter writes in “Bottlemania: How Water Wench on Sale and Why We Bought it” that 92% of systems in the United States meet safety standards and are at least as clean as bottled water. (Those who live in areas contaminated with lead, of course, should drink bottled water).
- Food and shakes “detox”: No one needs to detoxify. Unless you have been poisoned, you already have a very efficient system to eliminate most of the harmful substances that you ingest. That means you do not need to buy a tea or “detox” shake. “There’s nothing in these products that detoxifies you, and no food is detox,” Bellatti adds. Your immune system has two organs responsible for eliminating toxins: the liver and kidneys. While our kidneys filter blood and eliminate waste from the diet, the liver processes the drugs and chemicals we ingest. Together, these two organs make our bodies clean themselves.
- Salt of the Himalayas: The distinctive pink dye of Himalayan salt is given by the iron oxide in the grains. This salt also contains small amounts of calcium, potassium, iron and magnesium, and lower amounts of sodium than normal table salt. But is it worth paying the price? “Yes, pink salt comes from minerals but its content is almost zero,” says Bellatti. “Nobody should try to get minerals with salt. Just because it’s salt from the Himalayas you should not think it has an effect different from any other salt.”
- Coconut water: This drink face is not the panacea for everything that cures dehydration and even cancer. Yes, coconut water is a great source of potassium and other vitamins. But it will make your body the same as drinking a glass of water and a piece of fresh fruit.
- Sports drinks: We have been firmly convinced that we need water with sugar to prepare the workout and rehydrate after the gym. Actually, sports scientists recommend simply drinking water and eating about 20 grams of protein. Studies say it helps rebuild muscles.