Sugary Drinks – The most fattening aspect of the modern diet. As the brain doesn’t “register” them as food, therefore people don’t automatically compensate by eating less of other foods, and end up drastically increasing their calorie intake. Sugar is strongly linked to non-alcoholic fatty liver disease and is also associated with various serious diseases, including type 2 diabetes and heart disease Alternatives: Drink water, soda water, coffee or tea instead.
Most Pizzas, one of the world’s most popular junk foods. The problem is that most commercially prepared pizzas are made with seriously unhealthy ingredients. The dough is made from highly refined wheat flour, and the meats on them are usually processed. Pizza is also extremely high in calories. Alternatives: Some pizza places use healthier ingredients. Homemade pizzas can also be very healthy, as long as you choose wholesome ingredients.
. White Bread, which is generally made from wheat, which contains gluten. All wheat-based breads are a bad idea for people who have celiac disease or gluten sensitivity. However, most commercial breads are unhealthy for everyone, because most are made from refined wheat, which is low in essential nutrients and leads to rapid spikes in blood sugar. Alternatives: For people who can tolerate gluten, Ezekiel bread is an excellent choice. Whole grain bread is also definitely better than white bread
. Most Fruit Juices are often assumed to be healthy. However, many fruit juices are actually little more than fruit-flavoured sugar water. Juice does contain some antioxidants and vitamin C, however it also contains just as much sugar as a sugary drink like Coke, and sometimes even more. Alternatives: Some fruit juices have been shown to have health benefits despite the sugar content, such as pomegranate and blueberry. Water is still the best alternative.
Industrial Vegetable Oils. In the last 100 years or so, people have increased their consumption of added fats due to a drastic increase in the consumption of refined vegetable oils such as soybean, corn, cottonseed and canola. These oils are very high in omega-6 fatty acids, highly sensitive to oxidation and cause increased oxidative stress in the body. They have also been linked to increased risk of cancer.
Margarine is a highly processed pseudo-food that has been engineered to look and taste like butter. It is loaded with artificial ingredients, and is usually made with industrial vegetable oils that have been hydrogenated to make them more solid. This increases their trans-fat content significantly. Alternatives: Use real butter instead, preferably from grass-fed cows
Pastries, Cookies and Cakes - Most pastries, cookies and cakes are made with refined sugar, refined wheat flour and added fats, which are often disturbingly unhealthy fats like shortening (high in trans-fats). With almost no essential nutrients, but tons of calories and unhealthy ingredients, they are literally some of the worst things that you can put into your body
French Fries and Potato Chips: Whole, white potatoes are very healthy. However, products that are made from them, such as fries and potato chips, are very high in calories, and it is easy to eat excessive amounts. These foods may also contain large amounts of acrylamides, carcinogenic substances that form when potatoes are fried, baked or roasted. Alternatives: Potatoes are best consumed boiled, not fried. If you need something crunchy to replace potato chips, try baby carrots or nuts.
Gluten-Free Junk Foods. There are many glutenfree diets. However, people replace the gluten foods with junk gluten-free processed foods which are often high in sugar, unhealthy oils and refined grains like corn starch or tapioca starch. These refined starches lead to rapid spikes in blood sugar, and are extremely low in essential nutrients. Alternatives: Choose foods that are naturally glutenfree, like unprocessed plants and animal foods.
. Agave Nectar: Agave nectar is a highly refined sweetener that is often marketed as healthy. It is extremely high in fructose and can be disastrous for
Low-Fat Yogurt: Yogurt can be incredibly healthy. Unfortunately, most yogurts are loaded with sugar to make up for the lack of taste that the fats provided. They are made ‘healthy’ by replacing natural dairy fats removed, with much worse ingredients.Alternatives: Choose regular, full-fat yogurt that contains live or active cultures (probiotics). If you can get your hands on it, choose yogurt from grass-fed cows.
Low-Carb Junk Foods: Processed low-carb replacement products, such as low-carb candy bars and meal replacements, are often highly processed foods and contain very little actual nutrition. There are plenty of real foods that you can eat on a low-carb diet, most of which are very healthy. Alternatives: If you’re on a low-carb diet, eat foods that are naturally low in carbs.
Ice Cream is one of the unhealthiest foods on the planet. Most commercial ice cream is loaded with sugar, high in calories, and it is very easy to eat excessive amounts. Eating it for dessert is even worse, because then you’re adding it all on top of your total calorie intake. Alternatives: It is possible to make your own ice cream using healthier ingredients and significantly less (or no) sugar.
. Processed Meat. Even though unprocessed meat can be healthy and nutritious, processed meats lead to higher risks of many serious diseases, including colon cancer, type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Alternatives: If you want to eat bacon, sausages, pepperoni and other “processed” meats, then choose wisely and try to buy them locally from sellers who don’t add a lot of unhealthy ingredients. Quality counts
. Processed Cheese. Regular cheese is healthy. It is loaded with nutrients, and a single slice of cheese contains all the same nutrients as an entire glass of milk. However, processed cheese products are mostly made with filler ingredients that are combined and engineered to have a similar look and texture as cheese. Read labels, and make sure that you eat actual not processed cheese. Alternatives: Eat real cheese instead
. Most Fast Food Meals. This is because generally most “fast food” chains serve only junk foods. The majority of the food they offer is mass-produced, highly engineered junk food with very little nutritional value
High-Calorie “Coffee” Drinks: Coffee is very healthy. It is loaded with antioxidants which helps lower risks of serious diseases, like type 2 diabetes and Parkinson’s. However, coffee with artificial creamer and added sugar is just as unhealthy as any other sugar-sweetened beverage. Alternatives: Drink plain coffee instead. Black is best, but small amounts of heavy cream or full-fat milk are fine as well.