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Top Processed Foods to Avoid for Healthier Meals

Bacon frying

Healthy eating isn't just about cutting carbs, fat, and sugars. Processed food and chemicals can also really impact your diet. Even though they are often staples - the foods below are not recommended based on their processed ingredients.

Bacon

Bacon contains high levels of sodium, which can lead to high blood pressure. And sodium is just the beginning.

Part of the reason why bacon is so delicious is because it’s loaded with saturated fat. Saturated fat is linked to heart disease and obesity. Danger also lurks in virtually all store-bought bacon because of how many preservatives it contains, which are related to every health concern from headaches to cancer.

Granola Bar
Consider the granola bar, also known as the cereal bar. They are stuffed with hearty grains and packaged in boxes featuring mountains and sunrises. So wholesome!

Too bad granola bars are also loaded with added sugars, which digest quickly and don’t satisfy hunger for long. Despite their healthy marketing image, granola bars don’t offer much in the way of good nutrition. Avoid them for their high simple-carbohydrate count and the long ingredient list filled with difficult-to-pronounce words.

Dried Fruits
You might reach for a handful of raisins or a few spears of dried mango to satisfy a sweet tooth. There’s probably a really good reason they are so satisfying. These dried fruits are a better option than Skittles, since they have a good amount of fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Be careful with the portion, however — even a small portion carries a high-calorie, high-sugar punch.

The extra sugar also promises weight gain. If you eat more than your body needs, it adds to your body’s fat store.

Flavored Nuts

Flavored nuts have a shelf of their own in the sounds-good-for-you-but-isn’t pantry.

Whether they are maple-flavored, soy sauce- and wasabi-dusted, or coated in toffee, flavored nuts are packed with extra salt and sugar. This extra salt and sugar can lead to weight gain, diabetes, and high blood pressure.

Their sticky, sugary goodness also makes them the enemy of healthy teeth.

Margarine

There was a time when margarine was considered the healthy alternative to butter. However, the truth is that some margarine contains a lot of trans fats, which is considered more unhealthy than any other fat, including saturated fats.

Ketchup

“Catsup” or “ketchup”? No matter where you stand on the spelling debate, America’s favorite condiment spells bad news.

While a little dollop of ketchup is fine, the amounts we slather onto our burgers and fries is problematic, as is the frequency.

The tomatoes in ketchup are so diluted by sugar and salt that they offer no natural value. With most of the calories in ketchup coming from sugar, you might as well sprinkle your fries with sugar!



2016-11-18 00:00:00
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