Making your own meals is better, rather than buying processed food from outside. But, sometimes, due to your busy schedule, cooking food for yourself isn't possible. However, health-conscious people will make sure that they add the safest and healthy ingredients in their food. So, in this article, we will be writing about the worst food ingredients to avoid.
Whenever you go shopping to the grocery store, read the labels of the products carefully. When you purchase processed, packaged, and manufactured foods, there is a high chance those foods contain food additives designed to increase shelf life and to improve the flavour and texture.
Labels can be deceiving, so it is better to read them carefully, nutritionists and health experts warn.
The next time when you go shopping, steer clear of these ingredients. Instead, opt for whole foods which contain minimally processed stuff that will provide your body with the most important nutrients and not harm you in any which way.
Read on to know the worst food ingredients to avoid.
1. Vegetable Oil
Soybean oil, corn oil, and cottonseed oil are highly processed and contain high amounts of essential omega 6 polyunsaturated fats. If these oils are consumed in moderation, omega 6 fatty acids can be beneficial for your heart.
But over-consumption can cause a negative imbalance with omega 3 fatty acids. Instead of using vegetable oil for cooking, use avocado oil and extra virgin olive oil as these oils give out a delicate subtle flavour into your dishes.
2. Artificial Sweeteners
Artificial sweeteners are processed sweeteners that have been linked to an increased risk of type 2 diabetes and caloric intake throughout the day. Artificial sweeteners are sugar substitutes which are up to 700 times sweeter than natural sugar.
You can swap artificial sweeteners for jaggery to cut back on calories.
Margarine contains artery-clogging saturated fats and is made with processed oils that may be pro-inflammatory. Inflammation can lead to an increased risk of obesity, diabetes, heart disease and cancer.
So, ditch the margarine and include butter in your diet. Butter has powerful antioxidants and anti-cancer properties and improves cardiovascular health.
4. Food Colouring
Artificial food dyes which are used for colouring baked goods have negative side effects. Some food colourings that are used today may contain harmful chemicals that can cause cancer and also trigger hyperactivity in children.
Instead of using food colouring, use natural sources of colour like beetroot juice, red cabbage or purple cabbage, and paprika.
5. Monosodium Glutamate (MSG)
Monosodium glutamate has many names like maltodextrin, sodium caseinate, autolyzed yeast, autolyzed vegetable protein, hydrolyzed vegetable protein, yeast extract, and even citric acid. MSG is found in packaged soups, packaged noodles, diet beverages, packaged sausages, beef stew, salad dressing, and some packaged vegetarian foods.
Monosodium Glutamate leads to obesity, metabolic syndrome, and type 2 diabetes.
6. High-fructose Corn Syrup
High-fructose corn syrup is an artificial sweetener found in almost all processed foods like bread, flavoured yogurts, salad dressings, cereals, and canned vegetables. High-fructose corn syrup increases the cholesterol levels and has been associated with obesity and diabetes.
7. Processed Peanut Butter
Many processed peanut butter in the market today contain hydrogenated and processed vegetable oils. This, in turn, raises your cholesterol levels. Instead, use natural peanut butter that contains nothing more than peanuts and salt.
8. Pancake Syrup
Pancake syrup is made with a combination of high-fructose corn syrup, artificial flavours, and caramel colouring. It also contains added sugar which can increase your blood sugar levels.
Instead, consume 100 percent natural maple syrup which is a good source of calcium, potassium, and magnesium.
9. Flavoured Yogurt
Today, many flavoured yogurts found in the market use sugar to compensate for the lack of fat. It might come as a shocking truth to you, the flavoured yogurt that you have been consuming contains more sugar than a candy bar. When you remove fat from a naturally fatty food like yogurt, you have to compensate for the taste by adding sugar.
10. Condensed Milk
You will often find dessert recipes that add condensed milk. Did you know one serving of sweetened condensed milk has 22 grams of sugar and 45 mg of sodium? Also, condensed milk lacks in essential nutrients compared to whole milk and plant-based milk, that contain important nutrients.
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