By Bukola Amoboye
Whether you are trying to diet for the purpose of fit-fam, or just looking to spice up your cuisine with variety, you should know that not all foods are as harmless as they seem. In fact, some can prove quite harmful to your health when taken excessively. The fact that certain foods or edibles are tagged low-fat, low-carb or gluten-free doesn’t necessarily mean that they are good for you. Here are seven such meals you should refrain from eating too often.
Although granolas are, in fact, nutritious and have been sold as the best snack for people on a diet, a lot of the branded ones are packed with added sugar and are, in fact, very high in calories. So, you might want to reduce your intake of these products or make yours using easy DIY recipes with oats, nuts and dried fruits.
Cereals are go-to breakfast meals for many people, especially those who don’t necessarily have time to cook. And the general rule of fit-fam or healthy eating also states that breakfast is the day’s most important meal. We do not dispute this, but you should know that since it is the most important meal of the day, you should put the most effort into it, and cereals are not the best way to go most of the time. Most cereals are made with refined grains with most of the nutrients gone from them and are packed instead with lots of sugar, including the ones claiming to be healthy for adults. Sure, you can snack on cereals from time to time, but if you are looking to cultivate a healthy diet or reduce your dependency on sugars. You might need to forego comfort and drastically reduce your cereal consumption.
Pre- Packaged Smoothies.
Smoothies are, in fact, quite filling and generously healthy. However, you might want to stick to homemade smoothies. Again, many smoothies sold in stores, restaurants, etc., contain added sugar. Manufacturers have also observed how addictive sugar can be, and to keep consumers coming back for more, they tend to add sugar to these smoothies. It is, in fact, quite rare to purchase a premade smoothie that doesn’t contain added sugars or even frozen yoghurt, which is just another outlet for sugar. Now, if you absolutely need to buy, ensure you are fully aware of the ingredients used.
Whole Wheat Bread.
This one might be a shocker. Wheat bread has been the go-to alternative to white bread for the longest time. Admittedly, wheat bread is packed with nutrients and is more filling than white bread, but it isn’t necessarily a food you should indulge in too often. One reason is that with the advent of crossbreeding food technology and genetic modification, your favourite whole wheat bread may not be 100% wheat. Also, those labelled as ‘honey wheat bread’ also put consumers at risk of high blood sugar levels because they tend to contain added sugars. Lastly, if you plan to go gluten-free, wheat bread is not the way to go, as gluten is typically found in wheat, barley, rye, etc.
Egg White Omelettes.
One misleading notion is that egg yolks are bad for you. While we admit that egg yolks contain cholesterol, eating only egg whites deprives your body of essential vitamins, including Vitamins A, B12, D, E and K, and omega-3 fats. The egg yolk is nutritionally healthier than plain egg white, but of course, everything ought to be done in moderation. To maintain balance, we recommend you combine one whole egg and one egg white in your omelettes.
Oatmeal is typically a healthy meal, but like yoghurts, it can be turned into your regular sugar-packed meal. Lately, popular oatmeal brands have decided that regular oats are too bland and chose to spice it up for consumers by adding all sorts of flavours that are basically just sugar in disguise. Your best bet is to avoid or limit your intake of flavoured oatmeal and instead add fresh fruits like strawberries, blueberries, bananas, etc., to regular oats for variety.
Fruits and cashew nuts may be healthy, but they are nothing compared to the truckload of sweetened yoghurt, granola, dried fruits and in some cases, whipped cream crammed into one cup of parfait. As a result, you probably shouldn’t binge on parfait three nights in a row. A more advisable option is to curate your parfait using unsweetened yoghurt, cashews, fruits, and other healthy toppings.
When it comes to eating right, regardless of your reason, the key is moderation. You must learn how to eat your favourite foods without turning them into your body’s worst nightmare.