As martial artists, we all have our weaknesses and indulge ourselves every once in awhile. However, there are just some things that we absolutely should remove from our diets. You can call it temporary insanity and plead innocent but remember, what you eat now could have a tremendous effect later on in your life.
Here are the 10 Foods You Should Absolutely Avoid; courtesy of Evolve Daily:
Although there’s no denying that soda tastes awesome with just about anything, there are about 40 grams of sugar in a single can of soda! Soda not only does damage to your waistline, but also to your teeth and skin. It affects your hormones, anxiety levels, and your blood glucose. There’s no good reason to drink soda – ever! Next time you’re thirsty, reach for a glass of water or 100% fruit juice.
2) Bottled Salad Dressing
If you think eating a salad drenched in bottled salad dressing equates to healthy eating, you’re dead wrong. Bottled salad dressings often contain high fructose corn syrup, artificial coloring, and sugar. Why not create your own dressing with balsamic vinegar and extra virgin olive oil.
3) Dried Fruit
Don’t be fooled by the word “fruit”. Dried fruits have double and sometimes even triple the amount of sugar of fresh fruit. In fact, you might as well eat a bag of M&Ms or Milky Way, which has 30g of sugar; as opposed to a single serving (1 cup) of dried fruit that has a whopping 70g of sugar. Instead of reaching for that package of dried fruit, opt for fresh fruit instead.
4) Processed Soy
Although soy has been celebrated as a health food trend over the years, processed soy is definitely a food you should avoid. It contains free glutamic acid or MSG, which could cause hyptothyroidism, infertility and promote breast cancer in adult women. Choose whole soy foods such as tofu and tempeh instead. Because they utilize the entire bean in its natural state, it allows the body to access the optimal amount of nutrients the soybean has to offer.
5) Microwave Popcorn
There’s a reason why microwave popcorn seems too good to be true. Microwave popcorn bags are lined with perfluorolkyls, synthethic chemicals added to wrappers to prevent grease from leaking through. Once you stick your bag of popcorn in the microwave, the popcorn becomes exposed to these chemicals. Known for its link to cancer, thyroid disease and infertility, perhaps the best way to cook popcorn is the old fashioned way!
6) Processed Meat
Think about it, anything that lasts longer than a week is bound to have chemical preservatives. Enter processed meat – anything smoked, cured, salted contains sodium nitrate, used to chemically flavor, preserve, and add color. Processed meat includes salami, hotdogs, sausages, ham and unfortunately, bacon. Sad news for bacon lovers; regular consumption of processed meat could increase their risk of colorectal cancer by 21% – yikes!
Packed with trans fats, margarine is made from the lowest quality, highly processed plant-based oils. In the process of creating margarine, free radicals are formed, which increase your risk of cancer, heart disease and hormonal imbalances. Instead of margarine, why not try mashed avocado or extra virgin olive oil?
8) Industrial Seed Oils
Soybean, sunflower seed, corn, and cotton are all considered industrial seed oils because they are highly processed and chemically extracted. Just like margarine, free radicals are formed in this process, creating an imbalance in the omega fatty acids in the body. Substitute industrial seed oils for those that are high in omega-3 and mono-saturated fats such as coconut, olive, macadamia and avocado oil.
Although fat-free food might sound like a healthier option, you might want to think twice before having some. Fat-free food is usually overly processed, which is very damaging to your health. Because people were so fat-conscious, food manufacturers replaced animal fats with unsaturated vegetable oils, leading to a greater consumption of trans fats. To make things worse, they also added more sugar. As you know, refined sugar causes your chances of diabetes, heart disease, and cancer.
10) Refined White Carbohydrates
White rice, bread, white pasta, cookies, cakes, toaster pastries, and basically any snack all contain enriched wheat flour. Enriched wheat flour is usually stripped of nutrients, and digested into your body as simple sugars causing your blood-sugar levels to go haywire. Substitute your white, starchy carbs for complex carbs such as brown rice, quinoa or sweet potatoes as a healthier option.
There’s no better way to start than by going cold turkey and removing these foods from your diet. Remember, the better you eat, the better you’ll look and feel!
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