So many of us are doing our best to lead healthy lives and eat the healthy foods, which is amazing! However, the food companies are against us in the battle of good and evil and consistently try to sabotage our efforts to take our health to the next level.
There is s much conflicting information online, we don't really understand the food label jargon and we are easily distracted by clever protect placements and advertising.
The time has come for us to stand up and fight back. We need to become more aware of the realities behind the masquerade of "health food" marketing! But where to start? This can be a hard quest to begin so lets get it kick started right here and right now and go through some basic facts which you may not know. It is time to take a trip down the rabbit hole to find the truth behind these so called "health foods"
I am going to cover TWO UNDER COVER DANGERS which are my personal pet hates. Two things that are major tricks of the industry that fool so many people into thinking you are being healthy when in fact you might be making a really bad health choice
Under Cover Danger 1
LOW FAT and LIGHT and DIET!
However, there is one big problem with foods that have had the fat removed from them… they taste HORRIBLE.For this reason, the food manufacturers added sugar and sweetners instead.
Sugar is not a fat, it’s a carbohydrate. Therefore, a product can be labelled “low fat” even though it is loaded with sugar. Those refined sugar and carbs turn to fat in the body anyway! YIKES!!
“Low fat” foods lowers your guard and tricks you into thinking you are eating something good for you. The added refined sugars will lead to blood sugar swings and cravings making it more difficult to control our overall food intake - which means that third or forth 'low fat' biscuit starts to look very tempting!
A diet too high in these “low fat” products can be just as unhealthy as a high-fat diet because it increases the risk of diabetes, heart disease and causes high cholesterol levels.
Suspect no. 1 - McVities Digestive
7 Ingredients. Sugar is the 4th ingredient which is fairly low on the list. The fat is the 2nd ingredient on the list but still only 5% of your daily intake. Over all, for a biscuit, these are really not that bad. Enjoy one or two your cheat day. I know I do!
Lets check out the Light version
We now have 8 ingredients instead of 7 which is the first interesting thing to note. When looking for healthy foods, you want the product with the least ingredients as possible. Whats this mysterious added ingredient? AN E NUMBER!!!! This particular E number which they have added is like a binding agent which help bind the ingredients together but is also linked to possible liver and kidney problems which in my opinion I would rather do without.
The second thing to note that although yes there is less fact, sugar has now bumped it's way up to the 2nd ingredient instead of the 4th. Not only that but they have also added a sweetener called Glucose Fructose syrup. There have been some studies suggesting fructose may not be as satiating (producing a feeling of fullness) as other sugars because it does not stimulate the hormones that affect hunger and food intake (such as insulin), and therefore could be factor which causes people to eat or drink more instead of feeling fuller. As a result, it is sometimes refereed to as the crack of sweetness and is also used in coca cola...which we all know is NOT a health food.
The healthier option out of these two biscuits for me would be the regular full fat version. Both versions have almost the same calories anyway, so I would rather have a little bit extra fat and less sugar than an E number and sweeter syrup which tricks my brain into wanting more to eat.
Suspect no. 2 - Coca Cola - Life and Diet
I often hear my clients tell me that it is ok to have diet coke because it is diet and has less sugar. That
may be so, but lets take a look at what else is added.
Here we are in the middle of regular coke and diet coke where we can see three red flags...
Red Flag 1
Regular has 6 Ingredients
Diet has 8 Ingredients
Red Flag 2
Regular yes contains sugar
Diet, however contains Aspartame is covered below in more detail but it is a sweetener linked to varies illness and disease.
Red Flag 3
Diet also contains another sweetener; Acesulfame-K which is a known Carcinogen. Known as "Ace-K", it is a potassium salt containing methylene chloride, Acesulfame-K is not the same thing as Aspartame, but quite often, BOTH are found in the same products. Reported side effects of "sweet devil" Acesulfame-K are frightening: "Long term exposure to methylene chloride can cause nausea, headaches, mood problems, impairment of the liver and kidneys, problems with eyesight and possibly cancer. Acesulfame-K may contribute to hypoglycemia." (www.fitday.com)
Also, of all the artificial sweeteners out there, Acesulfame-K has undergone the least scientific scrutiny. Early studies showed a link to multiple cancer developments in lab animals. If you have any doubts whatsoever, remember this; humans have 99% the same DNA as the lab mice and rats tested. The "proof is in the pudding!" The research is concrete on this and ignorance is NOT bliss! (http://archives.cnn.com) This carcinogen, so cutely nicknamed "Ace-K," is derived from Aceto-acetic acid and Fluoro-sulfonyl Iso-Cyanate. Say that last part again and it sounds like you're eating cyanide. Consider your TOTAL health risks before consuming ANY artificial sweetener. Better safe than sorry!
Under Cover Danger 2
Souped up "health" or "slimming" drinks
Desperate times calls for desperate measures and many give into meal replacement slimming shakes. There are one or two brands out their that deliver TOP QUALITY meal replacement shakes with very little or zero junk. However, 99% of the slimming drinks out there are basically fizzy drinks with a little fat and protein mixed in when you look more closely
Suspect no. 1 - Slimfast
Very popular as a go to drink, widely available and fairly affordable so "why not!?" is what most would say. Here are the FACTS. Not my opinion, plain and simple facts. Sugar is the first ingredient. When you understand and acknowledge that ingredients are listed in order of highest to lowest quantity this is absolutely HORRIFYING to say the least. Over consuming sugar is the route to weight gain, obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, heart attacks and more. If that's not enough lets read on. They have protein from milk. Milk can also a contributing factor to weight gain as well as being linked to gut problems and acne and other skin problems. Last and not least, lets talk about the Aspartame. I do not even know where to begin with this other than to let you know that it is also linked to weight gain. Other side effects include but not limited to fatigue, nausea, joint pain, loss of taste and loss of memory. For the full low down click here. Over all, I really cannot say this is a health drink or a healthy way to diet or lose weight
INGREDIENTSSugar, High Oleic Sunflower Oil, Maltodextrin, Gum Arabic, Milk Protein Concentrate, Cellulose Gel, Soy Fiber, Buttermilk Powder, Potassium Phosphate, Xanthan Gum, Dextrose, Salt, Guar Gum, Soybean Lecithin, Artificial Flavor, Carrageenan, Sodium Phosphate, Acesulfame Potassium (A Non Nutritive Sweetner) and Aspartame.
Suspect no 2 - Forever Lite
Another interesting "healthy" drink out which is widely used and also affordable. What the problem here?
While these are much better than the slim fast, I feel there are two major factors which need to addressed with this meal replacement. The first is the Soy Protein. Soy has been under fire of late, and for very good reason.
Here are a few pointers.
· Soybeans contain phytoestrogens, which mimic the body’s natural estrogen hormones. For men, this can lead to a testosterone imbalance, infertility, low sperm count, and increased risk of cancers. For women, it can cause estrogen dominance, which has been linked to infertility, menstrual troubles and cancer…
· These phytoestrogens are so strong that a baby consuming only soy formula is consuming the equivalent hormones of 4 birth control pills a day!
· The high levels of phytic acid in soy inhibit the body’s ability to absorb important minerals, including zinc, calcium, copper, iron and magnesium (which many people are dangerously deficient in already). This also means that it may cancel out many of the amazing added minerals they have added to this drink.
The second point I would need to bring up at this point is the fructose which is madly mis understood in the health world. Sugar (sucrose) and High Fructose Corn Syrup both supply a significant portion of the total calories in a standard western diet. They both consist of two simple sugars… glucose and fructose.Glucose also comes from starches like potatoes, our bodies produce it and every cell on the face of the earth has glucose in it. Glucose is a molecule absolutely vital to life.