Foods To Avoid? Here Are A Few – Supposedly

Now, if you have been following the Granite Fitness Blog for a while, you would have realised that Granite Fitness does not advocate an “all or nothing” type of approach, where certain foods are off-limits, period! In fact, we usually go against that kind of thinking, because we feel that any food can be worked into a diet, as long as it is in moderation and within reason to do so. This is covered in more detail in this article.

However, Granite Fitness recognises that opinion on this is split. You probably wouldn’t be surprised to know that there are a lot of articles demonising certain types of food. Sensationalist headlines such as “3 foods to never eat if you want a flat belly” continues to attract attention all over the internet. These are called clickbaits. Well, today I am going to talk about a few of these “evil foods” and some of the supposed claims of what type of havoc they can wreak.

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One: Frappucinos

The first one on this list is a direct attack on white-collar corporate and hipster types. If you don’t know what a frappucino is, you might not fall into either category. Forbes claims that a Grande mocha Frappucino contains up to 19 grams of fat and 480 calories, with the amount being only marginally reduced when non-full cream milk is used instead.

The impact of this is only felt when you compare this to the total number of calories in other foods. A large burger from a fast food chain with all the condiments are reported to have about 440 calories. That means that one frappucino, although it does not look too “potent”, contains more calories than a huge burger. Unbelievable, isn’t it?

Two: Margarine

Margarine was originally touted as a healthier alternative to butter, until the past two decades when it received a huge backlash, both from the butter-producers and the scientific community, with many trying to prove that it is, in fact, worse than butter! Don’t we live in a confusing world where the tides can change so easily and so frequently?

One of the claims made of margarine is that unlike butter, margarine contains a lot of trans fats, which, despite not being present in animal fats, and not containing any bad cholesterol, is said to be the worst kinds of fat there is. Recently, lab studies have found that trans fats can increase “bad” cholesterol while lowering the “good cholesterol” in the human body. So now it looks like the tides have turned and we should all switch back to butter.

Three: Fish (If Raised In A Farm)

Now we have all heard excessively about the benefits of eating fish, haven’t we? Even proponents of low-fat diets would admit that the fats in fish can be classified as “good fats”, and that there are many other compounds such as omega-3 that is ultimately beneficial for us.

However, the benefits of eating fish are apparently a lot less if the fish were raised in a farm. You see, a lot of the nutritional benefits that fish supposedly provides are greatly reduced in farmed fish because of the diet they have been given. Fish in the wild are known to consume omega-3s that are readily found in aquatic plants. On the other hand, fish that are farmed are fed a diet that is high in corn, leading the fish to accumulate high levels of unhealthy fatty acids.

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In addition to that, it is no surprised that fish that are farmed are given antibiotics in order to stimulate them to grow. This, by the way, is not unique to fish. Farm-raised cattle and poultry are also given these chemicals on a regular basis. Ethically, these fish are also exposed to the cruel conditions that farmed poultry and cattle are often exposed to. On that note…. our next item is

Four: Processed Meats

Following on from the previous point, process meats pretty much falls into the same category as farmed fish. Sorry to burst your bubble if you didn’t know this already, but specific types of processed meats such as ham and sausages are especially bad. Why does it always have to be the delicious ones, right? (Yet again I’m a vegetarian, so I’m not complaining, but you are!)

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), increased consumption of processed meats, particularly red meat, can contribute to bowel cancer. This puts them into the same category of cancer-causing agents that include diesel, asbestos, and tobacco. Hard to imagine, isn’t it? Furthermore, a lot of red meat also contains “glyphosate”, which has been classified as a probably carcinogen.

While we’re on the topic and bandwagon of “bashing” meat, this is the perfect time to declare that Deli meats, in particular, are particularly bad for you. An American investigation has revealed that compared to unprocessed meats, deli meats can contain four times as much sodium and 50% more preservatives than unprocessed meats. Furthermore, nitrites and nitrates are often added to enhance the flavour of the meat.

Five: Non-Organic Eggs And Cheese

This one basically hits any non-vegans hard. Apparently, John Hopkins University has found that in addition to being fed antibiotics, hens on factory farms are also fed arsenic and caffeine. Cheese is no better than eggs, with most of it being a mix of solid, whey protein, milk fats, and a whole bunch of miscellaneous emulsifiers.

Six: White Bread

Shots fired at a staple food for some of us in the western world! It is not a surprise that white bread is made from grains that have had their nutritional value removed; otherwise known as refined grains. It also has a high glycaemic index, which means that it can influence your blood sugar levels in a negative way. When eaten regularly and in high doses, this could even contribute to heart disease, type II diabetes and obesity. That’s why every practitioner encourages people to have whole grain or multi grain breads instead. And the same goes for rice and pasta as well.

Seven: Soft Drinks

This one also comes as no surprise to anyone. By the way, this also includes “diet” drinks. The Harvard School of Public Health reported a study that showed that people who drink sugary drinks have a 26% higher chance of getting type II diabetes compared to those who do not. Another study from the same institution states that women who have a can of sugary drink daily has a 75% increased risk of having gout compared to occasional consumers.

So what do you think of the list above? To be honest, it wouldn’t affect my eating and drinking habits at all, because at the end of the day, it’s about achieving a good balance and not overindulging on unhealthy food. That’s how I feel anyway. Hope this makes sense.

Mark

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