Articles related to health often incessantly talk about making healthy food choices. However, what if some of the recommended foods were a threat to our health? What if everyday food items we use without pausing for a second thought are actually responsible for the ills that plague our health? This article delves away from the usual chatter about eating healthy or providing lists of healthy foods. Instead, it tries to enlighten you about common food items that pose a significant and clear risk to our well-being. We move away from talking about white breads and sodas that are now universally acknowledged as bad food choices and explore unassumingly unhealthy food items like:
1. Vegetable Oils
Vegetable oils are used in some format across every gourmet and household cooking across the world. The reason is rather simple—it is a medium to cook food without which the best of culinary skills cannot survive. Vegetable oils are derived from plants and this gives them an aura of being very healthy. However, some of the most popular vegetable oils like safflower, corn, soyabean and palm oil are heavy in unsaturated fats. These are the harmful type of fat molecules that engage more free radicals which are a threat to our overall immunity. Not many people realize that oils are more than just a reservoir of energy for plants. They are also a medium of protecting themselves against grazing animals. As a result, many plant oils are loaded with digestive retarders. The animal digestive system is a lot more capable in terms of digesting raw foods and even they struggle if the concentration of such oils surpasses a certain level. Humans are more likely to suffer from digestive issues, particularly absorption of nutrients, if a similar concentration of vegetable oils is established. Most recently, many adulterants, including food perfumant compounds and other additives to change the viscosity of oils have been found in leading vegetable oil brands. These are essentially chemical compounds that shouldn’t be consumed on a daily basis.
2. Processed Cheese
The French would love to argue this point but the fact remains that cheese, in particular processed varieties, are a poor food choice for any age group. Most of you might not realise that some of the more discounted and cheaper versions of packaged cheese that now flood the supermarkets are banned from sale in many European nations that have strict food nutrition policies. This prohibition stems from the fact that these processed cheese varieties are not created in the typical cheese-making manner. The entire process is manipulated by using chemical additives and sodium derivatives that are not considered fit for human consumption. It is said that just two slices of processed cheese in your burger satisfies you daily requirement of salt for a day! Add high concentrations of trans-fats, non-organic colors and very questionable chemical preservatives and you have the perfect health disaster packed in thin layers in a ready-to-bite format.
Perhaps, the most innocent and most child-friendly of all everyday condiments that are omnipresent on every household table, the ketchup is the biggest sinner of them all when it comes to upsetting our daily health schedule. Ketchups are typically advertised for containing antioxidants like lycopene but they are also overloaded with starch derivatives, salt and sugar. This is the perfect combination to drive your arteries towards the haloed grounds of choke-dom. Even if this doesn’t happen instantly, you can bet upon the fact that with daily consumption of your favorite ketchup, the promised land of bad health isn’t too far away. The high sodium and fructose corn syrup content make ketchups the worst possible choice for those who have been diagnosed with hypertension, diabetes or obesity.
4. Soy Sauce
Soy sauce demands a separate discussion for itself, away from ketchups, since it puts forth health risks that are unique to it. Firstly, most people don’t realize that there are actually different types of soy sauces available. Conventionally, the unfermented variety is the unhealthiest as it contains Phytic acid. This compound can impair the absorption of critical nutrients, like calcium, in our body. For women, soy sauce presents an imminent danger to their thyroid hormone levels. Soy consumption over a period can lead to development of kidney stones since the entire range of constituents found in this concoction are not digested fully by most people. For many, soy sauce is a cause of food allergies and digestive problems, including bloating and water retention.
5. Packaged Soup Mixes
Soup mixes are found across every shopping mall with food courts retailing the most engaging range of flavors. However, that easy-to-make soup mix can be a deterrent to your health, particularly if consumed regularly. For starters, soup mixes contain a very refined form of starch. These edibles are digested quickly in our bodies, spiking the blood sugar levels. This makes soup mixes a bad choice for those trying to maintain their weight or losing a few pounds and a poor food choice for everybody who is at the risk of developing blood sugar problems. Many of the preservatives found in soup sachets have been traced as possible cancerous compounds. This should seriously tilt the scale in favor of natural, homemade soups that retain the freshness and longevity of compounds found in animal and plant ingredients. Lastly, most soup mixes are heavy in salt, making us exceed our daily, recommended limit for salt intake. This is a direct threat to our overall metabolism, and a risk to those with high blood pressure or cardiac issues.