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Educate Before You Eat

You are probably aware of which foods are healthy and which ones you should eat regularly. But you might be confused about makes a food unhealthy or bad for you. Consuming unhealthy foods can adversely affect your health; it can result in difficult digestion, nutrient deficiencies, stress on the body, toxic reactions and ultimately the increased risk of disease. For optimum health, avoid the unhealthiest foods.

Here are some great healthy recipes

Refined Sugar

Refined sugar is the primary ingredient in many snack foods, such as baked goods, white bread, crackers, drink mixes, soft drinks, cereals, ice cream and other processed foods. Refined sugars will quickly raise your blood sugar level, causing the release of insulin before dropping off. This will leave you feeling tired and still hungry.

Trans Fat

Trans fat foods include partially hydrogenated oil, margarine, commercial baked goods, potato chips and fried foods, such as doughnuts. Trans fats are artificial fats created from hydrogen ions which react with oil. This type of fat is beneficial to manufacturers as it prolongs shelf life. It is however termed a bad fat because it adversely affects your health by increasing cholesterol levels and the risk of heart disease.

Processed Meat

Avoid lunch meat, sausage, bacon, hot dogs and other highly processed meat products. Eating processed meats will help your waistline grow and increase your risk of stomach or colon cancer due to the high content of preservatives called nitrates. High in fat, calories and sodium, these foods are unhealthy.

Caffeine

Drinks containing caffeine include coffee, black tea, soda and cocoa. Caffeine is a stimulant and can become mildly addicting. If these beverages are sweetened they may contain 150 calories and more than 10 tbsp. of sugar per serving, with soft drinks being the worst. Drinking caffeinated sodas or energy drinks provides you with no nutritional value, simply empty calories, which have been linked to obesity and cavities.

Dairy

Avoid products made with whole milk, and choose low-fat or fat-free instead. Cut out processed cheese and cream products such as full-fat cheese spread, cream cheese, sour cream, cream sauces, whipping cream and ice cream. These items are rich in calories, cholesterol and unhealthy fat.

Sodium

Many foods contain added sodium, in a number of different forms from table salt to monosodium glutamate. Your body needs some sodium to function properly, but only in small amounts. The typical American diet is abundant in sodium. Excess sodium can lead to edema, bloating and even high blood pressure. Condiments, processed cheese and meats, snack foods and especially canned or instant soups are loaded with salt.

Saturated Fat

Red meat, butter, stick margarine, coconut and palm oil, french fries, poultry skin and some seafood are sources of high levels of saturated fat and cholesterol. Saturated fats are solid at room temperature and are typically more stable. Consuming these foods regularly will put you at an increased risk of variety of health conditions such as heart disease, cancer, obesity and arthritis.

Artificial Sweeteners

In an attempt to reduce the intake of table sugar, you might choose artificial sweeteners. However, artificial sweeteners are not whole foods, but rather manufactured products with no nutritive value. Examples of these sweeteners include aspartame, saccharin, acesulfame-K, sucralose, and sorbitol. Found in sugar-free baked goods, chewing gum, gelatin, candy and diet drinks, these products have been linked to many adverse effects. Dizziness, diarrhea, headache, hallucinations and cancer of the uterus, blood vessels, skin, ovaries or bladder may result.

Alcohol

Alcohol acts as a central nervous system depressant, providing you with a relaxed and tranquilized effect. It slows down physical processes and mental alertness. These drinks provide no nutritive value other than empty calories.

High Fructose Corn Syrup

High Fructose Corn Syrup is a sweetener made from a mixture of pure corn syrup and corn syrup that has gone through a chemical process to convert glucose to fructose. The result is an extremely sweet, inexpensive sweetener and preservative are some evidence that high-fructose corn syrup may be a cause of obesity. The Corn Refiners Association indicates that high-fructose corn syrup is just another sugar, similar to maple syrup or table sugar.

High fructose corn syrup was developed because of its ease of use, low cost, color and because it maintains its sweetness. Many foods contain high fructose corn syrup, including soft drinks, baking products, condiments, bread, cereal, cough syrup, prepared sauces, ice cream, salad dressings, soups and snack foods. Rich in simple sugars, high fructose corn syrup is readily converted to fat, yet it is not easily metabolized by your liver. It is a risk factor for obesity, Type 2 diabetes, stroke, cancer and coronary heart disease.

Bottled, Canned and Jarred Foods

When you read the ingredients label on a bottle, jar or can of food, you are likely to find high-fructose corn syrup. Most salad dressings contain high-fructose corn syrup, as do many condiments, such as mustard, mayonnaise and tomato-based sauces. You will also find it, unexpectedly, in many savory foods, such as canned soups and stews.

There are two reasons for the ubiquity of high-fructose. It acts as a preservative, greatly extending the shelf life of pantry staples. It also provides a slightly sweet taste that enhances the flavors of the ingredients and suits the taste for sweetness that most Western palates have developed.

Fast Foods

Fast-food sodas contain high-fructose corn syrup, but it is found in other menu items, as well. High-fructose corn syrup browns up well, so it is used in many fast-food buns, including McDonald’s hamburger buns and Burger King’s croissants, to promote browning and preserve freshness. It can also be found in some pizza crusts, such as those served at Pizza Hut, as well as in fast-food salad dressings and in many of the condiments used on sandwiches.

Baby Formula

high-fructose corn syrup in baby formula is a cause for alarm. Early introduction to high-fructose corn syrup can lead to obesity and serious health problems, such as Type 2 diabetes, later in life. It can also cause babies to develop an inappropriate taste for sweetness. Read the nutrition and ingredient labels carefully to check for the presence of high-fructose corn syrup in formulas.

Cough Syrup

Cough syrups and liquid cold medications may contain high-fructose corn syrup. Medications from Vicks, Robitussin, Dimetapp and Delsym all list corn syrup on their labels as inactive ingredients. The syrup is used as a sweetener to flavor the medicine and a preservative to extend its shelf life.

Baked Goods

Most baked goods are likely to contain some sugar, but many consumers are unaware that, in many premade and commercial baked goods, high-fructose corn syrup is the main sweetener. Because it is inexpensive, it makes baked goods more affordable to produce. Baked goods containing high-fructose corn syrup also have longer shelf lives.

High-fructose corn syrup is a sweetener made from a mixture of pure corn syrup and corn syrup that has gone through a chemical process to convert glucose to fructose. The result is an extremely sweet, inexpensive sweetener and preservative. There is some evidence that high-fructose corn syrup may be a cause of obesity. The Corn Refiners Association indicates that high-fructose corn syrup is just another sugar, similar to maple syrup or table sugar.

Bottled, Canned and Jarred Foods

When you read the ingredients label on a bottle, jar or can of food, you are likely to find high-fructose corn syrup. Most salad dressings contain high-fructose corn syrup, as do many condiments, such as mustard, mayonnaise and tomato-based sauces. You will also find it, unexpectedly, in many savory foods, such as canned soups and stews.

List of Foods That Have High Fructose Corn Syrup

High fructose corn syrup is used instead of sugar to sweeten a wide variety of beverages and foods. The possible adverse health effects of consuming high fructose corn syrup include obesity and kidney disease, although studies have been conflicting. The sweetener is often used in products where it might not be expected.

Drinks

Many sodas and other sweetened drinks contain high fructose corn syrup. According to SweetSurprise.com, a website maintained by the Corn Refiners Association, high fructose corn syrup provides greater stability in carbonated sodas than sucrose and helps maintain the consistency and stability of flavors over time.

Breads and Cereals

Breads, including whole grain breads, are often sweetened with high fructose corn syrup, which, according to SweetSurprise.com, gives baked goods “a pleasing brown crust.” High fructose corn syrup is also commonly used in sweetened breakfast cereals. In cereal bars, high fructose corn syrup helps maintain a soft texture and prevent spoilage.

Meats

Processed meats, such as cold cuts and hot dogs, may contain high fructose corn syrup.

Dairy Products

When used in yogurt, high fructose corn syrup provides fermentable sugars, controls moisture to help prevent separation, enhances flavor, and helps regulate tartness, according to SweetSurprise.com. Other dairy products sweetened with high fructose corn syrup include whipped cream, ice cream, and cottage cheese with toppings.

Condiments and Sauces

Condiments and sauces sweetened with high fructose corn syrup include ketchup, salad dressings, barbecue sauce and spaghetti sauce.

Fruits and Vegetables

Processed fruits and vegetables may contain high fructose corn syrup. These products include baked beans, pickles, canned tomatoes, applesauce, and cranberry sauce. High fructose corn syrup helps preserve the texture of canned fruits and reduce freezer burn in frozen fruit, according to SweetSurprise.com.

Crackers

Many crackers, including savory crackers, contain high fructose corn syrup.

Candies, Jam, Jellies, and Syrups

As might be expected, many sweet treats contain high fructose corn syrup.