Foods a nutritionist would never eat
Sometimes it seems like all you read is, “eat this diet superfood” or “snack on this to lose weight.” There is a lot of information out there about what, when, and how you should be eating to stay healthy. But sometimes, it’s easier to just cut through all of the mumbo-jumbo and find out what NOT eat or drink.
Fortunately, Shape.com asked their favorite nutritionist, Dr. Mike Roussell, to share which foods he absolutely will not put in his body. After all, who better to ask than a healthy eating expert! You’ll want to take these four items off your grocery list ASAP:
Fat-free salad dressing
A healthy salad dressing like vinaigrette is the perfect combination of vinegar (which helps control blood sugar) and plant oils (full of essential fatty acids). But when fat-free salad dressings came into the mix, consumers got a lot more than they bargained for. “An irrational fear of dietary fats has forced food companies to mess around with this perfect blend and the resulting fat-free salad dressings have introduced sugar and high fructose corn syrup, un-pronounceable emulsifying agents, and other food science secrets used to make the unnatural seem natural,” says Dr. Roussell.
Refined and re-fortified grains
Most pastas, cereals, chips, crackers and breads found on supermarket shelves are refined and re-fortified grains, which means that the naturally occurring fiber, vitamins, and minerals in these foods have been removed. According to Dr. Roussell, “Companies then replace the fiber and synthetic versions of the vitamins and minerals that were initially removed.” Dr. Roussell warns not to be fooled by ‘whole grain’ product claims, as sometimes companies put everything back in what they call “naturally occurring ratios” in order to get around labeling loop-holes. Instead opt for brown rice, oatmeal and whole-wheat breads, pastas and crackers.
These beverages provide no nutritional benefit and are the leading source of excess calories in adolescent diets. We’re looking at you, soda, juice and sports drinks! “Simple sugars do an excellent job of lowering your good cholesterol and increasing your triglyceride levels (two risk factors for heart disease),” warns Dr. Roussell. And the worst part? These empty calorie beverages pad your waistline without offering you any sense of satiety so you’re bound to go search for other unhealthy foods to fill you up. According to Dr. Roussell sugar-sweetened sports drinks also disturb your body’s inflammatory balance, making it harder for you to recover from exercise. So next time you’re thirsty, instead reaching for a can of soda or sweetened tea, opt for water, which you can shake up with lemons, limes, etc.
“They may have been touted as the ultimate diet food during the low-fat/no-fat craze of the late 1980s and 1990s, but don’t be fooled,” warns Dr. Roussell. Rice cakes have one of the highest glycemic index, almost as high as glucose which scores a 100 on the glycemic index scale. So when dieters were swallowing bags of rice cakes, what they didn’t know was that their body was recognizing them as a food worse than table sugar! Dr. Roussell also shares that rice cakes are the kind of carbohydrate that will send your blood sugar on a roller coaster ride, making it a food that’s not only bad for long-term weight loss, but also dangerous for your overall health.
For the full list, check out Shape.com.