3 Foods Surgeons Are Calling “Death Foods”

We all know that some foods aren’t great to consume, but they aren’t all the same.  Some of these unhealthy foods are so bad that some surgeons have begun referring to them as “death foods”!  Sound dramatic?  A little.  But perhaps that name is warranted, and even necessary, in order to grab our attention and convince us to stay away from these dangerous foods.  Just what are they?  Keep reading the list below to find out what these so-called death foods really are, and why you should be avoiding them!

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Sugary drinks

Whether it’s soda, which we already know is packed with dangerous chemicals, or fruit juice with added sugar, the point is that sugary drinks are one of these “death foods” because sugar is toxic and causes many healthy problems.  While sugar can be naturally ocurring, meaning that a totally natural fruit juice is fine, unless you make it yourself, it’s likely that it contains some form of added sugar (which can have tricky names on the ingredients label to hide this increasingly undesirable ingredient).  While sugar is something we should all be aiming to cut out of our diets as much as possible, it’s especially dangerous to drink sugary drinks, because we don’t become full or satisfied, and we often don’t realize how much sugar we’re really consuming. Lay off the soda AND the fruit juice or energy drinks, and try to drink your coffee or tea with stevia instead of sugar, and drink more water instead.  If you’re worried about getting bored with water, check out these great infused water ideas here!

 

Whole grains

While these are often touted as a healthier option than refined grains, the truth is that they still aren’t the ideal way to consume carbohydrates.  You can get more carbs, fiber, and nutrients from vegetables than you can from whole wheat bread, brown rice, etc.  This doesn’t mean whole grains are bad for you no matter what, but the truth is that many of us tend to abuse whole grain foods because we think they’re a health food.  The truth is they’re a healthier option compared to an unhealthy food, but it doesn’t mean that they should make an appearance on our plates every day.  Try packing more vegetables on your plate if you really want to see a difference in your health!

Canola and other vegetable oils

These need to make their way out of your pantry, stat!  Canola and other vegetable oils are hydrogenated, meaning they can cause your body to store more fat, as well as increase inflammation in your body.  It may seem harmless if you’re only using it to grease your pan, but switch to other healthier oils like olive or coconut, or use an organic butter instead!

 

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The 5 Best Carbs That Will Uncover Your Abs

Many of us have been taught (incorrectly) that carbs and abs don’t have anything in common, and that they are actually enemies!  Wrong!  Our bodies need carbs to function optimally, but of course, not all carbs are made equally.   Keep reading the list below to find out which carbs are best for you and your abs!

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Cold Potatoes

Think potato salad straight from the fridge– the cold temperatures transform the potatoes’ digestible starches to resistant starches, which means they’re harder to digest.  Why do you want to eat something harder to digest?  Because while your body is working to break down those resistant starches, you’re also burning fat!  More of that, please!

 

Apples

Seems simple (and it isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when we think of carbs), but it’s true– the carbs in apples are minimal and healthy, and come packed with tons of other benefits!  With one apple, you’ll be getting a healthy dose of carbohydrates while also taking in a great dose of dietary fiber.  Add in the fact that apples contain flavenoids that help to burn fat, and you’ll want to make this fruit your go-to snack!

 

Quinoa

The most protein-packed grain out there, quinoa also packs a dose of heart-healthy fats!  Add the fiber and B vitamins that come naturally in quinoa, and you’re looking at one of the healthiest carbohydrates out there! The great news about quinoa is that it’s incredibly versatile, too, so it can be used as a breakfast cereal-type grain, a rice replacement, or even a salad topping!

 

Legumes

Think lentils, beans, peas, and chickpeas– all of these are basically superfoods, and make a great carbohydrate option because they also come packed with lots of fiber and protein!  They’re also known to help lower LDL cholestoerol (that’s the bad one!), and are shown in studies to aid in weight loss!

 

Whole Grain Pasta

Once you’ve got the toppings on your pasta, you won’t even notice the difference between this and regular pasta, but your body will thank you!  Whole grain pasta hasn’t been stripped of it’s natural nutrients the way refined pasta has been, and it won’t have as much sugar, either!  Toss in the fact that there are whole grain pastas made from all types of grains, and you’re moving into exciting opportunities to experiment with new ingredients and recipes to find something you love!

 

Which of these carbs are you going to put on your shopping list for your next grocery run?

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What Celebrities Put In Their Water

We all know that celebrities have it made when it comes to health and fitness– they have the money and the connections to access the priciest treatments, personal trainers, nutritionists, personal chefs, and even ingredients!  While they don’t always live the healthiest habits, they do tend to know some great tips and tricks for staying slim, energized, and strong.  On top of that, they tend to know that one of the keys to the body and health that they want is to stay hydrated!  Plain old water can get boring sometimes, but there are some amazingly creative ways to dress it up in a healthy way1 Keep reading below to see what ingredients celebrities put in their water, and snag some tips for yourself!

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The Classic

You’ve probably seen a ton of photos on instagram of water with cucumber, lemons, and some type of herb (mint, usually).  Pretty and all, but what good can it do you?  Khloe Kardashian and Heidi Klum swear by this mix!

 

The Creative

Lauren Conrad is known for her start in reality tv, which she used to then launch a successful lifestyle blogging and fashion career.  Her go-to mixes for delicious water?  Orange with lemon and lime, lemon with raspberry and mint, and blackberry with cherry and lime!

 

The Common

We’ve all heard that warm water with lemon is a great way to kick-start our metabolisms and fat-burning processes each morning.  Miranda Kerr, Victoria’s Secret Angel, takes this tip to heart and has a healthy dose of warm water mixed with lemon juice every morning before her protein shake and breakfast.

 

So whether it means adding fruit and herbs or changing the temperature, there are tons of ways to change up your 8 daily glasses of water.  Making sure you’re getting enough water each day is a top tip to looking and feeling your best, from your metabolism to your skin to your athletic performance!

 

Which of these healthy waters are you going to try first?

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Top 10 Foods That Put You In A Bad Mood

 

Many things can affect our moods in positive or negative ways, but few things are as powerful as the food we eat!  Just think how irritable you feel when you’re really hungry, or how happy you feel after you’ve eaten your favorite healthy lunch!  We know that some foods are mood-boosters, and you know what that means:  some foods can put you in a bad mood, too!  Keep reading the list below to find out which bad-mood foods you should be avoiding!

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Baked Goods

Packed full of sugar and saturated oils, these guys often leave us feeling lethargic, tired, or depressed (not to mention the guilt onset after throwing back multiple brownies or cookies!), so opt for healthier snack or dessert options instead of passing by the bakery!

 

French Fries

The perfect storm of high fat, sodium, and refined carb content, french fries are a common craving (and a common side dish, too!) that can put us in a funk.  The reason?  The cause our energy to peak (very fun), and then suddenly drop (not fun at all), which makes us feel sluggish and tired.  Opt for a baked potato or a side salad at lunch instead of french fries!

 

Alcohol

The fact that it’s labeled a “depressant” says it all– while consuming it can bring us a short period of happiness and giggles, it ends in a mood drop, and that’s not even mentioning the potential hangover and dehydration!  Make sure to drink at least one glass of water between each drink (more is ideal!) and drink on a full stomach and in moderation!

 

Soda

You alread know it’s basically poison!  But did you know that the intense sugar rush we feel from drinking a soda also ends in an abrupt crash just a few minutes after we finish drinking it?  Not to mention the cancer-causing ingredients they can contain and the bloat they often cause, this reason alone is enough to swear off sodas!  Try flavored waters, fresh juice, or a chocolate milk if you’re really craving something besides plain old H2O.

 

Lunch Meat

Processed meat for sandwiches or hotdogs is full of nitrates, food colorants, and lots of other nasty additives and preservatives, which can cause bloating, mood swings, water retention, and even headaches!  Steer clear of the deli at lunch time and keep your mind and body happy for the rest of the afternoon!

 

Margarine

The high amount of processed fats in margarine can cause a blood sugar imbalance, which can lead to mood swings and weight gain!  Don’t let this sneaky food onto your plate– if you think it’s butter but you’re not sure, ask!  And clear it out of your fridge and try an organic butter instead of margarine for cooking at home!

 

Canned Food

You might think these are healthy options for cooking at home since they’re usually legumes or vegetables, but you haev to watch the sodium content on the can’s label!  You also need to check and see if the can is labeled “BPA-Free”, as the chemical BPA has been linked to chronic mood disorders (among other nasty side effects)!

 

Potato Chips

So tempting, but so terrible!  These guys are usually fried in vegetable oil, meaning they’re packed with saturated fats.  These fats work against the good-guy Omega 3 fatty acids that we’re so intent on adding to our diets!  Don’t let your small potato chip snack undo all the good fats you got from that avocado and olive oil in your salad at lunch!  These guys can cause inflammation and even mood swings due to the damage they do to the balance of healthy fats in your diet!

Processed Foods

If it comes in an individual wrapper inside a box, you can pretty much bet it’s processed.  These foods are often high in refined sugar content, as well as saturated fats and all types of preservatives, additives, and colorants.  That means you’re in for a wild blood sugar ride as the sugar hypes you up and then crashed you back to the ground, which negatively affects your mood!  Opt for a piece of fruit, some crackers and cheese, or a few veggies with hummus if you’re feeling hungry for a snack during the day!

Packaged Seeds

If the seeds you’re buying have been processed in any way, there’s a good chance they’re coated in a preservative called potassium bromate.  This chemical can interfere with your thyroid’s ability to absorb iodine.  When your thyroid is out of whack, your mood might be, too.  One of the first thing doctors check in patients with depression is their thyroid levels!  Try purchasing organic seeds that haven’t been processed with any chemicals if you’re looking to enjoy the benefits that seeds and nuts bring to a healthy diet!

 

Are you surprised that these foods made the list?  Are there any of these foods that you need to clean out of your cabinet?  Let me know in the comments section!

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Top 10 Foods to Get You Bikini Ready!

So it’s almost swimsuit season and you’ve been hitting the gym and working your diet since January, right?  Great.  Now see what foods to add to your diet to make sure you’re ready to show off your new bikini this summer!  Keep reading to find out which foods are the best to help you get ready for swimsuit season!

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Beets

Find out which foods you should be including in your diet to improve brain function!

Did you know that beets work as a natural detoxifier?  Skip the juice cleanse and avoid going hungry while still filtering out all the nasty stuff that accumulates in our bodies over time.  Beets are relatively cheap, easy to repair, and great for tossing in salads or smoothies!

 

Eggs

With a complete amino acid profile, eggs make for the perfect lean protein dose at any time of day.  They’re great in the morning, post workout, at lunch, or as a snack!  On top of that, they’re one of the best sources of choline, which will help your body burn more fat!

 

Green Tea

It sounds like a lot, but it’s definitely do-able:  4-5 cups of green tea each day will give you the needed catechins (fat-blasting antioxidants) to clear the fat out of your fat cells– especially in the tummy region!  Try replacing your coffee habit with green tea.  Drink it hot or cold, just make sure you’re adding this to your bikini diet!

 

Mustard

If you are going to have a sandwich or a burger, leave off the other condiments (mayonnaise and ketchup can be packed with fat or sugar) and opt for mustard.  Why? The capsacin contained in mustard can boost your body’s fat-burning function for hours after you consume it!

Dark Chocolate

You may have given up high calorie desserts in your quest for a bikini body, but you don’t have to give up chocolate!  Dark chocolate (think 70% cacao or greater) is important for a healthy gut, and it’s great at reducing inflammation!  Keep some in your fridge and make sure you eat a few small squares each day- use it as dessert or a treat after having gone to the gym!

 

Cilantro

Get ready to hear something wild:  the unique blend of oils found in cilantro can help push heavy metals from our bodies that often get stored in our fat cells.  That’s not so wild, right?  WRONG!  Having these heavy metals stored in our fat cells often contributes to our muscles and other tissues not healing or maintaining themselves correctly, and this aggravates the appearance of cellulite. So adding cilantro to your dishes can help you to purge those heavy metals out of your cells, which will help your tissues to repair themselves properly and thus lessen the appearance of cellulite!

 

Lentils

These little guys are a cheap and versatile way to get tons of protein in while keeping fat calories to a bare minimum!  A cup of lentils has three times the protein of a single egg, and only one gram of fat!  Try a lentil soup, lentil burgers, or lentils as a side dish.  Toss them on salads or in chili, too!

 

Raspberries

Besides being delicious, these little guys are great at reducing inflammation and increasing blood flow to your muscles, which helps them in the repair process after an intense workout!  Toss them in smoothies or in yogurt or just eat them plain!

Freshly Ground Pepper

It sounds too simple to be true, but it is!  Freshly ground pepper (not that powdery stuff– get a grinder!) contains piperine, which is a compound that helps stop the formation of new fat cells.  Sprinkle this stuff on everything!

 

Bananas

This fruit is packed with Potassium, which helps the body flush out excess water and sodium- two common culprits of a bloated appearance.  Keep your potassium levels high to keep your tummy looking flat!

 

What are your go-to foods when you’re trying to get bikini-ready?

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10 Best Protein Food Sources

We all know that protein is a key part of our diets, but do you know the best places to find protein?  Meat comes to mind of course, and it definitely makes this top 10 list, but there are many other great protein sources that might surprise you!  See what other protein sources make this list and try working them into your diet!

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Eggs

These babies have 6 grams of protein each, and they come with a healthy dose of choline and the most perfect amino acid profile we could ever ask for!  Not to mention that on the protein scale, they’re fairly cheap (and very versatile)– Eggs should definitely be on your list of protein sources for a healthy diet!

 

Spinach

Popeye wasn’t lying, guys.  Spinach is a great source of protein– A cup of spinach has half the calories of a boiled egg and almost the same amount of protein!  Whether you like it cooked or fresh, spinach can definitely find a place on your plate, as it’s versatile, easy to pair with other meals, and not nearly as expensive or difficult to find as some other trendy greens.

Peas

Wanna get even more protein in a cup of greens? Go with green peas!  One cup of these has almost 9 times more protein than the amount of protein in a cup of spinach!  Can you believe it?  Great as a side dish or tossed into a salad, these guys need to make an appearance every now and then in your protein-packed diet.

 

Beans

Let’s take a moment and be thankful that there’s such a variety of beans out there, because it’s a food we should be trying to eat every day!  A great source of fiber and protein, beans help us to feel fuller for longer, so eat them as a main dish or toss them into beans, soups, rice, or wraps and salads whenever you can!

 

Lentils

Get ready for this:  One cup of lentils has more protein than 3 eggs, and only 1 gram of fat.  Whaaat?  Lentils are great additions to soups and chilis, and stand alone as a great stew or side dish, too.  Not only that, they can also be used to make veggie meatballs or burgers.  Cheap? Yes. Versatile? Very.  Put these on your grocery list!

 

Halibut

A super lean fish that cooks up firm, this whitefish has all the benefits that come with eating fish (healthy fats, choline, etc.) and includes a hefty dose of protein.  Give yourself a break from salmon and tuna and try some halibut filets!

 

Pork

Did you know that pork and beef are head-to-head for the amount of protein they contain?  It’s easy to believe the false information that red meat has the most protein per serving, but it’s simply not true!  Not only that, but pork has some great benefits as well– pig farms are less damaging to the environment, and white meat poses a lower risk of breast cancer for women.  Try a tenderloin cut if you like your pork to have the texture of beef steaks!

Turkey Breast

Lean and packed with protein, turkey breast is a versatile ingredient to toss into salads or wraps, use in sandwiches, or eat all by itself!  Turkey actually packs more protein than chicken, so consider that when grocery shopping prior to your weekly meal prepping session!

 

Greek Yogurt

Specifically the 2% variety– 7 ounces contains 20 grams of protein!  Isn’t that wild?  It’s great for a snack, post-workout fuel or for getting your day started at breakfast time!

 

Low Fat Cottage Cheese

A diet food of the past, cottage cheese deserves a comeback.  At 15 grams for a half-cup, this is a great source of protein.  Eat it at breakfast with fruit or at lunch on top of a salad to get a great dose of protein!

 

What are your go-to foods for protein?

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10 Healthiest Foods on the Planet

There’s healthy food, and there’s SUPER healthy food.  We know that it’s important to cut out unhealthy foods from our diets, but recent research shows that it’s even MORE important to incorporate healthy foods into our diets.  Check out this Top 10 Healthiest Foods list before you make your next grocery list!

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Spinach

This super food contains antioxidants, proteins, and vitamins A and C.  Throw it into a salad, pasta, or anywhere where you might normally use lettuce (think sandwiches and wraps, tacos, and more).  It IS a member of the dirty dozen, though, so make sure you’re buying organic spinach!

 

Broccoli

Proven to prevent breast, lung, and prostate cancer, this cruciferous veggie also packs in Vitamin C and fights the storage of new fat.  Add it to salads, cook it in soup, or roast it with other veggies as a side dish!

 

Berries

Packed with polyphenols, most berries have the power to fight fat and they all come with a huge dose of antioxidants!  Easy to add to breakfast dishes, smoothies, and snacks, berries are a great way to boost your diet’s nutrient profile!

 

Wild Salmon

Make sure your salmon is wild (Atlantic salmon is NOT wild) because farmed salmon is actually terrible for you!  Wild salmon, though, has a great dose of healthy fats that will help your body burn fat more efficiently!

 

Eggs

They’re fairly cheap and have the perfect amino acid profile, so eggs should definitely be in your diet.  They’re a great source of protein and choline!  Add them to salads or sandwiches, make omelettes, and hard boil them for a quick snack!

 

Lentils

Guess what?  One cup of lentils gets you the protein equivalent of 3 whole eggs, but with only a single gram of fat!  They’re also high in fiber, meaning you’ll stay fuller for longer after eating them!

 

Olive Oil

Loaded with antioxidants that can help fight off osteoporosis, cancer, and brain deterioration, Extra Virgin Olive Oil can also boost serotonin levels in the blood, which can help you feel fuller after eating!

 

Tumeric

This humble spice has been shown to help combat brain disease and fight inflammation.  Whether you try it in golden milk, a curry, or a stirfry, make sure you’re including this super food in your diet!

 

Onions

Working on a heart-healthy diet?  You need to eat onions!  They help to regulate glucose levels and burn fat, and they’re easy to throw into just about everything!

 

English Peas

With almost 8 times the amount of protein of spinach, and with an entire day’s worth of Vitamin C, a cup of English peas is a simple superfood to incorporate into your salads or eat as a side dish!

 

What other super foods do you like to incorporate into your diet?

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10 ”Health” Foods to Stop Eating

It’s easy to be tempted into buying health food, especially when it looks like a more wholesome version of foods we love but have to avoid for dietary reasons.  But many of the foods that come with some type of healthy classification AREN’T really healthy!  Find out which 10 ”Health” Foods to mark off your shopping list below!

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Granola

“Noooo, not granola!” you say, but it’s true– granola looks like a fancy health food and it’s not!  One cup of granola can have around 500 calories in it!  Not to mention it’s usually packed with sugar and fat.  Opt for oatmeal instead and save yourself some calories!

100-Calorie Snack Packs

These are tricky little guys because 100 calories sounds like a great tradeoff for a few moments of sweet bliss, chocolate chips, and the convenience of having it already packaged for you.  But the truth?  It’s all processed food that contains sugars, fats, and sodium that you don’t need.  Make your own pack-ahead snacks to save yourself the money, the frustration, and the yucky ingredients.

 

Gluten-Free Products

While some people legitimately cannot eat gluten, most of us can.  But somewhere over the last few years, gluten became a huge villain, and otherwise healthy people started kicking it out of their diets left and right!  That’s how the gluten-free industry which was born, and for Celiac’s sufferers, it’s been great.  But it’s important to know that just because something is labeled gluten-free doesn’t automatically make it healthy, organic, or low in fats.  Read up on how to understand food labels to help make better decisions when cruising the supermarket!

 

“Healthy” Frozen Dinners

The frozen dinner aisle runs the gamut from healthy to disastrous in terms of marketing, but all of it is unhealthy.  Even if it’s low-fat, it’s probably packed with sodium and sugar to improve the taste.  Your best bet is to meal prep each week to always have something convenient to eat at home.  Even if you’re not into meal prepping, just making double the batch of foods that you do like will give you some healthy leftovers to save for the week or freeze for later.

 

Fruit Cocktail Preserves

 

Whether in a can or a box, fruit cocktail should really just be called “fruit in high fructose corn syrup” because that’s what it really is.  Gross.  Opt for frozen or fresh fruits and make a fruit salad in your own kitchen!

 

Rice Cakes (and other rice-based snacks)

These were all the rage for dieters 20 years ago, but times have changed, friends.  Rice cakes rank pretty high in the glycemic index, meaning that while they’re low in calories and perfect for adding toppings to, they don’t have any lasting power in your body (you’ll be hungry soon after eating them), and on top of that, they spike your blood pressure!  Not ideal at all.

Salads from Fast Food Joints

While not technically on the health food aisle, they are marketed as a health food.  The thing is that in some cases, you’re better off getting the burger than the salad in terms of calorie counts and protein content.  If you really need a burger, go for it (sans combo, of course) and get back to healthy eating at the next meal.  Don’t get a daily salad at a fast food joint and fall for the idea that you’re doing yourself a favor, though!

Canned Soup

Not all soup is bad, but canned soups (which are often sold as healthy diet options) are sodium bombs!  Not only that but many of them are highly processed with lots of preservatives.  Make big batches of your favorite soups and freeze servings for later instead of relying on these canned soups– they’re often packed with salt and sugar to make  up for the taste.

Baked Vegetable Chips

The truth is that even though they sound pretty healthy, they’re usually still high in fats, oil, and salt.  Opt for chopped veggies instead– dip them in hummus or guacamole for more flavor if you miss the flavors from chips.

Most ”Light” and ”Low-Fat” Options

It feels good to know you’re buying a product with fewer calories or fat grams, but the truth is that you’re often paying it back in sodium or sugars to make up for the taste.  Don’t fall for the trap that you can eat more mayonnaise or salad dressing or coffee creamer or what have you simply because it says ”low-fat”.  It might indeed be low fat but it’s probably high in sugar or salt, and that doesn’t do you any good, either.

 

Did any of the foods on this list surprise you?  The marketing tactics to get them to sell aim them specifically at those of us trying to be healthy, which is especially dirty!  Make sure you’re prepared to read labels next time you go shopping!

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The Top 10 Most Unhealthy Foods

There are plenty of unhealthy foods filling the aisles of our supermarkets, but some of them are worse than others. Find out which foods make my Top 10 Most Unhealthy Foods list!

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#1- Microwave Popcorn

Microwave popcorn is packed with transfats, which are bad for your heart!  On top of that, when they come with butter flavor, that flavoring usually includes Diacetyl, a chemical that can break down the layer of cells that protects out brains!

The good news is that you don’t have to give up popcorn completely.  Make it at home on the stove top with olive oil, or popped in an air popper– you can add your own toppings for flavor while knowing exactly what ingredients are going into your body!

 

#2- Chicken Nuggets

Even those made with organic or hormone-free chicken aren’t free from dangerous ingredients.  Diglycerides, Carrageenan, and the colorant red #40 are all common ingredients in chicken nuggets, even those that you buy from the deli counter at your supermarket!  They help to preserve the nuggets and to give them the right color.  Not good.

Instead, try making your own chicken nuggets at home!  Use organic chicken breast dipped in egg and flour with seasonings.  Bake them in the oven and you’re done! It’s an easy meal to make in batches (you can freeze them!) so consider prepping several servings ahead of time to make it easier to eat this healthy version!

 

#3- Cereal

Specifically we’re talking about the sugar-packed cereals that so many of us adored as kids.   Besides just the refined carbs and huge amounts of unhealthy sugar present in these cereals, many of the biggest and most popular brands contain even more dangerout ingredients:  BHT and BHA, which are illegal in New Zealand, Australia, Japan, and most of Europe.

Make sure you’re checking the labels of any cereal you buy carefully, or alternatively, give up cereal altogether for more healthy options like oatmeal!

 

#4- Processed Meats

Ham, lunch meat, processed bacon, hotdogs– These are common food items in most families, but they probably shouldn’t be.  Many processed meats contain nitrates, which block the body’s ability to process sugar properly (which is a risk factor for diabetes).  Most processed meats are also extremely high in sodium, which is an area that most of us already need to make some cuts.

When shopping for meat items, especially lunch meats, look for items that are nitrate-free or low sodium.  Additionally, try buying larger cuts of meat that can be prepped in a slow cooker for use in the place of sandwich or breakfast meats.

 

#5- Energy Drinks

These guys pack huge doses of caffeine, and are also notorious for containing large amounts of sucrose and glucose.  These drinks have been proven to be 11% more corrosive to your teeth than a regular soda!  Some energy drinks are even packaged to be healthy, but it’s important to note that they’re often even worse in sugar and chemical content than most sodas.

Opt for an organic juice, tea, or coffee if you’ve got a craving for a perky drink!

 

#6- Farmed Salmon

You know that salmon is a superfood that brings tons of health benefits to the table, but it’s a very specific kind of salmon that you want to eat– farmed salmon is NOT the one you’re looking for.  Farmed salmon comes from the Atlantic (there are no wild salmon in the atlantic so don’t let labels fool you!) and is packed full of Omega 6s, which cause inflammation.  Farmed salmon are usually dyed pink and can also contain large amounts of cancer-causing PCBs, and they’re low in vitamin D, compared to their wild-caught cousins.

 

#7- Canned Soup

While soup can seem innocent enough, and appeal to anyone on a budget, canned soups often contain Monosodium Glutamate (MSG), which increases your appetite while you eat and also can cause migraines!  On top of that, most canned soups are actually sodium bombs, which is something we all need to avoid.

Try making a big batch of soup and freezing it into small portions.  Do this with a few types of soup that you like and soon enough you’ll be able to go to the freezer for a single serving of whatever soup you like without all of the prep work!

#8- Macaroni and Cheese

In theory, eating pasta with cheese is fine, but you need to make it yourself.  The color of the cheese mix in the boxed mac and cheese from the supermarket aren’t naturally ocurring colors– they’re from yellow 5 and 6 dyes!  These dyes are suspected of causing attention deficit issues in children (the biggest fans ever of mac and cheese, right?), and they’ve been found to cause cancer in animals.  Many of those dyes are used for heavy industrial purposes too, such as coating floors or in lice-killing shampoo.  Not something we want to consume, right?

Instead, buy an organic brand that doesn’t includ any colorants, or make it yourself from your own pasta and cheese at home!

 

#9- Soy Veggie Burgers

You might think you’re being healthy by skipping the meat and eating a soy product, but NOPE.  Most soy burgers are made of genetically modified soy produced in China, and they’re treated with an explosive chemical called hexane.  No thanks.

Instead, try making your own burgers out of quinoa, black beans, or other grains or veggies.  There are tons of options out there to suit whatever ingredient calls your name.

 

#10- Cheetos

While plenty of chips qualify for this list, cheetos are a special type of villain in the chip world.  Besides containt artificial coloring and MSG, they are literally engineered to make you overeat!  The satisfying crunch they produce while being eaten has been proven to have a psychological effect on our brains that causes us to find them more delicious than they actually are.  The texture they have that tends to melt in your mouth also plays a trick on our brains– it makes us think we haven’t eaten as much as we really have.  Cheetos are a recipe for diet disaster and should be avoided.

Instead, have some cheese with crackers– you’ll get the cheese flavor AND a satisfying crunch, if those are the things you’re craving!

 

Are any of these unhealthy foods on your shopping list?

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Avoados and Weight Loss– What’s the Connection?

We all know that avocado is a delicious superfood that’s gained quite a bit of popularity over the last few years, but do you know why?  They’re great for weight loss!  While they have fat and a fairly high calorie count for a fruit, they’re a great food to add to your diet, especially if you’re trying to lose weight!  Keep reading to learn why!

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Avocados have been found to lower LDL cholesterol (that’s the bad one!), because it’s high in monounsaturated fat (the good kind!).  High LDL cholesterol is a factor in insulin resistance, excess weight, and obesity.  Kill all those birds with the same stone by adding avocados to your daily diet!

 

Avocado oil, which has a slightly nutty flavor, has a higher smoke point than olive oil but has almost the exact same nutritional profile!  Making this switch will help you to eat more monounsaturated fats, and it’s  been found that diets packed with monounsaturated fats actually prevent fat distribution around the belly area by regulating the expression of certain fat genes!

 

If you’re eating lots of veggies but not enough monunsaturated fats with them, you won’t be able to absorb all of the caratenoids (disease-fighting compounds) that veggies can contribute to your diet!  By adding olive oil and especially avocado or avocado oil, you’ll be making the right combination to help your body take full advantage of all of the other nutrients on your plate, too!

 

Avocado has also been labeled as a hunger-killer– just half of an avocado added to your lunch will make your 40% less likely to have the munchies a few hours later.  The satiety that avocados offer comes from their creamy texture, their healthy fats, and their great combo of vitamins and nutrients.  Make sure you’re popping an avocado half in your lunch each day to keep yourself from mindless snacking or overeating in the afternoons!

 

So, if you’re looking to lower your bad cholesterol, turn off your body’s fat genes, and knock off bad snacking habits, avocados have got your back!  Try adding them on top of toast, in salads, or even by themselves!  They’re easy to pack as they come in their own skin, and they’re easy to add to hummus or make guacamole with.  Because it’s such a popular superfood right now, there’s no shortage to the recipes out there on how to add it to your diet in a variety of ways, so no excuses!

 

How do you like to eat your avocados?

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