I discovered a very interesting an informative article posted to Cracked.com entitled “20 Terrifying Facts Food Companies Don’t Want You To Know.”
I feel like this article is akin to something people on the SAD (Standard American Diet) would ignore — as it contains non-desirable facts about what we’re putting into our bodies.
I mean, think about it. The average person probably doesn’t want to know that the meat in products from Taco Bell is just over 30% actual beef — and the rest of the ingredients are pretty revolting.
But, it tastes good, it’s convenient, it’s cheap, and it requires little to no effort to obtain it.
In today’s fast-paced society, it is extremely difficult for some to make time to prepare healthy food. It is so much easier to roll through a drive-thru and stuff your face with convenient fast food on your way to completing the next task on the never-ending to-do list.
Even for myself — making time to cook and prepare healthy meals is time-consuming — and I have few responsibilities compared to most! Some days, I just don’t want to cook. But I force myself to — and I’m never upset afterwards.
With all the things that need to get done on a day-to-day basis, we should be fueling our bodies with healthy food that will help us maintain our energy levels and get through the day.
Not to mention, help keep us alive and healthy to see another day (and hopefully, many more “other days.”)
Here’s what this article (which is set up in a sort of slideshow format) had to say:
1) Most food brands and restaurants use the color red and yellow in some way, shape or form because it is an appetite stimulator. In nearly every restaurant logo — there is some red and usually, yellow (think McDonald’s, Burger King, KFC, Dairy Queen, Wendy’s, Arby’s — an exception I can think of is Culvers.)
2) You know those little packets of sugar sitting on your restaurant table? There are 22 of those packs in one 20 ounce soda. My take: If there is just ONE thing people do to put themselves on a healthy path — I would recommend dropping the soda! It is filled with sugar and chemicals and empty calories!
3) In 1999, leaders of America’s food companies met to discuss how they would tackle the growing obesity problem. The CEO of General Mills stood up and said he would not do anything that would sacrifice the taste of his products. And the obesity crisis continues. My take: Even if these food companies DID do something to make their products healthier — the products would likely be laden with chemicals that work to save the taste of the product by reducing calories, carb counts or fat grams. May as well avoid the food-like products entirely in favor of whole foods.
4) Dunkin Donuts sells 6.4 million donuts per day. 2.3 million per year. Donuts are fried sugar, topped with sugar. Nothing remotely healthy or nutritionally beneficial whatsoever. Sadly, a donut is how many choose to fuel themselves as they get their day started!
- High-carb diets promote leptin resistance
- Leptin is a hormone that signals to the brain satisfaction and fullness after eating
- When leptin is blocked through a high-carb diet — your brain is unable to realize you are full and satisfied — and you keep eating
6) 52% of Americans say figuring out HOW TO DO THEIR TAXES is easier than figuring out how to eat healthy! — A notion I happen to agree with. There are SO many “diets” and “weight loss programs” and “diet pills” and “exercise plans” out there — it can be extremely difficult for a novice to jump blindly into a program. My advice is to find something that works for you. Find a way of eating that interests you — something you can adapt for the long-term. Think of it as a lifestyle change vs. a “diet” — and then it will become a way of living, versus a means of restricting oneself to conform to a diet plan, falling off the plan and gaining the weight back.
7) Low-fat almost never means low-calorie. Instead of counting fat grams or carbs or calories — focus on eating whole foods — vegetables, fruits, good-quality meat, nuts, seeds, coconut milk — things that legitimately fuel your body. Eat until you’re full and satisfied — really listening to your body. Eat slowly and enjoy your food. Make eating an experience you enjoy and look forward to. If you eat when your hungry, choose whole food and try to move your body throughout the day, you will likely never have a weight problem. It doesn’t have to be complicated.
9) Almost 80% of food commercials aired on Saturday morning children’s shows are for junk food. So we have kids sitting on their butts in front of the television, eating junk food. And we wonder why we have an obesity problem in this country!
10) Taco Bell’s “taco meat” is just 36% beef. So what are the other ingredients?: Water, soy lecithin, an “anti-dusting” agent, and “natural smoke flavor.” I guarantee the ingredients in most fast food are non-desirable if not unpronounceable! Why have we never seen the inside of a plant that makes products for McDonald’s or Taco Bell? Because we likely don’t want to!
11) A survey has found some baby food has as much, if not more saturated fats and SUGAR as junk food. So we’re getting the next generation started in their life of sugar addiction as infants! People blame vaccinations for causing autism — and I’m not denying that’s a possibility, but what if we changed what our babies are consuming and give them a fighting chance at leading a healthy life.
12) Outback’s website says its popular appetizer, the “Blooming Onion,” has nearly 3,000 calories — more than some should consume in an entire day! If I’m going to enjoy a “Blooming Onion,” I’m going to REALLY think about it before I choose do to so. These should be enjoyed extremely sparingly — if at all. I’ve made them at home before — and they were relatively easy and hopefully at least SOMEWHAT healthier than the restaurant’s version. There are a lot of other ways I’d rather spend those 3,000 calories.
13) The average American will spend NINE YEARS watching TV — and mindlessly eating while doing so. I am one of those people — so I have taken to not allowing myself to have snacks while I’m sitting in front of the tube — especially at night. If it is in front of me, I will eat it.
14) Even at healthy buffets, you will likely overeat to get your money’s worth. I immediately giggled at the phrase “healthy buffets” because to me, it is a bit of an oxymoron! Buffets are very challenging for those following a healthy eating lifestyle. I would say they are best avoided — but if I MUST visit a buffet, I try my best to stick to the salad bar, vegetables and fruit. I never really worry about getting my money’s worth. I eat until I am full and try to make the healthiest choices I can. For many, navigating a buffet can be a very challenging task!
15) Low-sugar, low-fat and “diet” programs. I once saw a quote in the “Paleosphere:” “Whenever you see the words ‘low-fat’ — think ‘chemical shitstorm.'” When chemists in lab coats work to make a product “low-fat” or “low-anything,” they likely have to add chemicals to achieve the desired “low-fat-ness” — and then more chemicals to improve the product’s taste. Instead of eating something crafted in a lab — why not eat something that is naturally delicious and nutritious? Not to mention, the article says these “diet” products contain aspartame — a sweetener that has been proven to cause WEIGHT GAIN!
16) Brain scans have indicated our brains react to sugar the same way they react to cocaine. I.E. SUGAR can be considered an addictive drug — which I believe could serve as an explanation for the obesity crisis. We are all addicted to sugar — and it is killing us.
17) Cereal manufacturers spend twice as much on advertising as they do on ingredients. Like donuts, most cereal is sugar, covered in sugar. Not to mention, cereal contains grains, preservatives, chemicals and sometimes gluten — all things that can cause digestive distress and health issues. A better breakfast is eggs and bacon, salad, fruit, sausage, or any other REAL FOOD.
18) Applebee’s Oriental Chicken Salad has more calories than a Big Mac with a Coke. This just illustrates the importance of eating out in moderation. Even when you’re at a restaurant ordering a “healthy” meal — you have no idea what ingredients are going into that meal and how it is being prepared. At home, you can control each and every morsel that passes your lips. If you’re going to eat out — scour the menu and try to pick an item that will satisfy your dietary needs without derailing your healthy eating plan.
19) Subway’s advertised nutritional values do not include condiments, dressing or cheese. Same thing with salad. It is very important to avoid condiments! It is very easy to make your own, healthy versions of things like salad dressing and mayo at home — and then you’ll be consuming a handful of ingredients vs. a label full of ingredients.
20) Yogurt can easily disguise itself as a health food. It can be — but many of the flavored sugars have as much as twice as much sugar per serving as cereal does. After all, what do you think it is that makes yogurt sweet? Greek yogurt with honey can have more sugar per ounce than Coke. If you’re going to enjoy yogurt and can tolerate dairy — chose a plain, Greek yogurt — or if you can find it — a grass-fed yogurt.
CHECK OUT the article via Cracked.com.