ARTICLE: “10 Processed Foods to Ditch” + MY TAKE

I discovered an article on Yahoo’s “Health” section entitled “10 Processed Foods to Ditch Right Now.”

Being that avoiding processed foods in their entirety is a tenant of the Paleo Diet — this article intrigued me, and I feel I may be able to offer some healthy alternatives to popular processed food choices.

1) Soda.

sodaSoda equals sugar and chemicals. There is nothing whatsoever “good” about soda.

I once heard that Coke can actually be used to clean a toilet! And we are putting this into our bodies!

Instead: Try water! It is hydrating and nourising and GREAT for your body. Don’t like the taste? Make your own vitamin water at home!

vitamin water

2) Yogurt.

yogurtA tiny container of yogurt can contain the amount of sugar recommended for most women for an entire day!

People naturally believe yogurt is “a health food” — and it can be, but flavored yogurt is basically pure sugar.

Instead: Try a plain, Greek yogurt. Eat it with fresh fruit for added natural sweetness.

greek yogurt3) Cookies with added fiber.

cookiesFirst of all — cookies and other treats should be considered what they are — treats.

They should be enjoyed in extreme moderation.

Not to mention — traditional cookies and cakes cannot be enjoyed on the Paleo Diet because they contain grains.

They cannot be enjoyed by the gluten free because they contain gluten.

They cannot be enjoyed by those who are low-carb or diabetic, because they contain sugar.

I would advise really thinking about it before getting calories from cookies or other sweets.

There are plenty of other foods that offer fiber and other nutrients for good health.

Instead: Think about whether you really NEED a treat and why. If so, try to make a healthy choice. Ideas: veggies with hummus or a nut butter, fruit with Greek yogurt and/or nut butter, a Paleo treat, some homemade Paleo granola.

veggies with hummus4) Fat-free potato chips.

fat free priglesIf you’ve ever tried fat-free chips — you’ll probably never try them again.

The chips contain a chemical called Olestra — which can lead to digestive upset and diarrhea.

They are also low in fiber — so they won’t fill you up.

Article recommends: Popcorn.

Instead: The same thing can apply for chips as for cookies — both are snack foods and don’t offer much nutritional value.

Think about whether you really NEED a treat and why. If so, try to make a healthy choice. Ideas: veggies with hummus or a nut butter, fruit with Greek yogurt and/or nut butter, a Paleo treat, some homemade Paleo granola.

paleo granola5) Diet soda.

diet sodaAs I said earlier in this post — avoid soda at all costs.

It is chemicals and sugar — and can impact your digestion, sleep, energy, tooth enamel, etc. etc. etc.

I would imagine Diet soda is worse than regular soda — because the calories drop, so chemicals must be added to enhance the soda’s flavor.

Article recommends: Flavored selzer water or cucumber water.

Instead: Make your own vitamin water using fresh fruit and veggies to give your plain water a boost. Carry it with you in a water bottle, and sip on it throughout the day.

cuc water6) Instant Oatmeal.

oatmealThe article says because oatmeal is processed — it has a high-glycemic index, which basically means you won’t stay full.

Not to mention, oatmeal contains oats — so it’s a no-go on the Paleo Diet.

Article recommends: Steel-cut oats, which have a longer cooking time, are less processed and have a lower glycemic index.

Instead: How about some EGGS AND BACON for breakfast? It seems people are so afraid that eating a greasy breakfast is going to make them fat — when likely, it’s the low-fat whatever they are eating that’s impeding their weight loss.

If you can’t do the eggs and bacon, try a salad — or eggs with sausage, such as a flavored chicken sausage.

eggs and bacon7) Egg white substitutes.egg beatersObviously, anything that is a substitute for something isn’t the real thing.

These are manufactured eggs that contain ingredients like color and a sweetener used in candy.

Why ditch the real thing for a Frankenfood?

Article recommends: Have a breakfast in which you consume the whole egg on a toasted whole wheat English muffin.

Instead: NO ONE should be afraid to eat eggs. You are not going to get fat if you eat eggs — even if you eat them every day! They are filled with protein and are meant to give you energy for the day and fill you up. Eggs are a very important component to a healthy meal — just be careful you’re not doubling up on proteins too much.

eggs8) Bottled sauces and dressings.

dressingMany of the condiments out there today have added sugar — and if you really take a close look at the label — chances are there are a lot of unpronounceable ingredients.

That’s so that stores can keep them on the shelf for a long period of time, and so that you can keep them in your fridge.

Article recommends: Using a dry rub when cooking meat — vs. slathering it with processed sauces.

Instead: It is SO EASY to make your own salad dressing at home! All you need is the ingredients, and a blender or food processor.

OR — keep things simple, and toss your salad with a little olive oil and some seasonings.

homemade dressing9) Sugar-free bars

barsI think most bars in general should be avoided.

Sugar-free bars are filled with artificial sweetners that can cause digestive distress.

Plus, sugar substitutes can make your body expect calories — but when it doesn’t get them — you end up a lot hungrier.

Additionally — many of these bars are packed with calories — a lot of calories for not a lot of return.

Article recommends: Choosing bars naturally low in sugar, and with less than five ingredients.

Instead: Try to get your calories from meals. If you’re not getting full and satisfied from your meals — adjust the meals until you are able to achieve satisfaction and fullness.

If you need a snack — try making a better choice, such as Paleo granola/trail mix, Greek yogurt, fruit, healthy smoothies, etc.

smoothie10) Multigrain tortilla chips

chipsTortilla chips are high in calories and fat — and low in fiber, so this snack will not fill you up.

And — it’s easy to start eating chips and suddenly — an entire bag is gone!

Article recommends: Spreading guac. or hummus on crackers, instead of chips.

Instead: Because chips and crackers are not allowed on the Paleo Diet — instead, try snacking on some vegetables dipped in guac. or dipped in nut butters. OR — make some kale chips by cutting up kale and roasting it in oil for about 15 minutes.

kale chipsCLICK HERE to read the article at Yahoo.com.

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