You might be surprised at some of the offenders we’ve collated – after all, their marketers are masters of deception. Here are 3 foods to watch out for, plus a few fun ideas for what to eat instead.
You probably know that eating too much sugar is bad for you – from increasing your risk for type 2 diabetes and obesity to promoting poor mental health – but there are a number of other foods out there that often fly under the radar. Some of them are laden with added sugar despite appearing to be a “health” food, while others are firmly in the savoury camp, yet still do a number on our gut. Here are the 4 foods to look out for if you’re keen to avoid inflammation – and, considering the effects it has on our immune system, brain and gut, it’s worth steering clear of the foods that stoke the flames!
While you might be able to find some processed cereals that are on the healthier side, many of the options lining the supermarket shelves are deceptively sugary. They may feature labels like “healthy” and “all-natural” but the ingredients list tells a different story. You’re likely to find preservatives, added sugar and colours. These ingredients can disrupt the balance of good bacteria in our gut, leading to inflammation and other health issues like low mood and fatigue. If you’re keen to enjoy a convenient brekkie, try making your own cereal. Here are a few ideas for ingredients:
- Coconut shavings
- Whole fruit
Really you can’t go wrong, just add any whole foods you like and there you have your own homemade, healthy cereal.
Ultra-processed baked goods
While home baking can be a fun, tasty and even nutritious event, store-bought baked goods are another ballgame – especially cakes, cookies and muffins. These mass-produced items from your local supermarket are bursting with inflammatory ingredients, from the excess sugar to preservatives and trans fats. These foods will leave you feeling sluggish, low in energy and might even cause wind and constipation. Nothing fun about that! You might want to stick to enjoying your own homemade baked goods – we’ve got a few for you to try:
Hydrogenated vegetable oils are loaded with inflammatory compounds, not to mention the toxins they release when heated. One of the major issues is the fact that these oils are so widespread – particularly in some of our favourite processed snacks like chips, frozen wedges, premade meals and sauces.
They may seem highly convenient and affordable, but the cost to your health is great. These types of foods are also often loaded with excess salt which can result in fluid retention and poor circulation, along with added sugar and preservatives that can leave our gut feeling worse for wear. These ingredients also promote the growth of bad bacteria, leading to poor digestion and weakened immunity. Looking for an alternative? Use ghee, extra-virgin olive oil or hemp oil – but be cautious not to heat the latter two, particularly hemp oil. If you’re looking for an alternative to chips or fried foods, try baking your food of choice in a bit of ghee. For instance, you could whip up some roast chickpeas or beans in the oven with spices like paprika and cinnamon.
Need a hand getting your lifestyle goals on track? Whether you’re looking to eat healthier or fight off a sugar addiction, we’re here to help. Join us for the 8-Week Program and we’ll help you change the way you look at food – and that doesn’t mean you have to follow restrictive diets or miss out on your favourite foods; we believe you can still enjoy delicious food without jeopardising your health. With celebrity chef Sarah Glover on our panel of experts, you’ll have an array of fun recipes at your fingertips, along with our own exclusive armoury of simple, tasty and healthy recipes for everything from daily meals to impressive entertaining. We know it can be hard to stick to your health goals – especially when you’re trying to manage it alone. When you sign up with us, you’ll have access to clear-cut meal plans, community support and exclusive access to our sugar-free content. Here’s what’s on offer:
- 8 weeks of meal plans and shopping lists.
- 90+ member-only recipes.
- Community forums to share your journey.
- Support and guidance from the I Quit Sugar team.
- Exclusive content from our panel of experts.
So, if you’re ready to ditch sugar and the host of maladies that come with it, it’s not too late to join. We’d love to help you get started on your health journey. Sign up HERE today!