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03/28/15

Healthy concerns: Why some foods find themselves pretending to be good for you

For the most part, you pretty much can tell the good from the bad as it relates to food and drinks. More specifically, spotting healthy foods versus the ones that aren't so good for you should be fairly simple on the surface.
If you're trying to lose weight and eat better, you realize that eating grilled chicken, salmon along with vegetables is much more prudent than the cheeseburger, French fries and sugary soft drink in the grand scheme of trying to clean up your diet.
Where most people find themselves lagging, at no fault of their own typically, is making the decision on what can only be described as a borderline food. Plenty of snacks, meals and others of that ilk masquerade or are dubbed as "healthy" when in actuality they're not that at all; not even close.
A big part of the confusion comes how the foods are marketed, whether advertisers and manufacturers convince themselves that a food that contains "no trans fat" is perfectly acceptable even though the sugar content is triple the serving on a case of soda.
Those who are struggling with eating correctly or are on the ill conceived diet want desperately to find food that tastes good and can still enjoy so are more apt to buy into the hype of great tasting food that promises to be healthy but isn't.

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Take popcorn, for instance. Most see this food as harmless, if not actually a healthy alternative. Phrases like "air popped" and "fat free" come to mind as being tossed around on packaging and ads. Unfortunately, most popcorn is riddled with fat because the average consumer buys the butter flavored variety, rather than the aforementioned air popped version.
Another food that is guilty of being terribly unhealthy even though you might think otherwise is luncheon meats, such as turkey breast and ham. These sandwich favorites carry with them a slew of preservatives but also are high in sodium, so you might want to consider finding ones that are aptly titled "low sodium" but also be concerned the lack of sodium doesn't mean more trans fat, too. The meats also have nitrates as the main culprit of not only making you feel overly full but also can raise your cholesterol number more than you'll assume.
The propensity to search out foods that don't taste like cardboard, while still adhering to your healthy eating plan, certainly makes sense. What is a bit of a head scratching proposition is being fooled by foods that say one thing, that they're healthy, yet are nowhere near being a solid eating option.

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