As a Health Coach, I always want my clients to stay away from processed foods because of the horrible side effects that have been causing the American population much harm. Did you know there is over 3,000 food additives that are put in our foods?!?! Have you ever seen an ingredients list on asparagus or Wild Alaskan Salmon? I understand that with our busy lives, sometimes we have no choice but to succumb to frozen meals, boxed foods and On-the-Go packaged foods. With two little kids, I have to every once in a while. The real key is to know which ones are the most harmful. Rather than going in to each one, I have compiled a list of what I believe to be the 5 worst ingredients you should avoid.
1. Artificial Sweeteners
It’s odd that a Diet Soda or low fat foods can cause weight, but they do. Aspartame is my arch nemesis. This seems to be the hardest for me to get people off of. Really, any artificial sweetener can be addictive but Aspartame is by far the worst! Its sweet taste can enhance your appetite as it is a neurotoxin fooling your brain and body. Because of its unnatural structure, our bodies process it differently than natural foods. Sweeteners such as Splenda have been shown to inactivate digestive enzymes causing irritable bowel disease. Sucralose destroys up to 50% of the good gut flora in your intestinal track.
2. High-Fructose Corn Syrup
Fructose is metabolized by your liver primarily because it is the only organ that can metabolize it. If you consume high amounts of HFCS it ends up damaging your liver just like alcohol would. Both alcohol and fructose are metabolized directly in to fat, meaning it just is stored inside those fat cells, leading to unwanted weight gain.
3. Artificial Flavors
This is a scary one too. Did you know that strawberry flavoring can have up to 50 different chemicals? Seeing “artificial flavor” can mean just one ingredient or a blend of hundreds to make it taste the way it does. Genetically Engineered Flavor enhancers are also labeled under artificial flavor or even “natural flavor”, which is incredibly misleading. These have been all linked to brain dysfunctions.
4. Synthetic Trans Fats
The ingredient to look for here is Partially Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil. It is in most chips, crackers, fried foods and even some store bought baked goods. It is known that that this can cause inflammation. Inflammation is the bedrock for many autoimmune diseases and chronic fatigue and chronic pain. Those are just a few of how inflammation can hurt your body. Synthetic trans fats also interfere with insulin receptors that can lead to Diabetes.
Obviously these lengthen the shelf life of the products sold but it truly is, in my opinion, at the cost of the consumer. Sodium Benzonate is found in a lot of sodas, salad dressings and even fruit juices that we think are good for our children. The list can go on and on about the damage this but hyperactivity, allergies, neurological disorders and cancer…. Ugh! Sodium Nitrate is one to look out for too. There are so many preservatives in American food while many countries in Europe have banned many of them including most mentioned above.
If you have lived a life of consuming many of these bad ingredients, it’s still not too late to take charge of your health and stop eating this junk. You can even reduce the damage that has been done. Look at your labels, or better yet, buy foods that don’t NEED labels. Plexus Slim, ProBio 5 and BioCleanse can all help also. By balancing hormones and getting your intestinal tract back in shape, you can overcome what these chemicals have done to your body. It’s not your fault, the FDA is supposed to protect us. Right???