Who doesn’t love a fry up once in a while, or chomping on a premade pizza?

Delicious foods are everywhere and, if you are short on prep time, you may think there is no harm in placing some premade or ready meals into your shopping basket. It should come as no surprise, however, that certain foods have been found to be better for long-term health than others. 

When you are putting your grocery list together, or you are looking at items to buy in the store, it is worth knowing a bit more about which ones have long-term health implications, especially if consumed in excess. This will help you to make better choices about the food your consume, as well as the food that you feed your family every day. 

So, read on to learn about the most commonly consumed foods that have been linked to long-term medical issues. You may be surprised by some of them!

Soda and Sugary Beverages

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First on the list are sugary beverages. No surprise really!

Adults and children love sugar and most of the popular drinks on the market, such as soda, sports drinks and fruit juices have sugar added to them.

Sugar is tasty but consuming it in excess comes with its own set of issues, according to Healthline, such as an increased risk for type 2 diabetes, as well as heart disease, obesity and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.

If you have a high-energy job, try to consume water, or fruit juices that have no added sugar. Plus, unsweetened tea and coffee are natural stimulants, which are better for you than energy drinks.

Red Meats

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Red meats have long been in the firing line as a source of health problems. Studies by Harvard Health have shown that if a person has a high intake of red or processed meats, they are at a higher risk for cancer, heart disease and even diabetes.

So, while that rump roast may seem tasty to have every day, you may be putting your health at risk. Try to eat the red meats, such as pork, beef, venison and lamb a few times per month. If you need to eat meat, aim to mix in chicken, salmon and other lean meats to your diet. And, of course, don’t forget vegetables!

Processed Bread

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Many people would be surprised by what ‘natural’ bread looks like. Indeed, commercial consumption of bread has led to people assuming that a pale, square white loaf is the normal appearance of this complex carb.

White bread, to be white, has been stripped of the bran and germ, which reduces the fiber content, as well as being bleached. This ages the grains, to make them white. However, this process has been linked to gastrointestinal issues, heart disease, type 2 diabetes and cancer.Try to choose whole wheat breads, or, why not try your hand at making bread yourself?

Fried Foods

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Yes, after a long night out, a fried breakfast is ideal. However, fried foods like southern-style chicken, or french fries are usually cooked in oil, making them high in trans fats. This increases LDL levels in the blood, upping bad cholesterol. In turn, this increases the risk of heart disease and has been named by some doctors as the ‘heart attack’ diet. So, if you have to fry food, opt for an air fryer and avoid oils in your cooking.

Fatty Meats (bacon, pork)

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Not to demonize saturated fats, as some is needed for a healthy diet, but if you are consuming foods that are high in them, such as butter, cream and fatty meats like bacon, you are going to be raising your LDL cholesterol.

This can cause issues with the heart, such as angina and can, of course, lead to heart attacks. It has been stated by the NHS that, in a healthy diet, around 20-30g of fat should be in your diet. Anything higher, and there is likely to be a health issue long-term.

Luncheon Meats

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Processed meats, like ham, baloney and of course, luncheon meat are usually made from poor-quality, high fat meats. They are also usually loaded with added water and salt. If you eat tinned meats like SPAM or corned beef, these are not free from salt either! Studies have linked these to cancers, heart disease and, you guessed it, diabetes. So, when making a sandwich, opt for cured meats.

Frozen Pizza

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The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles have a lot to answer for here! Frozen pizza is one of the most purchased grocery items in the US and, as it is frozen, it also has a high level of trans fat and salt. Both of these have been linked to high blood pressure, kidney disease and even stroke. If you love pizza, there are ways to make it at home using your own dough and low salt-topping, so why not try your hand at making your own?

Peeled Potatoes

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The skin on a potato is more important than many people think! If you peel a potato, the starch and fiber that the potato once had is now gone. When it is eaten, the blood sugar will spike and can cause issues with insulin. Long-term, this can lead to diabetes. If you have to have skinned potatoes, limit it to once a week.

Cookies/Crackers/Chips

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It is ever so tempting when working in an office to have some packaged snacks next to the computer to keep you going. However, the common culprits like cookies, crackers and chips are full of empty calories, sugar and, of course, salt. These all contribute to weight gain, as well as type 2 diabetes and heart disease. So, if you have to have snacks at your desk, choose nuts, fruits and veggie sticks. These will also help to level your energy out, and will prevent you feeling sluggish!

Processed Meat with Added Nitrates

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One thing that many people are not aware of is that meats are often preserved to prevent spoilage and to enhance the color. The preservative that is used are nitrites, which have been linked to all manner of cancer, from breast, to prostate, to bladder. So, check the meat you eat and always opt for nitrate-free options if you can.

Sugary Cereals

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Breakfast cereals are one of the most consumed early-morning foods and those aimed at children are typically loaded with added sugars and refined grains. Shockingly, they also have limited nutritional value and can cause problems with blood sugar spiking, type 2 diabetes and obesity. If you or your children want to consume cereal, opt for oatmeal or whole grain options. Or you could swap your breakfast for fruit, yogurt, or even poached eggs. 

Diet Cola 

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It seems that no soda is safe! Artificial sweeteners, like aspartame, are added to diet sodas to give a sugary taste. It is true that while the effects of these additives are still being researched, they have been linked to issues with blood pressure, blood sugar regulation (ironically) and issues with high cholesterol levels.

Barbecued Meats

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On a warm summer’s day, everyone loves to have a barbecue.

However, when cooking meat at high temperatures, there is the risk of compounds called heterocyclic amines, or HCA’s forming, as well as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. These have been found to increase the risk of stomach and liver cancers so, always ,marinate before you put meat on the grill!

Pastries

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Pastries like Danish are delicious, as are croissants. However, they are loaded with saturated fat, carbohydrates and added sugars. Regular consumption of them has, you guessed it, been linked to weight gain, type 2 diabetes and heart disease, so, keep them as an occasional treat!

Flavored Popcorn

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Plain popcorn is a source of fiber and is a low-calorie snack. However, commercially produced varieties, such as those that have butter, cheese or toffee coverings, are loaded with fat and sodium, both of which have been linked to heart disease and weight gain. S, if you can, opt for plain popcorn, except when you go to the movies!

Tinned Soup

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Tinned or canned soup is a simple meal option but, unless you shop for a specific brand, the average option is full of sodium and additives. Excess salt can cause bloating, as well as lead to hormonal problems, heart issues and hypertension. 

Flavored Yogurts

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Greek yogurt is great for your health and is ideal for optimal gut health. However, flavored options often come loaded with added sugar, which can cause weight gain, blood sugar spikes and an increase in the chance of the development of type 2 diabetes.

Chicken Nuggets

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Whether they are purchased from a supermarket or a fast food restaurant, chicken nuggets are far from being as nutritious as many people think. They are made from heavily processed chicken, which is bulked up with water, salt and, of course, preservatives.

Nectar

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Leaving the most surprising until last, many people will have heard that nectar is a healthy sugar alternative. However, it is, in fact, just concentrated fructose. Much like eating raw sugar, too much can lead to fatty liver disease, diabetes and weight gain. So, if you love Agave Nectar, limit it to pancakes, once a week! Or, swap it for honey!

15 Foods You Shouldn’t Eat After 50

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Age is just a number, but not regarding eating habits. The older you grow, the more your body needs nutritious food to stay fit and healthy. While there are many things you’re encouraged to eat, when you cross 50, your go-to foods can’t look the same as they once were. Your body is changing, and so should your eating habits. 

Read: 15 Foods You Shouldn’t Eat After 50

15 Nostalgic Dinners from the Past That Are Rarely Seen Today

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The scent of a family meal cooking can bring back memories, especially if it’s a childhood favorite we don’t often have as adults. This article showcases 18 classic dinners that provided convenience and budget-friendliness for parents and are worthy of a revival. These traditional dinners from the past trigger nostalgic memories and are worth rediscovering.

15 Nostalgic Dinners from the Past That Are Rarely Seen Today

19 ‘Healthy’ Foods That Are Making You Gain Weight

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Eating healthy but still gaining weight can be frustrating. What’s more surprising is that some foods marketed as healthy are contributing to those extra pounds. These seemingly good-for-you options can be loaded with hidden calories, from granola to smoothies. Let’s delve into 19 ‘healthy’ foods that might secretly sabotage your diet.

19 ‘Healthy’ Foods That Are Making You Gain Weight

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