When it comes to food, we all have our own habits we are sure are doing no harm. But, the truth is, many of the things we regularly do are not healthy. Reader's Digest recently spoke to experts who revealed these seven foods habits you should give up.
1. Overcooking your meat. Yes you have been told meat should be well done but Lisa Richards, nutritionist and creator of TheCandidaDiet.com, says overcooking meat can cause compounds to form that increase oxidative stress and inflammation, and could even increase the risk of certain cancers.
2. Using much or too little fat for cooking. Splashing too much oil into your meal dramatically increases the calorie content of your meal, which could lead to weight gain. However, skimping on the oil or healthy fats means you are missing out on some major health benefits. The healthy option lies somewhere in the middle.
3. Throwing out products that reached their "sell-by" dates. There can be great confusion between a product's "sell-by" date and its "use-by" date and this leads to wasting food. Registered dietician Kris Sollid recommends going according to the "use-by" date, which indicates when a food should be eaten.
4. Only going for egg whites. The messages over exactly how to eat our eggs have been scrambled. Registered dietician Hillary Cecere set the record straight. "I wish people would cook with the yolks of eggs more," Cecere said. "So many people are just eating egg whites to save calories, but the yolk is where all the nutrition is."
5. Going gluten-free. More and more people are adopting a gluten-free diet however, unless you actually have a proven allergy, sensitivity, or intolerance, there is no proven health benefit to do so. In fact, removing gluten unnecessarily makes it much harder to get enough fiber, vitamins, and minerals in your diet, registered dietician Malina Malkani said.
6. Ditching fruit because of its sugar content. High protein diets have led us to believe fruit is the enemy when it comes to weight loss and healthy eating. This is because of reports they are high in sugar, however, what many do not realize is the body does not digest sugar in fruit the same way as it does refined table sugar. Fruit does not cause the same insulin-spoking effect and the fiber also helps us feel fuller for longer, Malkani said.
7. Letting frozen food thaw on the counter. This is a bad idea. Letting frozen foods defrost at room temperature creates the perfect breeding ground for bacteria that can cause foodborne illness. Thaw your food in the refrigerator.
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