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Health Foods to Avoid

Health Foods to Avoid
(Robert Kneschke/Dreamstime)

By    |   Friday, 02 August 2019 10:34 AM

When we think of foods to remove from our daily diet, we automatically come up with a list that includes so-called junk food like doughnuts, candy, cake, and other processed foods filled with empty calories and lots of sugar.

But marketing savvy has promoted potentially dangerous foods as health foods, despite reality.

Here, a leading dietitian debunks the myths surrounding certain foods that have been touted as terrific.

  1. Soy. Soy has been promoted as a health food for decades, especially for vegetarians who are seeking a source of protein. Although soy has been consumed in Asia for ages, it does have its drawbacks here in America. “Most soy products in the United States are GMO, or genetically modified,” Amy Shapiro, RD, CDN of Real Nutrition NYC, tells Newsmax. “I only recommend organic soy for that reason to my clients. I also usually recommend consuming soy as edamame — the whole soy bean — or as tempeh or miso because they are fermented. Fermentation does decrease the negative effects of soy and actually has some great health benefits for gut health and immunity.” Shapiro points out that soy contains phytoestrogens and consuming too much can be downright dangerous for the body.  According to a study conducted by Loma Linda University soy foods can have a negative effect on thyroid function. Researchers recommend waiting at least four hours after consuming soy to take thyroid medication. “Limit your servings to two to three portions weekly,” says Shapiro. 
  2. Agave Nectar. This so-called health food has been trending for a while and has been touted as a low glycemic alternative to traditional sweeteners. “I never recommend agave for the fact it is 99% fructose and our bodies can’t use it for energy,” says Shapiro. “Plus, it is overly processed.” Agave’s fructose levels go directly to the liver where it’s converted into blood fats called triglycerides that can increase your risk of heart disease. “I would rather my clients ingest a small amount of sugar from honey over this product,” Shapiro adds.
  3. Canola Oil.  This oil is found in a plethora of products ranging from salad dressing to mayonnaise. However, the United States and Canada do not permit canola oil to be used in infant formula because it retards growth in animals. It’s also been linked to reduced platelet count and shorter life span and goes rancid very easily. According to Healthline, canola oil contains trans fats, which are harmful to health. It’s also highly refined using a chemical process that involves high heat, which decreases the nutritional value of the oil.  “Again, canola oil is largely genetically modified,” says Shapiro. “I do like the neutral flavor for baking and cooking and the fact it contains Omega-3 fatty acids, so if people want to use it, I recommend buying organic and non-GMO only. I also recommend not heating it to higher than the recommended temperature on the bottle to prevent the oxidation of fatty acids.”

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When we think of foods to remove from our daily diet, we automatically come up with a list that includes so-called junk food like doughnuts, candy, cake, and other processed foods filled with empty calories and lots of sugar. But marketing savvy has promoted...
health foods, avoid, danger
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2019-34-02
Friday, 02 August 2019 10:34 AM
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