4 processed foods that are terrible for your health, say doctors

If you want to lead a healthy life, eating highly processed foods is never a good solution. Eating balanced, nutritious meals is the best way to keep your body functioning properly. Unfortunately, processed foods can be some of the tastiest and most convenient options, but if you are aware of the risks involved, you can make healthy, informed decisions about the foods you eat and avoid those that will impact you. . your body.

To learn more about some of the worst culprits when it comes to processed foods impacting your well-being, we spoke to registered dietitian Lisa Richards, creator of The Candida Dietand Jesse Feder, RDN, CPT at strength warehouse. These experts told us that white bread, ramen noodles, frozen dinners, and sugary breakfast cereals should be avoided as much as possible.

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woman putting slices of white bread in toaster

1. White bread

Despite the fact that white bread is the option of choice for many people in the United States, health experts say it’s also the least healthy. Richards explains this is because white bread is highly processed and stripped of its nutritional value. “White bread is made with refined carbs and lacks fiber and other beneficial nutrients,” she says, adding that refined carbs “turn into sugar quickly, causing glucose to rise rapidly.” Additionally, white bread can have serious consequences for your body due to its inflammatory ingredients. “Refined carbs create a low-level state of inflammation in the body that causes a host of health issues, including diminished cognitive function,” she warns. Ouch! We will go with whole wheat next time.

rows of ramen noodles at the grocery store

2. Prepackaged ramen noodles

Let’s face it: ramen noodles are just as delicious and easy to make. However, it probably won’t come as a surprise to learn that health experts say they’re terrible for your overall health. “It’s well understood that these meals are loaded with sodium, which can cause inflammation, bloating, high blood pressure, belly fat, and other health issues,” Richards tells us. Say it’s not! You should be especially wary of this food if you want to keep your gut health in check, as it says dehydrated ramen noodles are “highly processed and inflammatory, which can lead to gut dysbiosis and bloating.” Guess we can’t survive on our diet since college forever!

sweet cereal aisle in a grocery store

3. Frozen dinners

Frozen dinners are another super easy option that you might find yourself reaching for in a pinch, when you don’t have the time or energy to make yourself a nutritious dinner. Sadly, however, Feder says they’re off-limits to anyone who wants to follow a healthy diet. “Frozen dinners usually contain high amounts of fat and salt to make them taste good and preserve them,” he says. “High amounts of fat and salt can lead to weight gain, obesity, high blood pressure, and cardiovascular disease.” Oh oh ! It’s also worth noting that, just like white bread, these meals are usually loaded with refined carbs, which means you’ll rack up calories that won’t satisfy you and could lead to overeating later on. The healthier options will include plenty of veggies and protein, but overall it’s best to avoid the frozen meal aisle at the grocery store.

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4. Sweet cereals

While you might like to indulge in a sweet bowl of Cinnamon Toast Crunch once in a while, it’s important to note that sugary cereal is one of the worst ways to start your day if you care about your overall health. . “Sugary cereals are one of the most unhealthy processed foods you can have. They’re loaded with sugar, sodium, and refined carbs,” Feder confirms. “These things, when eaten in large amounts and on a consistent basis, can lead to obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, and heart disease. Highly processed and refined ingredients usually give you a boost of energy because they can be digested very quickly. This then causes our blood sugar levels to crash and can slow down your metabolism.” For a healthier alternative, try making your own granola or cooking hearty oatmeal.

At the end of the day, no one is perfect, and it’s natural to eat less-than-healthy foods from time to time. However, in most cases, avoiding these processed foods as much as possible is the best way to ensure that your body stays happy and healthy.

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