If you want to maintain your weight, the first thing you should do is focus on your diet and what you consume. And if you really want to focus on having a healthy and balanced diet, it is very important to start reading the labels on the food you buy. You might be surprised to find out that many products advertised as healthy or sugar/fat-free, are packed with ingredients that are actually worse for you than sugar and fat. This is a well-known strategy among food manufacturers, through which they use misleading terminology in order to present their products in a better light.
But how can we identify the unhealthy ingredients on the label?
Thankfully, we know have access to an increasing quantity of information on this topic. With a bit of research, we can easily identify the unhealthy elements. Here are a few examples.
Firs up we have rice syrup, which is the usual sugar replacement in many products. Actually, this ingredient is basically just sugar and it’s not necessarily bad. However, too much of it in any product can lead to weight gain.
Also replacing the term “sugar” are terms like fructose, sucrose, corn syrup, dextrose, cane sugar and many others. Just like the previous ingredient, if they are ingested in large quantities, they not only lead to weight gain, but can also determine insulin resistance, according to Eat This, Not That.
A popular term to replace the much-blamed animal fat, this time, is lard. This is actually a type of saturated fat, a high intake of which can lead to increased levels of LDL (bad) cholesterol. It can usually be found in baked foods on the shelves of supermarkets and grocery stores. Hydrogenated oils are also a type of saturated fat that you should look for on the labels and try to avoid as much as possible.
Seed oils are also on this list, the heavily processed ones having the potential to determine high levels of inflammation in the body, if consumed too often and in large quantities.
Last, but not least, refined flours are usually found on labels under denominations such as wheat flour, enriched flour or white flour. The issue with refined flours is that they are highly processed and contain a very low level of fibers, which are the actual healthy elements of flour.