Do You Know What You’re Putting In Your Body? + Tips For Clean Eating
Posted on May 10, 2015
Why is it that the most savory things are the processed, greasy, junk that we humans love putting in our bodies? I’m not saying that we shouldn’t eat those things– they should be consumed in moderation. But today, I just want to go over why those certain foods should be consumed in moderation. Do you really know what you’re putting in your body when you microwave frozen dinners 7 nights a week? Now I hate to be the person that lectures others on drinking green smoothies and eating whole wheat bread all the time, and nor do I try to be (emphasis on try). Of course I like pizza. Of course I like cold soda.Treat yo self (Parks and rec reference right there BAM) But if you’re one of those people who’s diet primarily consists of processed junk, at least you’ll know what’s going inside the next time you pick up that triple cheese burger.
Soda And Carbonated Soft Drinks– Hey is this a science lab cause I sure feel a bunch of chemicals everywhere! Soda contains lots of phosphoric acid. Yep, acid. Yum right! Phosphoric acid slows down your body’s ability to absorb calcium and other nutrients, leading to slower digestion and bone softening. But who cares about not absorbing nutrients- it’s good, who cares? Well, all’s good until obesity kicks in. The average can of soda contains about 10 teaspoons of sugar.According to a study carried out by Harvard researchers, 12 year olds who drank soda were more likely to be obese than those who didn’t, and for each serving of soda consumed daily, the risk of obesity increased 1.6 times. And don’t switch to “diet.” Diet sodas may contain 0 calories, but what they put in it is worse. Instead of sugar, a harmful chemical/acid called aspartame is used, which later converts to methanol and then formic acid. It has also lead to numerous health problems such as diabetes, brain seizures, and brain tumors when consumed too many times.
Processed Foods– Frozen fish sticks and bagel bites! A quick fix for those looking for a lazy and savory meal. That’s great and all, but here’s what you’re putting into your body:
Preservatives-Chemicals used so the food doesn’t spoil
Artificial flavors-Are you sure that’s really fish. . .?
Artificial colors– That chicken sure is a nice shade of yellow
Texturants– Chemicals to make sure it has the right texture.
Ingredients you would think never to be associated with fish sticks. Do you know what dextrose, tripolyphosphate,TBHQ, and riboflavin are?
Because processed foods are usually frozen foods sitting for months in a grocery store, the company has to make sure nothing spoils. So they add in complex chemicals to prevent color change, texture change, and taste change. It’s even listed in the ingredients of Gorton’s Super Crunchy Fish Sticks:
tripolyphosphate (to retain fish moisture)
TBHQ (to protect flavor).
Junk Food ( Chips, Candy, etc)-Besides having no nutritional value and the leading cause to obesity, junk foods like potato chips and burgers have a heck lot of sodium, which according to Google, is “the chemical element of atomic number 11, a soft silver-white reactive metal of the alkali metal group.” In junk food, it translates into salt. It’s also one of the main contributors to high blood pressure, liver and kidney diseases, and heart failures. And according to Harvard Health Publications, “the average American eats five to 10 times more salt than the 2,300 milligrams per day recommended by the U.S. Dietary Guidelines for Americans.” And if those diseases don’t scare you, hey teenage girls out there- did you know that when you consume excess sodium and then drink water, it causes you to bloat and then you don’t look good in selfies? O.O. If I were you I’d cut back a little.
Okay, so now you know some things you’re putting into your body that you probably should not. Now what? Here are some easy tips for eating clean and healthy!
1.The simpler the better– This is probably the easiest way. The simpler the food, the better it is for you. That means fruits, veggies, and grains. Here’s a tip though: when you’re grocery shopping and you’re unsure if a food is healthy or not- look at the ingredients. The less ingredients listed, the better for you. And the best is if you actually know what those ingredients are. Avoid ingredients like enriched wheat, hydrogenated oils, Monosodium Glutamate (MSG), High fructose corn syrup,sucralose, canola oil, and polysorbate 80 ( found in some ice creams).
2.Find delicious healthy recipes– It’s a wide misconception that the healthier the food, the more bland it is. In fact that’s completely untrue! Some of the most delicious things I’ve tried are either vegan, raw, or are not processed or fried. Look up ingredients and have fun! That motivates you to try new things, get better at cooking, and be healthy! And trust me, when you start eating healthy, you feel good all over. Whenever I eat processed food or burgers, I feel icky and full of gunk.
3. Don’t quit cold turkey-Don’t one day suddenly remove all junk food and non- healthy food from your life. That makes it really easy to bounce back to the lifestyle when it starts to get hard. Instead, slowly cut it out of your diet little by little. And remember to treat yourself occasionally! The issue with junk food is when it’s consumed regularly. Remember, moderation. I don’t see anything wrong when it’s celebration night and you and your family go out for ice cream sundaes and pizza. In fact, I find having so called “cheat-days” are helpful to developing a healthy lifestyle. Then you don’t feel deprived and restricted, and the most important part of clean and healthy eating is that you eat enough and do not become miserable.
4.Stick with au naturel- Again, the best stuff comes from nature itself. It’s hard to remove sweetness from a diet, but what there are so many alternatives to white sugar and Stevia! Use honey, agave syrup, or fruit to sweeten something up! When I make smoothies or bake something, I rely on fruits like bananas for the sweetness. Just make sure the fruit is extra ripe for maximum sweetness. Instead of white rice, use brown rice! My family made the switch three years ago, and once you get used to it it’s really good! It’s got a nice texture that white rice doesn’t have, and it isn’t made of sugars and simple carbs either. See how many things can be replaced for better, healthier solutions?! Just Google “alternatives to. . .” and so many results will pop up!
I completely understand if these facts made no impact on your whatsoever. But if there’s one thing I want you to take away, it’s that no matter how greasy, delicious, and crispy the thing is, there are so many things that you don’t see or taste that if you knew what they were, you wouldn’t eat it. Companies disguise chemicals and such into the ingredients for their own gain. Just next time if you had a choice between a soda and a freshly blended smoothie, think about what you’re putting into your body. Your body works 24/7 for you! The least you can do it treat it right.