1. Whole Wheat Flour
This applies to the majority of your whole wheat breads, bagels, wraps etc.
Whole wheat flour is in most cases, worse than swallowing plain sugar. Let me elaborate by explaining the glycemic index.
The glycemic index is a relative ranking of carbohydrate in foods according to how they affect blood glucose levels. Basically, the higher the score the greater impact it will have on your blood sugar, thus making you fat. The glycemic index ranks food on a scale from 1 to 100 and classifies foods as either low, medium, or high glycemic.
Glucose, is given a score of 100 because it is the most simple form of sugar. It is the end product in your blood stream when all carbohydrates are broken down into their simplest form.
So let’s take a look at the glycemic index of whole wheat bread for. The glycemic index of most whole wheat breads on the shelf average a score of about 72. This may seem great when compared with glucose but when compared with say…table sugar (a disaccharide containing glucose and fructose) it’s much higher. Table sugar has a score of roughly 68. Which is still pretty high. But what this says is that eating a slice of “heart healthy” whole wheat bread will actually make you fatter than a couple of tablespoons of sugar.
The problem with juices such as orange juice, apple juice, grape juice, etc. is that they seem healthy and are marketed in a way to promote their “healthy” properties such as “100% fruit juice” or “great source of vitamin C”. That’s great and all, but it doesn’t mean they’re healthy.
The problem is that when juice is made all the fiber is taken out and you’re left with a cup of flavored sugar water with vitamins. This is no different than when Coca-cola thought it would be a brilliant idea to make soda with vitamins. The product was never actually released but it might as well have been considering it’s not really all that different.
Fiber is what slows down digestion of sugar to enter your bloodstream slowly and allow your body to utilize the sugar rather than store it.
3. Whole Grain Cereals
How many times have you watched a cheerios commercial claiming that cheerios lowers cholesterol. They even have the heart healthy logo on the package. This is a clever marketing tactic used by cereal companies to promote whole grains as heart healthy. The problem is, it’s not really reflective of what the research says.
The research used to be able to market these products as heart healthy is based on the fact that fiber may help lower cholesterol. Since whole grains contain fiber, then whole grain cereals must obviously lower cholesterol too, right? WRONG!
Until a study is released that cheerios actually lowers cholesterol this will remain an unacceptable fallacy. Correlation does not equal causation. In fact, the highly refined carbohydrates in these cereals may actually cause spikes in blood sugar which can increase cholesterol.
4. Protein bars
They’re great in theory. Increasing protein intake is far under looked and it’s a tasty way to get more of this vital nutrient into your diet. Some of these bars are almost too good to be true. Well that’s because they are. These products are candy bars packed with protein and SUGAR.
Let’s face it guys, you should probably be eating real food anyway.
Most of these bars are also made with cheap low quality proteins like soy for example. Soy protein is very cheap and very unhealthy. Many studies show that soy has estrogen like properties and when consumed in high amounts can lead to a lot of negative health effects.
Bananas seem to be the fruit of choice for many people. They’re sweet, they’re delicious, and they’re high in potassium. Sounds lovely!
Let’s be real, you probably aren’t eating bananas for potassium, and if you are bravo. Most people eat bananas because they’re sweet and high in sugar. The sugar signals your brain to send out a surge of pleasurable and rewarding hormones that make you feel good, like you can conquer the world.
This feeling only lasts a few minutes before your blood sugar drops and you’re craving your next hit…I mean carb.
6. Sugar Free Snacks
They’re sugar free guys! All the diabetics line up in a single file line and grab a box of cookies. You can still enjoy your favorite snacks with no sugar added right? WRONG AGAIN.
Most sugar free cakes, cookies, and snacks are loaded with something called maltodextrin. Molecularly speaking it’s technically not a sugar so food companies can get away with putting sugar free on these labels.
BUT, Maltodextrin is a carbohydrate and actually breaks down just as fast as sugar and has a similar blood sugar response. Thus, making you fatter and more diabetic. So don’t be fooled by the sugar free label. It will not save your life.
7. Flavored Oatmeal
Why do I constantly find myself talking about sugar. Anyway, this stuff is lethal. Oatmeal might be a good choice so why not enjoy a little flavor in your oatmeal?
I just looked up a packet of Quaker Apples and Cinnamon oatmeal and it contains 33 grams of carbohydrates and 12 grams of sugar. That’s almost half a packet of sugar by volume. That’s a lot of sugar relatively speaking.
While you’re reading this blog keep in mind the pattern. It mostly comes down to sugar which is why we are fat and why we are leading the world in preventable diseases.
8. Fruit Flavored Greek Yogurt
It contains probiotics and that’s great and all but it also contains something else. Can you guess it?
If you guessed sugar, you’re right. Let’s take a look at a Chobani Strawberry on the Bottom yogurt. Great way to get some extra protein in your diet with a whopping 15 grams of protein. Contains 19 grams of carbohydrate, 15 of them from sugar. Now, strawberries contain sugar so some of the sugar may be from the strawberries but the third ingredient is Evaporated Cane Juice (aka added sugar).
9. Deli Meat
Deli meats such as sliced turkey, sliced chicken, and roast beef are loaded with sodium. But not just any sodium, they usually contain sodium nitrate/nitrite. This is used as a preservative to keep your products fresh.
Studies suggest that nitrates and nitrites are strongly correlated with cancer. Specifically colorectal cancers. Now this isn’t just another one of those bogus correlations you hear about. It is a STRONG correlation.
10. Drinkable “Superfoods”
You’ve seen them in every produce section with labels like, “high in antioxidants” and “free radical protector”.
First of all, it’s a juice! As we’ve explained in the juice section, it’s loaded with sugar.
Second, there is no such thing as a superfood, all fruits have a pigment which represents which antioxidant it contains.
Third, there is very little research that provides evidence that antioxidants actually work in vivo (in the human body). Much of the evidence suggesting antioxidant effects is done in vitro (in a petri dish) and can not be replicated in vivo.