Smart Food Choices: Foods a
Nutritionist Would Never Eat

Smart Food Choices: Foods a Nutritionist Would Never Eat

Eating in the modern world can be difficult owing to the genetic modifications, chemical treatments, and inhumanely raised food floating around out there. Sometimes compromising is necessary when it comes to food choices, but still, there are some food items that food nutritionists would never let touch their lips owing to their harmful impact on health and weight.

But it doesn't mean you can't eat out. Any type of social hangout like going out for movies, dinner, coffee, date with loved ones, etc. is incomplete without FOOD. But if you are watching your weight or just are concerned with healthy eating, dining out can be a challenge. The good news is that usually there are healthier options at every restaurant, even at fast-food places.

What are some foods you should refrain from eating?

Just as there are some healthy foods that you should try to eat every day, there is a matching list of foods you should not eat. Such foods can seem very tasty or nutritious or both, but they may be laced with unwanted components like sugar and fats that can cause you enough harm.

Putting on some weight or having a sluggish metabolism rate are just two of the consequences- you can also fall ill by eating such foods in an unmoderated amount. Here’s the list of foods you should stay away from:-

1. Breakfast Cereals

Those colorful breakfast cereals which you consider good for your health are highly processed, have a high GI because of the high and hidden sugar content (which causes your blood sugars to drop very quickly after eating them), high in sodium, and high in preservatives. So there is only one thing we can say about them – Just don’t eat them.

Alternatives: Instead of breakfast cereals opt for quinoa porridge or my homemade gluten-free granola.

2. Processed Peanut Butter

The key ingredients used in the manufacturing of this product is sugar. As these are laden with sugar and preservatives, processed peanut butter is a big no-no.

Alternatives: 100% nut butter found in health food stores or a health foods section of grocery stores. E.g.:- Almond butter or ABC (almond, Brazil nut, and cashew) nut butter.

3. Salted Nuts

Nutritionists avoid salted nuts as the sodium content in pre-salted is sky-high.

Alternatives: Raw and activated nuts and seeds.

4. Non-Organic Dairy

Milk producers treat their dairy cattle with growth hormones to boost milk production. Not only does this increase the production but it also increases udder infections and even pus in the milk. It also leads to increased levels of a hormone called insulin-like growth factor in milk.

Alternatives: Organic milk, almond milk, rice milk, coconut milk.

5. Vegetable Oil

Vegetable oils are highly processed and high in trans fats. Normally saturated fats get the blame, but actually, trans fats are the ones responsible for the increase in LDL — the bad type of cholesterol that may lead to bad heart health.

Alternatives: Coconut oil, olive oil

6. Canned Fruits & Vegetables

There’s tons of hidden salt and sugar in canned edibles! The resin linings of tin cans contain bisphenol-A, a synthetic estrogen that has been linked to ailments ranging from reproductive problems to heart disease, diabetes, and obesity.

Alternatives: Fresh and organic vegetables and fruits.

PS: If you do not like vegetables, here’s a smarter way to eat them. You can incorporate these delicacies in your regular meals because they are both delicious and nutritious.

7. Artificial Sweeteners

Since our bodies don’t recognize these substances as food, rather than curbing the desire for sweeteners they increase it and ultimately result in weight gain.

Alternatives: Rice malt syrup, maple syrup, dates, raw honey (in small amounts).

8. Margarine

Margarine is high in “bad fats” also known as trans fats. These are fats formed during the hydrogenation process (which turns liquid vegetable oils into solids).

Alternatives: Organic butter, coconut butter, or avocado

9. Processed Meat

The animals that make these products are given growth hormones, antibiotics, and other veterinary drugs, and are raised in deplorable conditions that are not good for their health. These meats are also filled with sodium nitrite (a commonly used preservative and antimicrobial agent that also adds color and flavor) and other chemical flavorings and dyes.

Alternatives: Organic meat

So if you are serious about losing weight and maintaining good health swear, you should rather stay away from these unhealthy foods.

Healthy Foods to Eat Every Day

Simple guidelines to be healthy

By following some simple guidelines, you can enjoy eating out and still have a healthy diet. So here are a few of the smart choices that I make to avoid being antisocial and at the same time keep my weight loss practices on the right path:

1. Cafe

If you are going for a coffee with your friend or colleague, you can make it worthy and harmless for your diet regime. Sometimes you feel that it’s just a coffee and it’s ok to take it, but NO.

Cappuccino or Frappe may be as heavy as a meal as they are loaded with added sugar and fats and hence it becomes important to make a healthier choice:

  • Order a black coffee or a green tea instead of a latte or a whole fat cappuccino. If you want to use a creamer, then ask for almond milk or soy milk rather than taking a whole fat creamer.

  • If you like to have something cold, have an iced coffee with stevia or treat yourself to a cup of Mocha without sugar.

  • If you want to munch on something, avoid high-fat muffins/cakes/biscotti’s and opt for nuts!

2. Movie

If you are a movie buff and like to catch up on movies often with your friends or family, then go ahead with that but know how to stay healthy and avoid unnecessary calories coming from that junk food being served at the theaters.

If you prefer popcorn, then the ideal quantity is 2 handfuls as it is loaded with butter. Instead of nachos and cheese, get yourself something else like a low-fat frozen yogurt (if there is any healthy option). Avoid hot dogs and go for no cheese/butter sandwiches and foods with empty calories like cola drinks. You may instead opt for plain water.

3. Dining Out at a Restaurant

Now, this is the trickiest place where all your week’s effort can go in vain in minutes. So let me highlight some healthier options, which could be a great help to save your weight loss efforts:

a) Drinks

Usually, the evening or the afternoon starts with drinks. So make sure your drinks are not loaded with sodas or any type of sugar syrups. Instead have sparkling water or a fresh lime with soda.

b) Appetizers

  • Now, this is the trickiest place where all your week’s effort can go in vain in minutes. So let me highlight some healthier options, which could be a great help to save your weight loss efforts:

  • At a Japanese restaurant, order yourself a miso soup and some sushi. It will make you so full that you can jump straight to the desserts and skip the main course.

  • At a Mexican restaurant, have soup and some guacamole with some chips.

  • At an Italian restaurant, have some nice broth soup as it has few calories in comparison to the other creamy soups. You can have some crostini with no cheese or a salad with dressing on the side.

  • At an Indian restaurant, have a dal soup/chicken tikka/paneer tikka. Avoid the kebabs as they are loaded with fats.

c) Sides

Some of the super healthy and extremely delicious options for the sides are as under:

  • Instead of fries, go for sauteing veggies.

  • Ask for steamed broccoli seasoned with salt and pepper as they are yummy.

  • Order jacket potato with some salsa.

Suggested article: Here’s a unique case study on the topic.

d) Main Course

Chinese/Thai main course choices – steamed brown rice/white rice with veggies or chicken. Avoid lamb!

Japanese main course can be again some rice & veggies. Mexican cuisine healthier choices can include burrito without the cheese. Italian food lovers can enjoy pizza with less cheese and lots of veggies, no sauce pasta with vegetables/olive oil. Avoid high cheese and cream main course options like lasagna.

Indian main course choices can include dal tadka with some rice or a chicken gravy without ghee or cream. Another option that can be opted for is a tandoori roti with some low-fat palak paneer.

Go light on the main course options as desserts are yet to come!

e) Desserts

One should never curb the desire for desserts because there are often a wide number of healthy choices available. Don’t forget to follow the sharing rule while enjoying desserts- have a spoon or two rather than having the whole portion. Here are a few safe choices:

  • A plate of fresh fruits.

  • Low-fat yogurt topped with fruits.

  • Granita or sorbets.

Your lifestyle reflects your diet and eating habits

Hence by opting for these choices, you can effectively balance your health and social lifestyles. Don’t forget that weight loss is easy if you have your way outs. So be smart and create inspiration around for others as well. Remember that cheating with your diet once a while is OKAY but if you make some lifestyle changes, the journey of weight loss becomes easier and fun. Cheers!