So you’re looking to lose a couple of pounds but nothing is working. Yes you have lost some weight but it seems to have slowed down considerably. There are certain foods out there that we KNOW are potentially harmful for our health and inhibit weight loss. But what if there were foods that aren’t as obvious which could be hindering your weight loss goals? Below are 12 “foods” that are causing you to hold onto your weight.
Refined sugar is one of the most toxic substances that you could possibly ingest. White refined sugars are so concentrated that it is rapidly absorbed into the bloodstream, this not only creates havoc in the body but it leads to weight gain as unused energy from sugar will be stored as fat.
Fructose on the other hand in naturally occurring within fruits and vegetables and can be processed much easier by the body and have little effects on weight gain. However, if fruits are juiced this then concentrates the levels of fructose which when consumed acts much like refined sugar, so when juicing ensure that you limit the amount of sweet fruits.
Added sugar is common place in our processed world. Sugar is continuously added to almost any processed food imaginable, normally in high quantities. Even foods such as pastries, pizzas and pastas have added sugar.
Refined processed sugar does not contain any nutrients whatsoever and cutting back or completely avoiding sugar will see huge benefits on your waistline and a beneficial impact on your health, vitality and longevity.
Tip: If you cannot resist eating sweet things, substitute sugar with Stevia, Xylitol or organic honey. A better option would be Stevia as it does not contain any calories. If you have tried Stevia but it leaves a strange after taste, feel free to explore with Xylitol.
2. Artificial Sweeteners
Artificial sweeteners are a nightmare concoction of lethal chemicals that are incredibly detrimental for the body. Artificial sweeteners such as Aspartame are known carcinogens and are extremely and wreak havoc on your endocrine and lymphatic systems. Aspartame when metabolised in the body, becomes methanol which is common wood alcohol – a highly poisonous substance. Aspartame is the most commonly used artificial sweetener used in the United States. Not only this, artificial sweeteners are known to increase cravings for sugar, promote weight gain and increases the storage of fat. So the diet Coke that most people think is the safer option is actually making you gain weight rather than lose it.
Tip: These are ARTIFICIAL, anything usually artificial is incredibly bad for you – stick to natural forms of sweeteners such as fruit if you are looking for a sugar fix. Otherwise Stevia and organic raw Honey is awesome, add some to green tea!
Artificial sweeteners are as follows:
Commonly known as Nutrasweet, Sucralose – Splenda.
This form of artificial sweetener is found in most of the diet soft drinks such as diet Coke and Coke Zero.
Commonly known as Equal, Sweet‘N Low and Sugar Twin. These sweeteners are found at many cafes mostly in a sachet form as an alternative to sugar.
Salt is a mineral that is crucial for the body and is a mineral that we require to survive. However for most people their salt intake is from processed sources that are an addition to increase flavour and preserve foods, this salt is most often added in large quantities. Salt additives have been chemically processed to a degree where these chemicals are potentially toxic for your body. This salt has all its valuable minerals stripped and has been rendered to a white substance which is laden with chemicals.
Tip: There is a huge difference between regular table and cooking salts in comparison to good sources of salt rich in minerals such as Himalayan Pink salt. If you cannot find Himalayan Pink salt, Celtic salt is unrefined and is suitable for cooking.
4. Tap Water
Now this isn’t technically a food. But it is definitely worth mentioning. Quite a few water sources around the world are contaminated with toxins and additives such as fluoride and chlorine. These chemicals when consumed create adverse side effects. A build up of toxins in the liver can act as a block for nutrient absorption and can cause excess weight gain. To ensure your intake of water is safe requires the use of a good quality water filter.
Gluten occurs naturally within wheat and some other grains. Gluten was a minor part of the genetic structure of wheat until homogenization took place. Since then wheat has high levels of indigestible gluten which now is common place in refined white breads, pastas and many other products which contain wheat. Not only this, most of the world’s wheat crop is genetically modified and is riddled with pesticides, fungicides, and toxic fertilizers. On top of this, wheat has been stripped of nearly all of its vitamins and minerals found in its natural state, making it an empty carbohydrate. Gluten is found to be a nutrient inhibitor once in the digestive system. Picture this, you eat your bowl of pasta and this “food” begins to make its way through your digestive system, one problem – gluten becomes “glue” like expanding and sticking on your gut walls creating blockages throughout your digestive system and your colon. These blockages do not allow nutrients to be absorbed in the digestive process. Weight gain is often as a side effect of gluten as with the common “beer belly” which many beer drinkers often have.
6. Vegetable Oil
Vegetable oils are a cheaper inferior form of oil. These oils are often created by a chemically dictated extraction method which uses numerous potentially harmful chemicals such as hexane and solvents. Vegetable oils are not oils extracted from vegetables they are processed and extracted from vegetable seeds. The extraction processes then heats these poly-unsaturated fats making it turn rancid. Once ingested these heated fats then create inflammation and increase free radical damage leading to heart disease and a number of other ailments. After the extraction process the oil is goes through another stage of deodorization which basically masks the smell from the rancid oil. Vegetable oils are a type of fat that is easily oxidised this means that by consuming oxidised vegetable oils will induce our body to go into oxidative stress leading to heart disease, cancer and many other diseases. There has been a direct correlation related to heart disease as our consumption of vegetable oils had risen while we avoided saturated fats. We now know that these saturated fats are fats that we should be consuming, while avoiding poly-unsaturated fats such as canola oil, safflower oil, soy bean oil, sesame oil and corn oil.
Tip: Instead of using any form of vegetable oil try using oils from fruits such as avocado oil, olive oil and coconut oil. Butter and lard are saturated fats and these are safe for our bodies ensure that these butters from grass fed cows are the best form of butter to be consuming.
Margarine is created from vegetable oil and is hydrogenated to get the thick buttery consistency. This process allows the creation of trans-fats, a lethal type of fat that has numerous side effects when ingested– these side effects being cancer, heart disease and weight gain, trans-fats also raise cholesterol levels. Furthermore margarine has emulsifiers, solvents and preservatives added.
Tip: Again just like vegetable oils, look for some grass fed butter this type of butter is far more beneficial to consume.
8. Microwaveable Popcorn
Microwaveable popcorn in the most part is extremely toxic popcorn on its own is safe but the additives which are mixed in with these lethal bags are not. Most microwaveable popcorn bags are coated with hydrogenated oil mostly being soy bean oil which we know is a hazardous trans-fat. On top of this, the popcorn bag is lined with chemicals to prevent the oil and other ingredients from escaping. Once the popcorn is placed in the microwave the compounds within the bag break down into something called perfluorooctanoic acid – P.F.O.A. for short. High exposure to P.F.O.A. has been linked to cancer, infertility and a whole host of health problems. Furthermore added flavourings on the popcorn are potentially harmful. One notable flavour additive is diacetyl which gives the popcorn the buttery taste that everyone loves. Diacetyl has been discontinued however the host of other additives that replaced diacetyl could be even more toxic.
Tip: If you are craving popcorn try to go down the route of buying some organic popping corn. Then flavour it with Himalayan pink salt and a little grass fed butter.
9. Soy products
Soy is processed with Hexane which is derived as a by-product from the petroleum industry. Hexane is used to extract oils from the soy bean leaving the bean stripped of nutrients. If consumed in a large amount by children, Phyto-estrogens that are contained in soy products induce an earlier maturation in girls and increases feminisation in boys. Estrogens and phytic acid found in soy also inhibits nutrient absorption. Soy also contains goitregens which are known to inhibit thyroid function leading to hyperthyroidism.
Tip: If you are consuming soy milk swap over to some nut based milks such as almond milk or cashew milk. Other alternatives milks made from quinoa and chia seed are great if you are looking for milk high in proteins, vitamins and minerals.
10. GMO Foods
Genetically Modified Organisms have become far more common place. GMO foods are modified to resist pesticides and all attacks on crops making them more economically viable through generating a larger harvest. Unfortunately, genetic modification changes the structure of these plants and have been shown to be extremely carcinogenic. Most common GMO food stuffs are corn and corn products such as high fructose corn syrup others such as soy, soy products such as tofu, tomatoes, papaya, GMO rice, potatoes, milk from cows that have been injected with bovine growth hormone and canola oil.
11. Processed Meats
Processed meats are just that – processed! These meats are usually off cuts from animal carcasses mixed together using gums and emulsifiers. Furthermore, processed meats require a tremendous amount of processing before they can be sold to the public, one of these processing methods is to preserve the meat using sodium nitrate which has been shown to cause cancer. These processed meats in the most part are from animals that have been mass farmed. These animals suffer unsurmountable cruelty within feed lots and are also force fed a highly acidic grain diet which promotes inflammation in their digestive system and udders. Eating highly acidic and mistreated animals has an acidic effect in our bodies.
12. Canned Foods
You wouldn’t have thought of this one but canned foods are another form of toxic food that everyone consumes regularly, whether it is adding tomatoes to a pasta sauce or beans to a Mexican dish. Unfortunately most canned or tinned products have a toxic internal lining which is coated with a substance known as BPA (Bisphenol-a) this chemical has been added to prevent the food from going off and to extend shelf life. The most toxic among canned foods are canned tomatoes. Canned tomatoes are known to contain larger amounts of BPA than other canned products this is due to the naturally occurring acid which leaches BPA from the lining inside the can.
If you are consuming these foods on our list you should re-evaluate and start making changes to your pantry and fridge. You will feel much better once these foods have been phased out and your body will thank you in the long run.
If you have any tips or tricks to add please feel free to comment below, we appreciate everything that you have to share with us.
To your health and wellness!
Photo Credit: jeffreyw