They may have been touted as the ultimate diet food during the low-fat/no-fat craze of the late 1980’s and 1990’s, but don’t be fooled. Rice cakes can have a glycemic index rating as high as 91 (pure glucose has a rating of 100), making it the kind of carbohydrate that will send your blood sugar on a roller coaster ride. This is bad for weight loss and for your health .
Fat Free Dressings
Fat-free salad dressings are a perfect example of good food gone bad. Salad dressing is the perfect combination of vinegar (which helps control blood sugar) and plant oils (full of essential fatty acids and sometimes antioxidants). However, an irrational fear of dietary fats has forced food companies to mess around with this perfect blend. The resulting fat-free salad dressings have introduced sugar and high fructose corn syrup, un-pronounceable emulsifying agents, and other food science secrets used to make the unnatural seem natural. It’s too easy to make your own healthy salad dressing to ever let this science experiment in a bottle pass your lips.
Refined & Re-Fortified Grains
Unfortunately this rules out a majority of the carbohydrates found on supermarket shelves. Refined and re-fortified grains are grain-based foods like certain breakfast cereals, pastas, and rice products that have been refined such that the naturally occurring fibre, vitamins, and minerals have been removed. Companies then replace the fibre and synthetic versions of the vitamins and minerals that were initially removed. Sometimes (and this is really sneaky) they put everything back in naturally occurring ratios so that they can still claim the food contains ‘whole grains’. My suggestion: Just eat the real unfortified stuff in the first place.
If you stop eating only one thing on this list, it should be sugar-sweetened beverages. The empty calories help pad your waistline without offering any sense of satiety or fullness. Plus, simple sugars do an excellent job of lowering your good cholesterol and increasing your triglyceride levels (two risk factors for heart disease). Drinking sugary beverages also promotes disturbances in your body’s inflammatory balance, making it harder to recover from exercise and increasing your risk of numerous chronic diseases. Read our article “what happens to your body within an hour of drinking a coke”.