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Healthy Eating: 4 Food Items You Need to Walk Away From

  By posted Mar 29th 2013
Diet & Fitness


4 Food Items You Need to Walk Away From

Packaged goods, cocktails, sports drinks, bacon and bagels – What do all of them have in common? If consumed carelessly and in large portions without adequate exercise and balanced living, these foods and beverages may interfere with your fitness goals. Find out how and when to walk away from unhealthy foods and what to replace them with...

1. Protein Shakes:
Several studies, and established scientific evidence suggest that one must only resort to protein shakes if his/her daily diet lacks adequate natural protein. Therefore, if you're getting your daily dose of protein, drinking a protein shake will be an overdose. Ideally, protein should count for 25 to 30% of your daily calories and not more than that. And this 25 to 30% is sufficient only for people who exercise for around an hour in a day. To think that the more protein you consume, the better it will be for bone density is wrong, since your body can only process a certain amount of protein daily.

Read more about Who Needs Extra Protein Supplements. 

Instead of protein shakes go for: Scrambled eggs

Eggs make for a complete amino acid requirement for the day and are the most natural and best sources of protein. Even people who suffer from high cholesterol opt for egg whites for breakfast

2. Sports Drinks: Experts say that water is more than enough to help you last through a workout, unless and until you are working for more than 80 to 90 minutes at a stretch. This is because many of the sports drinks are full of ingredients you might not need such as sugar, artificial colouring and flavours along with added sweeteners.

Instead of sports drinks go for: Chocolate milk

Experts agree that chocolate milk is among the best beverages available after you have finished exercising. A study published in the International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism agrees with it. “The study builds on findings that intense endurance exercise reduces the muscles' supply of stored glucose, or glycogen, a key source of fuel for exercise. To maximize glycogen replacement, the American College of Sports Medicine and the American Dietetic Association recommend taking in a serving of carbohydrates within 30 minutes after a long and vigorous workout.” (as mentioned in webmd.com).

3. Cocktails: While alcohol by itself is known to have certain health benefits when consumed in moderation, the artificial sweetners and liqueurs mixed into cocktails aren't of any help. Other than playing havoc to the fat level in your body, an excess of cocktails can interfere with your metabolism levels by increasing your weight and ultimately letting that weight gain affect your body's metabolic rate. So, it is essential to drink your poison in moderation and choose these cocktails wisely.

Instead of cocktail go for: Wine

There have been many speculations as far as the heart-healthy benefits of wine are concerned. It is said that it can keep our blood vessels flexible by boosting our HDL (good) cholesterol. Red wine in particular is known to have health benefits because it is full of Resveratrol - an ingredient that aids in reducing "bad" cholesterol levels and prevents blood clots. (as reported by mayoclinic.com)

Here is the nutritional information for some popular wines, as mentioned in sparkpeople.com. 






Per 5-oz Serving



0.4 g

100 calories, 2 g carbs

Pinot Grigio


0.4 g

100 calories, 2 g carbs

Zinfandel® White Wine


0.4 g

100 calories, 2 g carbs

Cabernet Sauvignon


0.8 g

100 calories, 4 g carbs

Merlot Red Wine


0.8 g

100 calories, 4 g carbs



4. Bacon: Eating breakfast like a king is always recommended by experts, but be cautious when you are eating bacon. Although bacon is high in protein content and works as a great food to build muscles and starve off hunger, please note that it is also full of calories, sodium, cholesterol and saturated fat content. All of this is okay if you are an active person who exercises regularly. If you aren't, then bacon isn't going to help your cause.

Instead of eating regular bacon go for: Canadian bacon

Go for Canadian bacon rather than regular bacon as it contains lower levels of calories, sodium, cholesterol and saturated fat content. A 4 ounce serving of Canadian bacon has 60 mg of cholesterol, approx 380 calories, 10 gm of saturated fat and 900 gm of sodium.






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