13 More Convincing Reasons to Avoid Processed Foods

poptarts_processedfoodsarticleNot too long ago, I presented 16 Convincing Reasons to Avoid Processed Foods.  The response was well-received from readers.  Isn’t it shocking to learn the horrors of what goes on in processed food manufacturing?

So I decided to provide even more reasons to stop eating processed, chemical-laden foods.

Many packaged, processed foods contain more unpronounceable, bio-chemistry type ingredients rather than actual real foods.  Become an active participant in knowing what you are putting into your mouth simply by looking at the list of ingredients before you put the product into your shopping cart.

If the product contains chemicals and things unpronounceable, then don’t purchase it — do your health and the health of your loved ones a favor.  Also, if you see the words “high fructose corn syrup” or “hydrogenated oils” or “trans fats” or “soybean oil” or “corn oil”  then step far far away.  These ingredients are linked to heart disease, obesity, diabetes, and neuro-degenerative disease.

Below is a list of 13 more convincing reasons to avoid processed foods.  Replace processed foods with real, whole foods.  Quick tip: the lesser the number of ingredients in the product, the better.  Shop the perimeter when at the grocery store — or better yet, get to know your farmers by buying from the local Farmer’s Market.

1.  A University of Cincinnati study found that a diet high in fructose and trans fat doesn’t just lead to obesity — it also causes oxidative damage to the liver that decreases your body’s ability to eliminate toxins.

2. Only 1 percent of obesity is caused by genetics; the rest is caused by diet. 

3.  Cockroaches and flies that visit factory farms are becoming resistant to antibiotics, and researchers at North Carolina State University fear these bugs may spread this resistance into nearby towns.

4.  Today, more kids recognize McDonald’s Golden Arches than the Christian cross. 

5.  People who eat foods with artificial sweeteners often end up consuming more total calories per day.  It’s likely because these sweeteners are so much sweeter than sugar that they prime the brain’s desire for even more sweet foods.

6.  Residues of more than seventy pesticides have been found in individual boxes of cereal. 

7.  Like tobacco companies before them, processed-food manufacturers now offer “healthier” versions of products that are no better at preventing disease than the foods that preceded them.  In other words, low-tar cigarettes equal low-fat cookies. 

8.  Lay’s Light and Pringles Light potato chips contain olestra, a fat substitute that leaches fat-soluable nutrients like vitamin D from the body and causes diarrhea, bloating, and “anal leakage.”

9.  Soy protein, found abundantly in processed foods, has been linked to infertility in women. 

10.  One or more rodent hairs are allowed per hundred grams of peanut butter.

11.  Most processed foods contain at least one — if not several — soy-derived ingredient.  While considered to be healthy, consumption of soy products is associated with cognitive decline and brain atrophy.  

12.  Candy corn is actually made with corn — corn syrup.

13.  The hidden costs of the dollar menu at fast-food chains are steep.  The annual expense of medical care and missed work add up to $83 billion for depression, $183 billion for Alzheimer’s disease, $270 billion for obesity, and $174 billion for diabetes. 

Resource:  The Happiness Diet by Tyler Graham. 


Thanks for reading folks.  So what do you think? Share your thoughts in the comments.  

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Chika Obih is a certified holistic nutrition consultant; blogger; and founder of Chika Obih Wellness based in Oakland, CA and offers consulting services virtually, in-person or by phone. Chika is passionate about empowering people to take charge of their own health utilizing the power of wholesome, clean foods and fun holistic lifestyle solutions.  Contact Chika today to set up your free consultation.

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High Fructose Corn Syrup and Obesity: No Accident

HFCS linked to Obesity

High fructose corn syrup linked to Obesity

Modern science has produced a popular, inexpensive, highly concentrated product synthesized from cornstarch and is widely used in the food industry, most notably as the primary sweetener in soft drinks and baked goods.  What is this product?  High-fructose corn syrup (HFCS).

The usage of HFCS has increased 1000% between 1970 when it entered our food supply, and 1990.  This vast increase in usage far surpasses that of any other food or food group and is largely due to its incredibly low price.  In their insatiable hunger for higher profits, food manufacturers add increasing amounts of HFCS to their products in ever-larger portion sizes.  Instead of the once common eight-ounce soft drink, we are now more likely to be bombarded with a twenty ounce (or larger) size.

The sky-rocketing inclusion of HFCS in our foods has paralleled America’s rapid increase in obesity.  A 2004 study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition reported that HFCS and fructose in general, metabolizes differently than glucose (starches) and sucrose (table sugar).  This study revealed that fructose does not elicit a response from insulin, does not increase leptin production, and does not suppress ghrelin (hunger triggering hormone) production.  In other words, fructose breaks the hormonal process that signals satiation and helps regulate food intake and body weight.  Instead, fructose is sent directly to the liver, bypassing the intermediary breakdown steps that occur with sucrose.  This is hugely bad!  The liver’s response to the fructose is to generate new fat cells, which it then dumps into the bloodstream as triglycerides.

Another study came to the same conclusion: a diet high in fructose elevates triglyceride levels shortly after eating far more significantly than a diet high in sucrose.  The affects:  muscles bombarded by triglycerides will develop insulin resistance quickly (key symptom of Type II Diabetics).

Key take away:  high fructose corn syrup intake changes the way we metabolize fats, causing us to store fat and burn sugar therefore causing weight gain. 

Want to learn more about the dangers of sugar and fructose?  Dr. Robert Lustig brilliantly illustrates it’s affect in his famous presentation Sugar: The Bitter Truth.  


Thanks for reading folks.  So what do you think? Share your thoughts in the comments.  

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