We get SO frustrated when we see foods being promoted as healthy when the sad reality is, they are quite the opposite.
The food industry is huge, and spends billions of dollars doing whatever they can to sell their products, often at the expense of the consumer. Many times, their claims are totally misleading.
The truth is that at this time in our lives, we have to be extra careful with what we put in our bodies. After menopause, we are even more prone to inflammation and it becomes harder to balance blood sugar, clear out toxins, and keep our livers and arteries in good shape.
Because of this reality, we want to empower you to make good choices so you can stay healthy and age gracefully.
Avoiding too much sugar and fried foods is obvious. But what about foods that have sneaky advertising? Unfortunately, there are too many to count. In this post, we are sharing 6 of the worst offenders. Ladies, please take these off your shopping list! Normally we are not known to restrict our clients with “NEVER eat this advice,” but these six foods are so damaging, and the labeling so misleading, we would be remiss if we didn’t let you in on this important information.
Watch or read below. Take notes as we do mention a few healthy alternatives! And we would like to know . . . are you eating any of these 6 foods? Let us know in the comments below the video.
Let’s start with breakfast. Chances are you know a bowl of Count Chocula cereal is not a good bet first thing in the morning, but there are some cereals that we see women think are a healthier choice, when in reality they are better off staying on the shelf in the store and out of your pantry.
The number one food to dump is:
1. Conventional or crappy Cereals and Oatmeal: These may look healthy but in fact contain added sugars, artificial sweeteners, and protein isolates.
Don’t be fooled by label claim…
-Fiber claim–“natural source”, “processed”…These are missing the goodness from whole foods than contain fiber and have tons of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
-Protein–“isolated whey or soy” is very processed. Instead go for real protein, like adding hemp seeds.
-Artificial sweeteners (zero sugar)
Homemade is best!
2. Dreadful Diet Drinks: Many turn to diet drinks to avoid the sugar (or calories)- but diet still a major problem. These include diet soda, iced tea, and sports drinks.
Chemicals and artificial sweeteners have too many downfalls to count, including lots of studies that show diet sodas contribute to metabolic syndrome which is a cluster of conditions that occur together, increasing your risk of heart disease, stroke and type 2 diabetes.
All the diet drinks have not only artificial sweeteners but many also have chemical food dyes too that have increased 500 percent in the past 50 years! Some have shown links to certain types of cancers and hyperactivity and behavior problems in children.
Additionally, your insulin spikes regardless. Artificial sweeteners have been shown to stimulate your appetite, increase sugar cravings, and promote fat storage and weight gain. When you eat something sweet – even when it has no calories – your brain is tricked into wanting more calories because your body is not getting enough energy (i.e. calories) to be satisfied. As a result, you keep craving sweets, eating sweets, and gaining weight.
3. Lousy low carb wraps: Beware anytime you see low carb, and look at the ingredients, such as…
–Modified food starch – added for texture and source of fiber. This is super processed and goes through acid treatment, oxidation, bleaching, and many more. This is NOT how you want to get your fiber. You miss out on the benefits of whole real food.
–Caramel: This type is created by heating ammonia and sulfites under high pressure, a process that produces a cancerous substances.
–Sucralose – again back to the artificial sweeteners – is this really necessary in a bread product?
–Hydrogenated soybean oil – the WORST kind of fat for your body – promotes heart disease.
An example of such a wrap is Mission Carb Balance Spinach Herb. It promotes having a lot of spinach, low carb and high fiber…BUT, same amount of modified food starch, hydrogenated oils and sucralose. It also has less than 2% coming from spinach powder, which is negligible. There are also food dyes!! They add blue and yellow dyes to make it green. No thanks!
Instead of these wraps, you can use lettuce wraps. We like Siete brand or Trader Joes almond flour wraps. You can also look for clean brands with just flour, water and salt.
4. Yucky yogurt: In general, yogurt can be very healthy. However, we see so many women eating yogurt that we call yucky yogurt. They contain lots of added sugar, or artificial sweeteners, food dyes, and other added chemicals. Classic examples would be Yoplait or Dannon light. When it comes to dairy, organic and grass fed is best.
We suggest getting plain yogurt and adding up to 1 tsp of your own natural sweetener (honey, maple syrup or monk fruit). You can also add your own fruit. Get organic when possible and grass fed. We also like Siggi’s.
5. Bad Bars: What is easier to grab when you are on the run than a bar? Though convenient, unfortunately many of them are more like glorified candy bars with added sugars, artificial sweeteners, protein isolates, GMOs. So check the ingredients first. Some good alternatives would be IQ or Aloha bars.
6. Poor Protein shakes: We LOVE our smoothies…But the quality of protein powder is crucial.
Many popular brands are loaded with artificial sweeteners – please AVOID these.
Be aware of Asulfame potassium or Ace-K, under the brand name Sunett and Sweet One (Premier Protein is one popular brand we see many of our women using).
The CSPI warns of a link between Ace-K and cancer. There’s also evidence that something called acetoacetamide (created in the body as it breaks Ace-K down) can lead to thyroid damage in lab animals. And don’t forget about the negative effects on the microbiome.
Look for a good quality safe protein powder such as grass fed whey, or a plant based powder that is either plain or sweetened only with a little cane sugar (no more than 4 grams), or with whole leaf stevia or monkfruit. Steph likes Sunwarrior and I am a fan of Genuine Health.
We go into this in more detail with examples and recipes in our PM Meal Mastery program – where we help take the guesswork out of what to eat to support your body, brain, bones and, of course, metabolism during these years of change without spending hours in the kitchen or feeling deprived, hungry, or cranky.