Foods | What foods we really should not be eating

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We are told every day what we should eat to maintain our health and well being. But to stay on track, we should know what foods can be toxic to our diets.

Reports warning about the dangers of specific foods – including the recent controversial WHO study on processed meat – may influence consumer decisions for a short time, but they rarely last.

Knowing what to stay away from to maintain a healthy diet is becoming increasingly difficult, especially in the face of such conflicting reports.

But there are some โ€˜badโ€™ foods that have traditionally been, and will always be, detrimental to your healthy eating routine.

Margarine is often put in this bad category. The vegetable oils that make up many margarines have been hydrogenated so that they will stay solid at room temperature, thus meaning they are rich in trans fats. Such fats, of course, can lead to a buildup of cholesterol in the arteries, which can increase your risk for heart attacks and strokes.

Soft drinks is continuously being attributed to high obesity levels in children. Such beverages raise the levels of blood sugar in the body, and can lead to insulin resistance as well as impacting your waistline.

Similarly, artificial sweeteners can have the same negative impact. It is better to use small amounts of regular sugar, or simply cut it out of your diet overall.

Popcorn, especially the lighter versions, are the treat of choice for many of us. However, research has shown that the lining of the popcorn bag itself can be damaging. The bag contains a chemical called perfluorooctanoic acid(PFOA) which has been associated with thyroid gland disorders, cancer and lung disease.

Finally, stay away from instant noodles if you want to stay healthy. They are loaded with calories, as well as high levels of sodium.

Sodium diets are linked to increased blood pressure, which in turn is a major risk for heart attacks and strokes.