For a very long time, people have believed, and have blamed, the wrong culprit. Fats aren’t what is killing us, sugars are. This isn’t to say that all fats in all quantities are good, just that they may not be the monsters they were made out to be. However, the same cannot be said about sugars. Simple sugar is found in many of the foods we eat, and they also come with an added dollop of preservatives. All of these are bad for health. Perhaps, because it is easier to see the damage done by fats, we have accepted that they are bad for us. Here are a few low fat foods that are actually destroying your health in other ways:
Is cereal your standard, everyday breakfast? If so, it is time to reconsider that choice. Even cereal brands that position themselves as low-fat are not entirely healthy. They compensate for the lack of fats, and thus the lack of taste, with sugars. Low in fat, not so low on calories.1
2. Baked Chips
Are baked chips better than fried chips? They do have lesser fats than the fried version, but they still do have some trans fats which are bad for the body. Also, baked chips compensate for the loss in taste with extra salt and flavoring agents. Salt interferes with the blood pressure, and some flavoring agents are not derived naturally.2
3. Low Fat Baked Foods
Foods such as bread in general have some sugar in them. Also, low fat muffins and other such products often have much higher sugar levels than their regular counterparts. The rule of thumb here seems to be to compensate for all fats with sugar. And true to that sentiment, baked goods contain both sugar and high fructose corn syrup in much higher amounts.3
4. Low Fat Frozen Goods
Who doesn’t crave a good ice cream once in awhile? Sometimes, it feels like grabbing the low fat option is great. However, the problem with these options is that we often end up eating more portions than we ordinarily would. This causes us to pile on more calories than we would want to, thus defeating the purpose of low fat foods altogether.
5. Low Fat Dressings
Salad dressings that are touted as low fat often sell more often than creamy dressings full of oil. The problem with them arises because they often have more artificial flavors than regular dressings. It is the addition of chemicals that is giving them that lovely taste. Also, you miss your healthy dose of olive oil.4 The best alternative- make your own salad dressing.
6. Low Fat Oils
Isn’t that an oxymoron in itself? However, some plant oils often have low-fat, low-saturated fat and other such labels on their packaging. While this may or may not be true, what is true is that plant oils such as canola, soybean and corn oil have a very high percentage of omega 6 fats. These are the bad fatty acids, the ones that cause our blood vessels to rupture and inflame. Instead of falling for the tag, it may be better to switch to healthy oils such as olive and coconut entirely.5
Note that these are just some of the many many foods out there that are pushed out as being fat free. When you buy something for its low fat content, make sure you read the nutrition label carefully for signs of sugars, trans fats and other compounds that can harm your health much more severely than fat ever can.
|↑1||Children’s Cereals: Cereals contain far more sugar than experts recommend. Environmental Working Group.|
|↑2||Survey Data on Acrylamide in Food: Individual Food Products. Food And Drugs Authority.|
|↑3||Blueberry Muffin. Sky Blue Foods.|
|↑4||Schwingshackl, Lukas, and Georg Hoffmann. “Monounsaturated fatty acids, olive oil and health status: a systematic review and meta-analysis of cohort studies.” Lipids in health and disease 13, no. 1 (2014): 154.|
|↑5||Heart surgeon speaks out on what really causes heart disease. Signs Of The Times|