This might surprise you, but did you know that some of the foods we consider healthy are actually not healthy?

Many people are serious about their health and are committed to eating only healthy food. But then again, some foods have dirty secrets and must be avoided. 

Below we’ve listed the top 10 foods that are actually bad for your health. 

Margarine

Check your fridge and see if you have margarine. If you have, then you might want to throw that away now. Yes, NOW.  

Several people praise margarine because of its made of vegetable oil, meaning it contains a healthy dose of good fats. While this is true, it doesn’t change the fact that it’s loaded with trans fats, which are known to contribute to heart disease. 

There are also claims that trans fats are highly inflammatory.  

Eliminating margarine from your kitchen may mean that you need to cut off baked goods, doughnuts, and other high-carb foods. 

What’s more disturbing about margarine is that the amount of trans fats it has are not always as advertised. 

Some margarine products claim they have 0 trans fat when, in actuality, they can contain up to 0.5 grams of trans fat. 

The bottom line is that trans fat must not have room in our body, health-wise. So instead of using margarine, you can use extra virgin olive oil for salad dressings and extra virgin coconut oil for any cooking that requires oil. 

The coconut oil contains a healthy dose of fatty acids, which are known to help balance cholesterol levels. 

Artificial Sweeteners

Many people, especially those who are trying to reduce their sugar and calorie intake, turn to artificial sweeteners. 

Foods and beverages in the market that are advertised as sugar-free or diet (like sodas and baked goods) use artificial sweeteners. 

A sugar substitute could be anything that gives off sweet taste except regular sugar (or sucrose). There’s a lot of sugar substitute out there, and artificial sweeteners are just one of the many types. 

Here are some of the processed foods that widely use synthetic sugar substitutes:

  • Soft drinks
  • Baked goods
  • Puddings
  • Candy
  • Jams and jellies
  • Canned goods
  • Dairy products

If you have any of these, then you might best disregard them already. 

Artificial sweeteners, though widely tolerated, impose potential risks. Some claim that artificial sweeteners can increase appetite and therefore promote weight gain. 

In a 2010 study published by Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine, it revealed that artificial sweeteners encourage sugar craving and sugar dependence. 

Examinations were also done to prove if artificial sweeteners are associated with obesity

And if you have diabetes, you may quickly turn to sugar substitutes as they offer a sweet taste without increasing your blood sugar levels. However, some studies claim that drinking diet soda is associated with a high risk of developing diabetes. 

Soy

Whether soy is good or bad for health has been a debate for many years. 

Over 90% of soy in the United States is genetically modified. It is also one of the most rapidly rising allergens in the country and is known o harm thyroid function. 

When soy was rising in popularity, experts believed that soy battles obesity, heart disease, and even cancer. Back then, they figured that most people in Asia consumed a lot of soy, and studies backed that Asian people had significantly low rates of heart disease, obesity, and breast cancer compared to the people in the U.S. 

Soy was being praised for a long time until experts have taken a second look. Just because a lot of people that eat soy happen to be healthier than those who don’t eat soy doesn’t necessarily mean that soy is healthy. 

After studying soy, researchers have found that soy contains isoflavones, an estrogen-like compound. Some findings suggested that isoflavones could promote the growth of cancer cells, weaken female fertility, and negatively impact thyroid function. 

Non-Organic Meat and Dairy

Meat from animals that were given antibiotics and hormones during their life cycle is plain unhealthy. 

So the next time you sprint to the market to by meat, choose organic meat. Organic animals are not fed animal by-products. They were also not given antibiotics or growth hormones. They are only supplied with natural ingredients like grass. 

Animal by-products raise controversies. Farmers use them as they are cheaper. After slaughtering an animal, all the inedible parts like the brain, lungs, and feet are reprocessed into food, which is then fed to non-organic livestock. This has contributed to outbreaks of Mad Cow diseases. 

Growth hormones, on the other hand, also imposes a lot of questions. They are being used to help animals grow faster and be ready for slaughter soon. One of the growth hormones that farmers use is steroids, and if you already know it, steroids are harmful. 

If the animal you eat consumed steroids, technically, that means you’re consuming them as well. Growth hormones have been associated with the growth of cancer cells and reproductive problems. 

Non-organic animals are also given large amounts of antibiotics to keep them healthy until slaughter. This raises a lot of problems. Antibiotics stay in the meat, so that means put them into our system as well. 

When our body regularly consumes antibiotics, it would soon get used to it. So when the time comes that we are sick, antibiotics become ineffective because our body has adapted to them already.

Processed Foods with Nitrates

Bacon, salami, sausage, hot dogs, and lunch meats are undeniably delicious. Both young and old enjoy them. But these foods are highly processed and are loaded with unhealthy fat. What’s more, most of them contain high levels of nitrates. 

Nitrates (sodium nitrates) are used as a preservative in processed meats, and for many decades, they have bad PR. Nitrates are believed to increase the risk of heart disease. They damage the blood vessels by making the arteries hard and narrow, which then leads to heart disease. 

Conclusion

There you have it. To be truly healthy, you must be cautious about the food you eat. Remember, whatever you put into your tummy is what you also put into your system. Clearly, not all foods that we consider yummy and healthy aren’t actually nutritious. 

Can you think of any foods that need to be added to this list?