One of the greatest obstacles that people meet when trying to eat healthy foods and lose weight comes in the form of snacks. Somehow, you can’t resist them, and you convince yourself that if you adhere to a well-balanced diet, eating snacks doesn’t have to be such a big deal. Although snacks are widely popular and you’re probably eating chips (or something else) while you’re reading this, there are many things you don’t know. In this article, you’re going to learn more about snacks and, hopefully, get motivated to make some healthier choices.
Pringles are NOT potato chips.
Wait, what? Pringles is, probably, the most well-known potato chips brand in the world, but it turns out, it doesn’t even contain that much potato. Seriously! What most people don’t know is that Pringles contain only 42% potato content. So, what else is there? The remaining 58% account for wheat starch and a mix of flours including rice, potato, and corn. Back in 2008, a London High Court judge has ruled that Pringles should be defined as potato chips, which is you can’t see those exact words on the tube. This just goes to show that when it comes to snacks, what you see is not what you get.
You can get addicted to salt.
Snacks contain way too much salt than it is recommended for daily intake. Excessive consumption of salt is linked to numerous healthy problems, but even scarier is the fact that one can get addicted to salt the same way as drugs or cigarettes. Since sodium is necessary for the proper functioning of the body taking too much can be harmful. Staying within recommended guidelines is the key, but impossible if you keep munching on those snacks all the time.
Your favorite DiGiorno Cheese Stuffed Crust is loaded with saturated fat.
While everyone loves pizza, it’s not the healthiest food in the world. For example, a popular DiGiorno Cheese Stuffed Crust pizza contains 42g of saturated fat. This doesn’t seem a lot, does it? You’ll be shocked to know it accounts for more than two days’ worth of saturated fat. Intake of foods that are high in saturated fat is associated with high cholesterol and coronary heart disease.
Some Doritos have more sodium than potato chips.
Super Bowl is just around the corner and the chances are high you eat Doritos with your family and friends while watching football and the halftime show. This time, you should think twice because not only it belongs among unhealthy snacks, some Doritos contain more sodium than potato chips. For example, 2nd Degree Burn Fiery Buffalo Doritos delivers 380mg per serving. Basically, four handfuls of this chips will exceed your daily sodium consumption.
French fries don’t contain only potato.
Nobody really hates French fries; it’s one of the most commonly consumed fast foods or snacks in the world. However, if you were to go out and order this snack from some fast food chain such as McDonald’s, you should be aware it doesn’t contain potatoes only. They used multiple ingredients to give it the golden color and prolong the shelf life. One such ingredient is dimethylpolysiloxane, used as an anti-foaming agent, usually found in caulking and sealants. The fries also contain TBHQ, petroleum-based, butane-like ingredient, used as a preservative. It is needless to mention fried foods are unhealthy and all that sodium content is, simply, not good for you. If you eat too many French fries, it would be ideal to decrease consumption and relieve cravings.
Some ingredients are yucky.
Although consumers know how these snacks taste, they aren’t familiar with all the ingredients that companies use. Some brands use all sorts of ingredients, to enhance flavors, extend the shelf life, and decrease the overall costs. For instance, ground up carcasses of beetles are often used in snack foods to create shades of red, purple, pink, and so on in candies, fruit juices, ice cream, etc.
Word “natural” on the label is meaningless.
The FDA regulates food production including snacks and it doesn’t monitor closely the words that brands use on the packaging. On the official website, FDA writes that it is difficult to define a food product that is natural because the food has been processed and isn’t considered as the product of the earth anymore. What does this mean? If you see the word “natural” on the snack packaging you should bear in mind that it has no meaning. Most manufacturers use the term “natural flavor”, but it doesn’t mean directly from nature. The taste your snack produces comes, primarily, from chemicals produced in laboratories.
Snacks you eat on a daily basis are heavily processed and harmful for your health. As seen throughout the article, they also contain questionable ingredients, too much salt, and so on. That’s why the safest thing to do is to opt for healthier alternatives.