Dr. Joseph Mercola, who has long studied the impact of diet on our health, compiled a list of five of the worst foods he believes we can eat.
One thing that never ceases to amaze is how little knowledge and interest many people show when it comes to how the food they consume also affects their health, both physically and mentally. People are usually very careful about the type of food they give to their pets or about filling their cars with the right kind of fuel, but when it comes to what they put into their own bodies, they are often not nearly as cautious. Upon closer examination, this can be seen from several perspectives. First, most people tend to adopt eating habits they grew up with even into adulthood. They are strongly influenced by the dietary habits their parents exhibited. Additionally, food is the most common way for people to comfort themselves. It is very easy to go to the refrigerator and take what is available or order a pizza when one is frustrated and wants some stimulation to temporarily escape boredom.
A third factor, of course, is that it is in the interests of both the food industry and the power elite to foist unhealthy food on us. Partly because it is often much cheaper to produce and partly because it contributes to keeping us dumbed down so we don’t think clearly. (1) In a time when most people are more or less surrounded and, unfortunately, hypnotized by advertising that inundates them with unnecessary and unhealthy products, and when many doctors seem to be indoctrinated with the power elite’s and big industry’s consensus slogans about what is ”healthy”, it is still refreshing to see that more and more people in the health field have begun to understand the connection between diet, health, and behavior and have not been duped by various paid reports or bribed to promote unhealthy products. American doctor Joseph Mercola, for example, has produced the documentary Sweet Remedy about how people are not only dumbed down by food additives but also become sick from them.
Dr. Mercola has also compiled a list of the five worst ”foods” that he believes a person can consume. The five ”foods” he warns against are as follows:
Donuts are not only fried, which is bad enough, but they are also loaded with sugar and white flour, both of which are unhealthy. Most donuts also contain trans fats, which make matters worse. Most store-bought donuts consist of 35 to 40 percent trans fats, and an average donut contains about 200 calories, primarily from sugar. Trans fats, found in almost all commercially prepared and fried foods, not only raise harmful LDL cholesterol, Mercola explains, but also lower the heart-friendly HDL cholesterol, which works better when it is higher. Bad trans fats have been linked to heart and vascular diseases, where fatty plaques build up in the heart’s arteries and can lead to a heart attack. When foods are cooked at high temperatures, cancer-causing substances such as acrylamide can also form. From a nutritional and health perspective, donuts are truly terrible, according to Mercola.
Soda is a real troublemaker, and a typical bottle of soda contains about 10 teaspoons of sugar, roughly 50-150 calories, and sometimes even 30 to 55 mg of caffeine. Soda is also loaded with artificial colors and sulfites. Diet soda is even worse as they are filled with harmful artificial sweeteners like aspartame and/or sucralose, and they also increase cravings for sweets. Studies have linked soda to obesity, cavities, osteoporosis, and heart disease. Cola often contains even more sugar in the form of high fructose corn syrup, and high fructose corn syrup often contains a blend of 45 percent glucose and 55 percent fructose, which is particularly unhealthy. When it is ingested, the pancreas quickly starts to create insulin in response, and the liver responds to the insulin increase by converting large amounts of sugar into fat. Consuming large amounts of soda not only increases the risk of obesity and high blood pressure but also diabetes.
Mercola writes that potatoes, in their raw state, are bad enough when consumed due to their simple sugars that quickly convert to glucose, raising insulin levels and harming health. He explains that anything that is fried, even vegetables, contains trans fats and the potentially cancer-causing substance acrylamide. Animal studies have shown that it increases the risk of several types of cancer, and the International Agency for Research on Cancer has assessed that acrylamide is probably carcinogenic to humans as well. The substance has also been linked to nerve damage and other neurotoxic effects, including neurological problems in workers who handle it. The chemical can form in many foods when they are heated to a temperature above 120 degrees. Foods fried in vegetable oils such as canola, corn, and peanut oil are also problematic. Polyunsaturated fats easily become rancid when exposed to oxygen, producing large amounts of harmful free radicals in the body. Mercola recommends coconut oil.
Unsurprisingly, potato chips are also among the most unhealthy foods you can eat. Most types of chips, including corn chips, have high levels of trans fats. Many of them also contain genetically modified ingredients. Even though some companies have taken heed of the reports on the dangers of trans fats and started producing chips without trans fats, the high temperatures used to cook them can still cause the formation of cancer-causing acrylamide. So-called ”natural” chips have become increasingly popular, but it is important to realize that they offer very little in terms of health benefits. A fried, genetically modified corn chip will still wreak havoc in the body, even if it is low in trans fats, according to Dr. Mercola.
Fried and Deep-Fried Foods
Fried shrimp, mussels, oysters, lobster, and so on all have the above-mentioned problems related to trans fats and acrylamide, plus an additional risk of mercury. Shellfish is not uncommonly filled with toxic mercury, and shellfish like shrimp and lobster can also be contaminated with parasites and resistant viruses that may not even be killed with high heat, Mercola writes. Farmed fish and shellfish are unfortunately not much better than wild-caught because they are often a mishmash of antibiotics and other synthetic chemicals. Eating these foods gives you a quadruple dose of toxins: trans fats, acrylamide, mercury, and possibly parasites or viruses, for every bite, says Mercola. He eats wild Alaskan sockeye salmon, which in independent tests has been shown to be almost free of harmful mercury levels and other contaminants. (2)
Today, especially young people, eat frighteningly large amounts of junk food and sweets while often rejecting vegetables and fruits. As a result, they miss out on important minerals and vitamins that the body needs. Many also do not realize the importance of drinking enough water, and especially older people who are prone to becoming dehydrated drink a lot of coffee, which unfortunately drives water out of the body. Of course, exercise and sensible sleeping habits also play a significant role in our health, but it is worth mentioning more than once how important proper nutrition is for our well-being. In these times of colds and viruses, Dr. Mercola also recommends that we take supplements of both vitamin C and D, even though he points out that the best way to get vitamin D is to sunbathe, which, for natural reasons, unfortunately cannot be done very often when living at our latitudes.
(2) The Five Absolute Worst Foods You Can Eat
Michael Delavante, The Five Worst Things You Can Eat