No more parathas. Only corn flakes for breakfast.
No more full fat milk. Only soya milk every morning.
No more sweets. Only zero calorie artificial sweetener for dessert.
No more coke. Only diet coke at a movie break.
And yet children are over-weight these days. Juvenile diabetes & childhood obesity is on an alarming rise. Are the well-marketed “Health Foods” making you fitter Or fatter?
Deepa, a mother of a 10-year old son who weighs about 40 kgs cried – “How much more healthier can it get?” Feeding children, tweens & teens has never been easy. The shift from regular snacking options to a healthier one takes enormous effort. Yet, if there is no marked difference; rather doing more bad than good, what is going wrong?
What you will read further is shocking but true. The marketers manipulate to sell products that are highly profitable. So do not get caught in the advertising gimmicks. The artificial foods do more harm to your system than good. Let’s look at some of the commonly foods you relish.
- Cornflakes – I remember as a kid, Cornflakes was my favourite snack soon after I came back from school or a quick fix for my mother in the morning if she was over-loaded with work on some days. Cold milk with fine chopped banana & apple along with a handful of almonds and grapes was as heavenly as you could imagine. But little did I know the truth behind it. “Corn” flakes is loaded with sugar & corn syrup that contains very high amounts of sugar. While you may end up over-eating considering it to be a healthier option, you are prone to diabetes because obesity causes resistance to insulin production. The high Glycemic Index in cornflakes promotes fat storage which only adds tyres to your tummy.
- Soya Milk – Soya is often marketed as a “superfood” with substantial health benefits. It is one of the highest sources of proteins if you are a vegan, But EVERYTHING ELSE IS NOT TRUE. It can also become hazardous to your body if it has not been fermented well. It can cause thyroid, hormonal imbalance (increases estrogen & decreases progesterone levels) & thus affects fertility in adults. Most importantly it may contain toxins which act as anti-nutrients that can interfere with the absorption of essential vitamins & minerals in the body. The key learning is that minimize the consumption of soya in your daily diet.
- Artificial Sweeteners – As the word suggests “Artificial” – there is ABSOLUTELY NOTHING NATURAL & GOOD ABOUT IT. Research has proved that our body is made to consume anything natural. As the famous saying goes, “If it is made from a plant, eat it. If it is made at a plant, don’t.” The body understands the natural constituents of sugar & knows how to deal with it. On the contrary it treats the alien artificial sugar like an enemy & starts fighting against it. These artificial sweeteners are known to increase your appetite. Since you feel that they are calorie-free, you tend to consume more than you otherwise would.
P.S – An interesting research has proved that those who consumed about 2.5-3 litres of water everyday, cause to flush out all the toxins from the body thereby aid in losing weight 35% faster than normal.
- Diet Cola – Consuming Diet Cola is worse than normal cola. Do you want to know why?
Cola = High Fructose Corn Sugar Syrup + Carbonated Water + Preservative + Caffeine + Caramel Color + Phosphoric Acid
Diet Cola = Everything above + Aspartame (Artificial Sweetener) – Sugar (which is good) + Citric Acid + Potassium Benzoate
Hence, diet cola will save you from teeth decay caused due to the sugar residual on your teeth & will definitely save on the 100 calories. But, Aspartame has been linked to cancer & neurological problems. Phosphoric acid contributes to leaching of calcium from the bones thus causing osteoporosis. If Aspartame was proved to be harmless, diet soda is probably better than normal soda. But since people tend to feel that diet cola is not harmful, they tend to binge on snacks & coke about 28% more, assuming that it is healthier than the normal junk. A plethora of studies have proved that diet soda increases the risk of heart attack by about 45-50% over a long period of time. Now you know which is better of the two devils.
The same holds good in the case of the canned fruit juices. ‘Looks can be deceptive’. Heard that before? These canned juices are packed with calories. You will end up putting on more weight because the consumption of natural sugar in the fruit goes up 3X-4X times. Moreover, the processing of fruits kills the phytonutrients which shields you from various diseases and destroys the fibre which is essential in weight loss. Do you still want to gulp down those calories & sugar.
Most foodies feel that “Diet” is another word for “Die”. Because a majority of the tasty things we love are unhealthy & hence forbidden. Switch to normal healthy foods that your grandparents used to eat. They were definitely healthier than us. You are allowed to eat everything occasionally in moderation. Make healthy choices. Because children learn more from what they see than what they are taught. Be their role-model. They are great imitators. So give them something great to imitate.