People who are on a reduction diet or simply taking care of their health or figure often reach for products with the words „fit”, „light”, „without sugar”. What really lies behind these terms? Is it true and we reach for a product that is healthy and conducive to our figure, or only to the creation of marketing experts? Let’s get to know the secrets of some of the most popular snack food groups.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
- Chocolate bars and muesli
- Taste water
- Ready salads
Products that in their original form are a valuable source of calcium, protein and probiotic bacteria – in the fit version, which is considered good for those who care about their figure, does not necessarily promote health.
The elimination of fat from yoghurt reduces the absorption of calcium and fat-soluble vitamins. Therefore, choose a skim yoghurt with at least 1.5-2% fat content, not 0%.
In addition, manufacturers often add sugar or glucose-fructose syrup to improve the taste of the product. These ingredients not only affect the caloric value, significantly raising it, but also increase the glycemic index, raise the blood sugar level faster than regular yoghurt. We feel hungry faster and more often reach for other snacks. Particular attention should be paid to fruit-containing yoghurts.
Manufacturers often add colorants to them, such as cochineal, beetroot, carrot or nettle concentrate. They give a nice color, but they are not able to replace the real fruit batch, which is a source of vitamins.
It’s definitely better to buy natural yoghurt and add your own favorite fruit to it.
It’s also worth paying attention to the presence of thickening substances. Contrary to appearances, the more velvety yoghurt, the worse. The natural phenomenon is the stratification of yoghurt. The addition of emulsifiers and thickeners by the producer causes a consistency change that is more pleasing to the eye, but definitely worse in terms of nutritional value. So let’s look for yoghurt without the addition of pectins, guar gum, gelatin or magnesium phosphate.
So how do you choose a good yoghurt?
Let’s reach for the product
– with the shortest possible composition;
– with probiotic bacteria;
– with a minimum fat content of 1,5%;
– no added sugar and glucose-fructose syrup;
– without thickeners;
– choose natural yoghurts more often than fruit ones. We can add fresh fruit, nuts or seeds to natural yoghurt.
- Chocolate bars and muesli
Snack bars are currently a group of products that most often has the fashionable addition of „fit”, „without sugar” on the label. Snack bars are advertised as great meal replacements, healthy snacks that provide us with energy for a long time and on the occasion of many vitamins and minerals. The most popular are protein bars, which are recommended especially for physically active or busy people who don’t have time to cook a standard meal. Unfortunately, but contrary to the assurances of the producers, products commonly available on store shelves are not able to replace a meal.
These bars contain a lot of ingredients that should raise our caution:
– glucose-fructose syrup – reduces insulin sensitivity of the cells, which increases the risk of diabetes. In addition, fructose causes lipidogram disturbances – it reduces the concentration of the beneficial HDL fraction in favour of the LDL fraction, which increases the risk of cardiovascular diseases. In addition, fructose in combination with glucose increases the amount of uric acid in the blood, which promotes the formation of kidney stones and gout. Glucose-fructose syrup also disturbs the functioning of the center of hunger and satiety by reducing the production of leptin, a hormone of satiety. As a result, people who eat a lot of products rich in this syrup, despite eating a large amount of food, feel hungry and have a big appetite. That is why obesity develops so often.
It should be remembered that pure fructose alone does not cause such negative effects. Only the combination of it with glucose intensifies the synthesis of fats, which in a straight way leads to an increase in body weight. So don’t be afraid of fresh fruit – these certainly will not lead to such an effect, but only enrich our diet with valuable vitamins, minerals and fiber;
– trans fatty acid isomers – trans isomers have proven pro-inflammatory, especially on the walls of blood vessels. They promote the development of cardiovascular diseases, type II diabetes, heart attacks and strokes. They cause lipidogram disorders – they reduce the amount of HDL cholesterol, and raise the LDL. In addition, they promote the formation of some types of cancer, especially breast and prostate. it’s worth remembering that the term „vegetable fat” usually contains palm oil, which is the cheapest, and therefore the most popular fat added to food. Unfortunately, its quality and composition are among the worse among available food fats and promote the formation of, for example, atherosclerosis;
– raising substances – at the recommended dose don’t cause side effects. It should be remembered, however, that people suffering from intestinal dysfunction, such as IBS, as well as young children should avoid scarifiers due to the acceleration of intestinal peristalsis, and thus the possibility of inducing diarrhea;
– polyols – mainly sorbitol, but also xylitol, mannitol. They give a sweet taste, maintain moisture and the correct consistency of the product.
Unfortunately, sorbitol in a large dose disturbs intestinal peristalsis, accelerating it and showing laxative effects. In addition, it may impair the function of the kidneys, which is why diabetics and people with already diagnosed kidney diseases should be especially careful with it. Interestingly, pure xylitol exhibits anticaries and cooling action for chewing gums. In the case of sweet snacks, however, this effect is slight, because it’s abolished by the presence of other ingredients, e.g. glucose-fructose syrup. Mannitol, on the other hand, has a diuretic effect. It can therefore put additional strain on the kidneys of people who suffer from any issues with them. For healthy people, therefore, it’s worth paying attention to the correct supply of liquids if we eat products with mannitol;
– caramelised fruits – contain a lot of sugar, which increase the calorific value of the product. Sometimes the fruits are caramelized with the addition of fat, which additionally increases the caloric value of snacks and the supply of trans fats. it’s therefore worth giving up buying ready-made bars and try to make them yourself at home;
– preservatives – agents that can cause allergic reactions, disrupt the nervous system, exacerbate the symptoms of ADHD in children;
We present an alternative, homemade and above all healthy recipe for snack bars.
– half a glass of roasted oatmeal
– half a glass of wholegrain flour
– 1 grated apple
– 2 bananas
– 2 tablespoons of dried cranberries
– 2 tablespoons of goji berries
– 1 tablespoon of honey
– 1 tablespoon of cocoa
– 1 egg
– 2 spoons of chopped nuts, for example, hazelnuts or Italian
– a little milk to make the dough
Mix all ingredients, knead.
Arrange the mass on a rectangular plate lined with baking paper.
Bake about 20 minutes at 180-200 degrees.
Cut into bars shaped like candy bars.
For similar reasons, we should avoid muesli type flakes, which are advertised as the perfect meal for breakfast. Unfortunately, the high content of sugar and glucose-fructose syrup increases the meal’s GI. The level of sugar in the blood rises rapidly, but falls as fast and we feel hungry again.
it’s worth reaching for unprocessed oatmeal, buckwheat or barley flakes. Just add fresh fruit, a flavoring in the form of cocoa or cinnamon, or honey to them. We will get a quick and tasty meal without unnecessary chemical additives.
The following proposal will certainly fall out to fans of sweet breakfasts.
– 6 tablespoons of oatmeal
– a glass of soya milk
– 2 spoons of hazelnuts
– 2 tablespoons of dried apricots
– 2 cubes of dark chocolate with a cocoa content above 70%
– 1 banana
Pour the boiling water over oatmeal and leave to swell. Then add soy milk, nuts, apricots, banana. Sprinkle with grated chocolate.
- Taste water
Consumers are bombarded with slogans „Drink at least 8 glasses of water a day”, „Drink at least 1.5 liters of water a day”. it’s true that we need to care for the proper hydration of the body to maintain the state of homeostasis. It’s not true, however, that every water is good. Be especially careful when reaching for the flavored waters.
– sugar or glucose-fructose syrup – they increase the caloricity of water up to 70 kcal per glass of water. In a simple account, drinking 1.5 liters of water a day instead of providing the body with adequate hydration, we provide about 400 extra calories! It not only affects our figure adversely, but also burdens our kidneys;
– aromas – to give a beautiful scent, but at the same time mask the lack of any added fruit juice. If the juice is present, it’s usually in the amount of 100 percent and is made from concentrated juice. Such water will not provide us with what fruits provide – vitamins;
– preservatives – most often potassium sorbate and sodium benzoate. They cause an allergic reaction, irritate the stomach and intestinal mucosa and are suspected of being carcinogenic. Increased caution should especially be observed by allergy sufferers, including those allergic to aspirin;
– sweeteners – most commonly acesulfame K, aspartame, saccharin – aspartame has an irritating effect on the digestive system, carcinogenic, may cause damage to the nervous system. In addition, after eating it may be mood disorders, such as excitement, frustration, headaches.
In turn, acesulfame K, can cause chromosomal damage, and thus impair the body’s cells and their functions.
Saccharin has a proven carcinogenic effect and may promote the development of allergic reactions and proteinuria.
If you don’t like ordinary water, you can add pieces of your favorite fruits, such as oranges, lemons and raspberries. The addition of mint leaves enhances the cooling effect and gives a refreshing taste. If we want to feel a bit of sweetness, we can add a teaspoon of natural honey. This is very simple to prepare and definitely healthier than the flavored water from the store.
Below we present our refreshing proposal for summer heat.
– mineral water 1 liter
– a handful of mint leaves
– 3 slices of lemon
– 5 strawberries
– 1 teaspoon of lime honey
Wash the fruit, cut into slices. Add all ingredients to the water.
- Ready salads
Most people associate a salad with something healthy, which will always bring us beneficial health effects. There are a lot of reasons for this, but only if we prepare the salad ourselves, and we will not reach for ready-made, shop-type products.
First of all, the addition, which most often destroys the composition of the salad, are sauces. They contain mainly mayonnaise, which makes the caloricity of such a meal very high. What we can find in mayonnaise sauce:
They are generally safe for health, however, people struggling with eczema and allergies may experience discomfort after eating it. There may also be gastrointestinal complaints, because e.g. guar gum swells in the gastrointestinal tract, and in excess or in sensitive persons causes bloating or diarrhea.
It’s definitely better to spend a little time and make your favorite salad yourself. Made of fresh vegetables, poured with yoghurt sauce or vinegret will be definitely healthier and better for the figure than its store counterpart.
It’s worth being aware consumers. Fashionable names, colorful packaging and catchy slogans unfortunately sometimes contain products of dubious quality. For your own health, you should read the labels of products, check and inquire whether the product advertised as healthy, conducive to our figure and intensifying the effects of training is indeed.
Therefore, let’s choose products present in our diet with head and some distance. Remember – not every product advertised as healthy really is.
Awareness and knowledge will allow us to choose the best for our health and our slim body.