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Woman eating pizza

Tips For Avoiding Junk Food

Do you ever wonder how many people watched the movie “Supersize Me'” while eating a huge tub of movie popcorn and sipping a large soda? Do you ever wonder how many shook their heads at the follies of the habitual junk food eater while indulging in the very object of their scorn? We all know that practicing is a lot harder than preaching, but the ugly truth is that, if there is anything to be learned from “Supersize Me” it is this: junk food is bad for you. It is physically harmful and physiologically addictive. If you are fed up with being fed up, here are some tips for avoiding junk food.

1. Over 5? Put it down!
If you see more than five ingredients on a food label, leave it out of your shopping cart. The more ingredients a product contains, the greater the likelihood that it contains processed ingredients.

2. Tricolor
According to a 2012 Cornell University study, people have a preference for a plate of food featuring three different items of three different colors. Keep this in mind the next time you reach for a candy bar. Think more along the lines of fruit slices or mixed nuts. This way, you are getting a better balance of nutrients and a variety of tastes.

3. Make other plans
Does your daily schedule include a mid afternoon trip to the snack bar? If so, try to find yourself taking a healthy five minute walk at that time. You will soon find yourself forgetting all about that daily bag of gummies.

4. Fruit for Dessert
If you can’t get through the day without something sweet, no problem! Make a parfait with fruit and Greek yogurt or freeze some grapes for after dinner.

5. Overchew
Adam Melonas, founder of UNREAL candy says, “If you can make people chew more, they eat less.” When you’re picking food, take chew time into consideration. A nice crisp apple will keep your mouth busy for a while, whereas a whole banana can take under a minute to consume. If you’re looking to keep your mouth busy, the apple is a better choice.

6. Learn Gross Facts About Your Food
Ignorance is bliss! The more you know about processed food, the less likely you are to eat it. For example, frozen chicken breast get their “grill marks” from machines containing vegetable oil. Processed food like Kool Aid and breakfast sausage contain BHA, a preservative that Health and Human Services consider a carcinogen. The BBQ flavor in Baked Lays is made with milk and chicken powder and the vitamin D3 in yogurt is made from sheep’s grease.

woman eating healthy food from fridge
7. Keep the Good Stuff Close, keep the bad stuff out
Make sure to have the healthy foods where you can reach them; in the front of the fridge or on countertops. Be aware of foods that trigger junk food binges and don’t buy them.

If you are a junk food junkie, tell us about your struggle, or if you beat junk food, tell us how you did it. Remember, we love to hear all the facts!

Grilled Burgers Patties On The Hot Flaming Charcoal Grill

The Risks Of Eating Charred Food

You’re the guru of the grill. You’ve got your steaks, your burger patties, some salmon, some shish kebabs, and, of course, your veggie patties, and you’re keeping a close eye on each one. The kids like the burgers done rare, so you make sure to turn them quickly, Phil likes his steak done well, so you let it sit a while before flipping it over. Then you notice it. With all you’ve got going on on the Barbie, you weren’t paying attention to that piece of meat at the far end of the grill and its a bit blackened around the edges. You hate to waste food, and you are the responsible party, so you decide to take one for the team and eat it. Whether you’re eating an overdone piece of meat to save it from being discarded or you simply like your food very well done, there are some things you should know about the risks of eating charred food.

Why Is Chard Food Bad For You?
There are chemicals known as heterocyclic amines (HCAs) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. They appear in meat, like pork, fish, beef and poultry that have been grilled over a flame or pan fried. These chemicals have been found to raise the risk of cancer by causing changes in the DNA.

How Do We Know?
There have been experiments showing that rodents whose diet was supplemented with HCAs tended to develop tumors in the prostate, colon, liver, skin, and lungs among others. Similar experiments on rodents found that those that were fed PAHs also developed cancer, specifically, leukemia, lung tumors and tumors affecting the gastrointestinal tract. It is, however, important to note that the doses give to these rodents were about 1,000 times the dose an average person would eat. Because all the variables that go into the cooking of the meat and the subject’s exposure to PAHs and HCAs can come from different sources, studies on humans might not provide a definite answer as to whether there is a certain connection between cancer and well done foods. However, according to detailed questionnaires, researchers did find a reason to believe that eating charred meat was linked to prostate, colorectal, and pancreatic cancer.

How Can You Avoid It
Try not to expose meat directly to a hot metal surface or open flames and try to limit cooking times and high temperatures. Cook meat in a microwave before putting it on the fire, This can lower the formation of HCA by lessening the time the meat is exposed to high heat. Turn the meat over regularly to avoid unsafe chemical from forming. Remove the charred parts of the meat. Avoid using gravy made out of meat dripping, as this can also increase the chances of PAH and HCA exposure. Lastly, relax, master (or mistress) of the meat, as long as those things are in your hands, you can keep everyone safe and cancer free and very happy.


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