The facts don’t lie. Chronic conditions are fast becoming the biggest problem for Western healthcare systems.
In fact, the amount it costs to treat these conditions was $1.1 trillion in 2016. Add in the losses to productivity, and that’s 20 percent of American GDP right there. Yikes!
But it’s not just a problem for our healthcare system, it’s a problem for you.
Yes, a lot of the biggest killers in America are chronic conditions. Heart disease, cancer, Alzheimer’s, diabetes, they’re all there.
And, as I’m sure you know, chronic diseases are heavily linked to lifestyle. And I can think of no bigger lifestyle factor than diet.
The problem is in the US a lot of us eat what I call the standard American diet, or SAD, which is a diet packed full of carbs and sugar.
I can tell you now your risk for these nasty diseases skyrockets when you follow this diet.
High amounts of sugar and carbohydrates are a big factor when it comes to inflammation.
It’s inflammation that makes your immune system overactive and can break up the plaque in your arteries which causes heart attacks.
And let’s not forget, it’s the carbohydrates that put the plaque there in the first place!
Don’t even get me started on diabetes. I can’t even begin to describe the amount of normal, healthy people who have become diabetic because they cram carbohydrates into their body.
This causes their bodies to release a lot of insulin in order to store it. But over time, the body needs more and more insulin to accommodate it. This leads to insulin resistance. Your body simply can’t respond as well as it once did. It’s a form of self- abuse in a way.
It’s why I’m such a big fan of keto –it’s completely the opposite. Instead of carbs, you use fat for energy. You completely bypass the insulin cycle, and it can help you lose weight to boot.
So what kind of foods are the big culprits when it comes to the SAD ‘‘lifestyle?’ Let’s have a look…
1. French Fries
French fries are such an American classic, but we all know they’re not good for us. Along with the hamburger, together they’re the quintessential image of junk food.
Yes, they’re potatoes, but just because it’s a vegetable, it doesn’t make it good. In general, root vegetables aren’t ideal. They’re full of carbohydrates and don’t pack many vitamins and minerals. Add onto that the insane amount of salt you find on them, the fact they’re deep-fat fried and served with sugary sauces, and you have all you need for a damaging food.
2. Sugary drinks
Coca-Cola did something amazing when it comes to business: they successfully trademarked sugar water. Because that’s essentially all it is. Soda is unbelievably sugary.
And it’s not just the big brands like Coca-Cola, Sprite and Fanta. It’s pretty much any fizzy drink. Don’t be fooled by the fruity ones either: they often have the same amount of sugar.
3. Potato chips
Just like fries, potato chips are pure carbs and salt. Salt in moderation is fine, but the sheer amount in chips is gratuitously unhealthy. And, because they’re essentially just potatoes, the flavor variants are mostly artificial. It’s difficult to get a natural barbecue flavor without actual meat…
Candy is just terrible from start to finish. Although the other foods on this list are indeed awful, they usually come with some semblance of nutrients. Candy has none of that. No slow-release carbs or trace of vitamins or minerals. Just pure sugar, flavorings and chemicals.
Take the worst of carbs and the worst of sugar, and you have donuts. When you eat a donut, it’s not high-quality bread. There aren’t any whole grains or seeds with some good things in them. Nope, it’s pretty much just refined, cardboard-tasting white bread.
And then there are the toppings. See my comments on candy above, it’s the same garbage.
I have to apologize in advance to my East Coast friends for this one, but bagels are awful. Sure, they may taste good, but plenty of things that will shorten your life taste good in the short-term. They’re often mass-produced, cheap and refined, and with sugary raisins to boot.
I’m a big fan of butter, especially grass-fed butter. It’s pure fat and the good kind at that. But margarine is a different story. It’s full of processed trans fats as it contains hydrogenated vegetable oil. Of all the fats to avoid, this is public enemy number one.
Good grief, what was the Kellogg Company thinking when it came up with these atrocities? It’s just sugar in a sugary toasted pastry. It’s even Kellogg’s most popular brand in America! Three pop tarts will take you over the daily recommended amount of sugar for a man, and two will do it for a woman.
They have zero nutritional value and are also loaded with high-fructose corn syrup, which is basically poison. And then there are all the wild and wacky flavors which add even more nonsense to the mix.
Popcorn is one of those treat foods that has made something of a ‘health comeback’ recently –magazines such as Men’s Health have said it’s a closet health food.
I assure you, they’re wrong. Popcorn is still corn, and it’s still a pure carb. Unless they’re about to release one that’s filled with spinach, I don’t see why anyone would consider it healthy. Then add toffee, sugar and salt? Those aren’t healthy flavors in anyone’s book…
10. Ice Cream
Ice cream is one of those foods people eat under a false pretense. They think because it has some good things, it’s okay to eat. This is no way to approach food! Milk does have some nutritional value, yes, so why not just drink milk?
Why eat something that is full of sugar, which often comes with a refined carbohydrate-based cone, or is full of sugary sprinkles? Ice cream isn’t for you if you value your health and weight.
The biggest health problems in America are ones intrinsically linked to lifestyle. If you don’t look after your body with the foods you eat, you might end up as another horrible statistic.
Don’t be fooled, just because a food may have some nutritional value, it doesn’t make it ideal. You should reject anything with a high amount of carbs and sugar in it, let alone highly processed and artificial foods. Only then can you truly have the best chance to avoid the perils of heart disease and diabetes.