10 Unhealthy Foods to Avoid

Filed Under: Heart Health, General Health, Food and Nutrition
Last Reviewed 06/10/2015

10 Unhealthy Foods to Avoid

As a cardiologist, I’m often asked if there are certain foods that should be on the “do not eat” list. I’d have to say yes, and no. Yes, there are several foods that you should avoid most of the time—since they can wreak havoc on both your heart and your health in general. But you don’t have to avoid them all the time when eating healthier. Instead, these are foods you should limit yourself to eating about three or four times a year, for example when you’re at a Yankee game (at least that’s my favorite team), NFL football game or at the beach on vacation.

Foods To (Mostly) Avoid When Eating Healthier

  • Hot dogs. While they might be popular with Americans, hot dogs are loaded with nitrates, nitrites, and salt. If you love hot dogs too much to avoid them, I suggest opting for nitrite-free organic hot dogs.

  • Deep-fried foods. While many fast food establishments have removed trans fats from their cooking methods, any type of deep frying isn't good for your heart or your health. For example, with fish deep frying completely negates the healing power of fish. Meanwhile, studies have shown that eating baked or broiled fish, especially wild caught salmon, gives you vital health-boosting omega-3s.

  • Flame-broiled fast food chicken. Many fast food establishments tout their broiled chicken as being a healthier alternative to fried. But many fast food flame broiled chicken meals contain over 1,200 mg of sodium, which is way more than anyone should eat in a single meal.

  • White flour. Your body converts white flour to sugar, which spikes your blood sugar and contributes to inflammation. When eating healthier, you want to opt for whole wheat. Or, better yet look for glucose-free options like quinoa.

  • SugarAgain, it spikes your blood sugar and contributes to inflammation. If you want to sweeten your coffee or tea, opt for ribose or Stevia instead.

  • Veal. It’s one of the most inflammatory foods you can eat, and inflammation is at the root of heart disease.

  • Dehydrated or canned soups. With any soup, you want to check the label carefully because many of them are loaded with sodium.

  • Sherbet. Many people opt for sherbet over ice cream thinking it's healthier. But, believe it or not, you’re better off with the ice cream since it contains fat which slows down your insulin response.

Now it’s your turn: Have you find a healthier alternative to any of these foods? 

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DISCLAIMER: The content of DrSinatra.com is offered on an informational basis only, and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the guidance of a qualified health provider before making any adjustment to a medication or treatment you are currently using, and/or starting any new medication or treatment. All recommendations are "generally informational" and not specifically applicable to any individual's medical problems, concerns and/or needs.

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