Let’s be honest…we all want to impress our taste buds, which is why we naturally aim to eat foods that hit the spot when it comes to our needy little cravings. But beware of the pre-packaged foods that line the aisles of your grocery store, as their packaging has a tendency to tout their convenience while failing to mention the added sugars and sodium that are lurking beneath the surface of the fancy wording on the box.
We all lead busy lives, but if we want to stay busy and active, we need to eat whole ingredients and natural foods. It is for this reason that we need to be very concerned about the ingredients that are in pre-packaged meals that marketers claim offer convenience and freedom from having to cook.
Sodium is one of those minerals that is impossible to avoid, and while its consumption is essential, most people get far too much, mostly because it is added to mask the flavor of foods that lack taste. Pre-packaged foods have loads of sodium, and the majority of sodium in the American diet actually stems from these packaged, soups, meat dishes, and processed meats and cheeses.
Following closely behind the over consumption of sodium, is sugar, which is often added to already sweet items such as soft drinks, juices, and even meats. Health standards show that women shall avoid taking in more than 100 calories of added sugars per day and men shall take in no more than 155 calories per day. Just remember that every gram of sugar is equivalent to four calories, so it adds up fast. Avoid store bought juices and drinks, and use your sweet stevia flavor drops if you are looking for some major taste, without the many negative effects of sugar.
One of the reasons why pre-packaged meals have a longer life than the fresh options, is the fact that these foods contain trans fat. Sure, it’s great to feel confident that your food will last longer than a couple of days, but do you really want to take in a fat that increases your chance of heart disease, high cholesterol, and stroke? Look at your ingredients before you purchase and remember that if hydrogenated oil is listed as an ingredient, then there are definitely trans fats. This same type of packaged food contains saturated fats, which are unhealthy for the human body. Only seven percent of your daily calories should come from saturated fats, so choose your foods wisely if you want to remain healthful and energetic.
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