Fruits, nuts, veggies: we know they’re good for us. But what about the bad foods? The foods we guiltily – and perhaps greedily – eat.
In recent times there seems to be a massive overhaul in how we think about food. Low-fat diets – out the window; the decades-long war on saturated fat – a quick-paced retreat. Now sugar is public enemy number one.
Yet even now, there’s so many myths and misconceptions about food: there’s always an everyday villain and a food, once eaten, that will balance any bad food choices.
For some foods, their bad reputation precedes them; ingrained into the British psyche: eat me at your peril. Eating it, you justify to yourself: I only have it every so often; once in a while isn’t bad for you; I’ll be good for the rest of the week.
But now, new research has shown that some of our ‘bad’ foods might not be as bad for us as we once thought. On the contrary, adding these foods more regularly to our diet could actually be beneficial.
Intrigued? Read on…
Bad Foods: Beef
We’ve been tucking into meat for a few million years now but beef has long borne the brunt of the perceived health risks of eating red meat. High in saturated fat, beef has been seen as a contributing factor towards heart disease and diabetes.
Now the saturated fat research of the ‘70s and ‘80s has been somewhat debunked, we now know eating unprocessed red meat like beef is perfectly healthy. Moreover, raw ground beef is, in fact, high in protein and contains large amounts of vitamin B12, B3, B6, iron, zinc and essential mineral selenium.
We reckon with all that goodness, it’s time for a cheeseburger.
Bad Foods: Bacon
Whilst bacon is a processed meat, it’s also loaded with good fats. It’s high in saturated fat (around 40%) as well as oleic acid: the same fatty acid that olive oil is praised for. Plus, bacon is pretty nutritious - there’s lots of high quality animal protein; vitamins B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B12 with decent amounts of iron, magnesium, zinc and potassium.
We’re not saying start a 100% bacon-diet, but you shouldn’t feel guilty for tucking into a bacon butty.
Bad Foods: Butter
Another old favourite. Butter has been linked to a multitude of diseases – obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure – you name it. But butter is making a comeback – especially the grass-fed variety.
It’s rich in fat soluble vitamins A, E, K2 and high in saturated fat – which helps raise the body’s good cholesterol. Butter also contains fatty acids butyrate and conjugated linoleic acid, which are anti-inflammatories. Some studies show that these fatty acids can help prevent weight gain. Bonus. Plus it’s udderly delicious.
Interested in food? Read our next post about the Gluten-Free Con.