4 Seemingly Healthy Foods With Lurking Dangers

Continuing from my last post where I’m working eating healthy, I managed to avoid the chips yesterday.
So right now it’s Chips Vs Me: 0/1 =)

Here’s 4 foods often perceived as healthy foods but lurk with dangers.

1. Strawberries.

Ok don’t yell at me. I know they’re beautiful, juicy and yummy.
What’s there not to love about strawberries?
How can something so delicious be dangerous at all?

They are sprayed with insecticides and being without a skin layer that you can peel off, the strawberries absorb the pesticides sprayed on them.

In a study, there were 13 pesticides found on strawberries!

Sure they are yummy and attractive but there're layers of pesticides on them!

Sure they are yummy and attractive but there’re layers of pesticides on them!

Do: Organic Strawberries are probably safer. Buy those if your budget allows. But realize organic doesn’t mean it is pesticide free. It just means they use organice pesticides, which may be less dangerous.
Tip: If you want to eat regular strawberries, as a precaution, wash them and brush them gently with a mushroom brush. That may help to remove some of the pesticides on the surface. But it still doesn’t help remove the pesticides that have been absorbed.

2. Sprouts & Alfalfa

They need moist, warm environments to grow which provides the perfect condition for bacteria and germs to grow.
Added to the danger, is that manure is often used in growing sprouts and alfalfa.
Sprouts are considered one of the foods most likely to harbor pathogens like E. coli and salmonella.
These bacteria will make you very sick. If it’s a severe strain, may even cause organ damage or be fatal.

Sprouts are most often responsible for food recalls.
They have been responsible for large-scale outbreaks of food poisoning in the past few years.
Retailers have found it difficult to ensure the safety of any given batch of sprouts.

The danger of sprouts are such a health problem that WalMart and Krogers have stopped selling Sprouts and Alfalfa.
Organic sprouts and alfalfa do not improve your chances and are just as likely to be contaminated.

In fact, half the reported contaminated batches were organically grown products.
Pregnant women, elderly, children and those with weak health should never eat sprouts or alfalfa.

Dos: Refrain from eating raw Sprouts or Alfalfa.
Tip: If you want to eat them, try cooking them to kill any bacteria that may be there.

3. Large Fishes – Swordfish, Tuna

Large fishes live longer and accumulate more mercury. Fishes like Tuna, Swordfish tend to have high  mercury levels. Tuna caught in the Atlantic contains more mercury than those caught in the Pacific.

Imported Swordfish often fished with unsustainable methods causing great environmental damage and other sea life to be killed in the process. As we know, In trying to catch Tuna, Dolphins often get caught and die as collateral damage. Add to that, the increasing popularity and rising demand for Tuna is now resulting in overfishing of Tuna and the Tuna stock is rapidly being depleted.

Many fish are contaminated with mercury and some are way more than tuna.
The general EPA advice is that pregnant and nursing mothers and small children should avoid Shark, Swordfish, King Mackerel, or Tilefish.  The FDA’s monitoring program run since 1990, indicates the mercury contamination in “fresh / frozen” tuna is around 0.38 mg / kg, 0.35 in canned albacore and 0.12 in canned light tuna. Swordfish comes in at 0.98 mg / kg, Tilefish with 1.45 mg / kg

For an average 160 lbs adult, the safely limit is 90 g / week (3 oz) of fresh/frozen tuna, half a can of albacore tuna, 1 1/2 cans of light tuna per week, 2.5 oz of Swordfish or 1.5 oz of Tilefish per week.  This excludes any other fish consumption. So basically this is ALL the fish intake that is safe to eat.

Choose fishes with lower mercury levels. Limit Tuna, Shark, Tilefish,

Choose fishes with lower mercury levels. Limit Tuna, Shark, Swordfish, Tilefish,

Dos: Eat fish in moderation. For adults, keep mercury levels below the minimum reference dose of 0.1mg/ kg/day (or 0.045mg/lb/day) of body weight.
This means for an 160 lb/ 73 kg adult, keep it to 7.3mg per day.
Tip: Eat up to 12 ounces (2 average meals) a week of a variety of fish and shellfish that are lower in mercury. Four of the most commonly eaten seafood low in mercury are shrimp, salmon, pollock, and catfish.

For further information, check out EPA’s health advice on mercury levels in fish.

4. White Chocolate

Pick chocolates with a higher percentage of cocoa for more health benefits!
Pick chocolates with a higher percentage of cocoa for more health benefits!

While cocoa beans contain antioxidants and many other health benefits.
White chocolate doesn’t contain much cocoa and most of it has been heavily processed that there isn’t much antioxidants left.
White chocolate is mostly flavoring, milk and sugar that makes up White Chocolate.

Besides, why pick white chocolate over milk or dark chocolate??
Milk and dark are much tastier!

Do/Tip: Eat chocolate with a higher cocoa level as it has more health benefits.
Dark chocolate has antioxidants and is good for the heart.
Of course, you shouldn’t rely on chocolate alone for these health benefits.



2 thoughts on “4 Seemingly Healthy Foods With Lurking Dangers

  1. Great tips! Please keep them coming.


    Posted by deepthoughttoday | August 29, 2013, 8:55 am

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