There is no question that healthier food and drink selections have their benefits in terms of antioxidant and nutrient intake. They can help combat heart disease, cancer, and muscle and joint problems as well as lethargy, sleep problems and even the common cold. But, some of the healthiest foods are actually causing health problems in other ways - by increasing body fat stores and giving the body excess macronutrients per serving, thereby increasing risk for cardiovascular disease, the nation's #1 killer.
Below is a list of five very healthy foods that can sneak up on you and make you put on excess bodyfat if you aren't careful about your meal timing and food portions:
#5: Houmous (sometimes spelled 'hummus', 'humus' and in other ways)
There is no debating that houmous is full of healthful components: amino acids, vitamins, minerals, and omega-3s all make this an excellent food of choice in many ways. But, to enjoy this food it is important to keep an eye on the amount you're taking in! Depending upon your body size, just a few tablespoons generally provide for all the dietary fat you'll need for an entire meal. So, be careful how much you have and what you consume along with it. Dip a few too many tims and you're likely doing yourself more harm than you are good.
While loaded in nutrients, quinoa should be consumed with some level of caution: This tasty, natural food contains almost five times more carbohydrate content than it does protein content. This ratio of carbohydrate to protein isn't necessarily suggested for those concerned about body composition and weight management, so when eating quinoa, be sure to keep your intake low and balance it out with a high-protein, lower-carbohydrate food such as fish, eggs, or a protein shake. A Perfect Personal Training health coach or nutritonist will be happy to help you sort out what's most appropriate for your own body and fitness goals.
The people of Japan live longer than those in almost any other part of the world. One of the factors contributing to these long longspans seems to be their high intake of omega-3 fatty acids, found in sushi among other foods common to the Japanese. However, like quinoa, this is another healthy food with an undesireable protein-to-carbohydrate ratio for weight maintenence and for the healthy ideal for body composition. While there are a few exceptions, such as some sushi dishes containing fair amounts of egg or tuna, sushi generally contains roughly five to nine times more carbohydrate than it does protein. Get to know the caloric contents of your favorite sushi dish and plan to complement this high-carbohydrate food accordingly.
#2: Almond Butter
We always encourage a variety of heathy foods, but once again, you really need to watch your intake with this one: Roughly 80% of its calories come from dietary fat, making almond butter a good source of healthy fat, but a poor source of much else. If you're on a fat loss plan, then chances are good that just one tablespoon is all the fat you'll need for an entire meal. Combine with non-fat foods to keep this healthy, tasty food from reversing your weight management efforts and leave you wondering what went wrong the next time you assess your progress.
Granola, as well as many of the healthier breakfast cereals, all suffer from what we call "low-protein-itis". Sure, there is a healthy combination of dietary fat and complex carbs, but the protein-to-carb ratio remains too low to maintain the fat-burning metabolic engine we need to keep trim. So, limit granola to a serving or two (depending upon your body size, activities, and fitness goals) and combine with a strong protein source that is minimal in carbs and fats. Not only will this better support your muscles and joints but you'll feel more full and satisfied afterward.
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