There is no decency in the way junk food companies market.
They only care about profit and seem willing to sacrifice even the children’s health for their own monetary gain.
Here are the 11 biggest lies of the junk food industry.
1. Low-fat or fat-free
One of the side effects of the “war” on fat was a plethora of processed products with reduced amounts of fat.
These products typically have labels saying “low fat”, “reduced fat” or “no fat”.
The problem is that most of these products are unhealthy .
Foods that have had the fat removed usually don’t taste as good as wholegrain versions. Few people want to eat them.
For this reason, food producers load these products with added sugar and other additives.
It is now known that fat has been unfairly demonized, as mounting evidence reveals the dangers of added sugar.
What this means is that “low-fat” foods are often much worse than their “regular” counterparts.
If a product has the words “low fat” or something similar on the label, it probably contains added sweeteners. Keep in mind that these processed foods are not necessarily a healthy choice.
2. Trans fat free
Processed foods usually have “trans fat free” on the label. This doesn’t necessarily have to be true.
Be sure to check the ingredients list. If the word “hydrogenated” appears anywhere on the label, then it contains trans fats.
In fact, it’s not uncommon to find hydrogenated fats in products labeled trans-fat free.
Avoid anything that contains the word “hydrogenated”. Food products labeled trans-fat free can actually contain up to 0.5 grams of trans-fat per serving.
3. Includes whole grains
In recent decades, consumers have been led to believe that whole grains are among the healthiest foods they can eat.
I agree 100% that whole grains are better than refined grains, although there is no evidence that eating whole grains is healthier than no grains at all.
That said, processed foods like cereals often claim to include whole grains. The problem is that whole grains are not always “whole”. The grains were powdered into very fine flour (3Fonte confiável, 4Fonte confiável)
They may contain all of the grain’s ingredients, but resistance to rapid digestion is lost and these grains can raise blood sugar as fast as their refined counterparts. (5Fonte confiável)
Also, even if a product contains small amounts of whole grains, it is likely to contain a ton of other very harmful ingredients like sugar and high fructose corn syrup.
4. Gluten free
Eating a gluten free diet is all the rage these days.
More than 70% of Brazilians adhered to a gluten-free diet, a protein present in some cereals, out of necessity, reveals the unprecedented study Consumer Insights carried out by the multinational Schär.
Just to be clear, I fully support a gluten free diet. There is evidence that, in addition to full-blown celiac disease, a proportion of people may be sensitive to gluten or wheat.
However, processed products labeled “gluten free” and made to replace gluten-containing foods are generally unhealthy. They are also much more expensive. Trusted source
These foods are usually made from highly refined, high glycemic index starches such as corn starch, potato starch and tapioca starch, and can also be loaded with sugar.
Eating gluten free means discarding refined cereals and replacing them with real whole foods.
So-called “gluten-free” products are often loaded with unhealthy ingredients. Avoid them and eat real food.
5. Hidden Sugar
Unfortunately, most people don’t read ingredient lists before making a purchase.
But even for those who do, food manufacturers still have ways todisguise the true content of their products
In ingredient lists, components are listed in descending order by quantity. If you see sugar in the first spots, then you know the product is loaded with sugar.
However, food manufacturers often put different types of sugar in their products. A food can contain sugar, high fructose corn syrup, and evaporated cane juice, which are different names for the same thing—sugar.
That way they can have some other ingredient that looks healthier as number one on the list. However, if you added up the amounts of these three different types of sugar, sugar would be at the top.
This is a clever way to mask the true amount of refined sugar in processed foods.
Here is an article on the 56 most common names for sugar .
Be sure to check if a product contains more than one type of sugar. If that’s the case, sugar may actually be among the main ingredients.
6. Calories per serving
The actual calorie and sugar content of products is often hidden by saying that the product is more than one serving.
For example, a manufacturer might decide that a candy bar or soda bottle has two servings, even if most people don’t stop until they’re done.
Food producers can take advantage of this by saying that their products only contain a certain amount of calories per serving.
When reading the labels, check the number of servings the product contains. If it contains two servings and there are 200 calories per serving, the total amount is 400 calories.
For example, a 24-ounce (0.7 liter) bottle of cola can contain 100 calories and 27 grams of sugar per serving. If the entire bottle contains three servings, the total amount is 300 calories and 81 grams of sugar.
I don’t know about you, but back when I was drinking soda, I could easily take 24 ounces (or more) at a time.
Be sure to check the number of servings on a label. Multiply the total sugar content and calories by the number of servings to find the true total amount.
7. Fruit flavor
Many processed foods have a taste that feels natural.
The sweet taste comes from sugar and the orange flavor comes from artificial chemicals.
Just because a product tastes like real food doesn’t mean it’s actually there. Blueberry, strawberry, orange, etc. – often they’re just chemicals designed to taste like the real thing.
Just because a product tastes like some natural food doesn’t mean there’s the slightest trace of that food in the product.
8. Small amounts of healthy ingredients
Processed products usually list small amounts of ingredients that are commonly considered healthy.
This is purely a marketing ploy. Usually the amounts of these nutrients are negligible and do nothing to offset the harmful effects of the other ingredients.
In this way, the smartest marketers can mislead parents into thinking they are making healthy choices for themselves and their children.
Some examples of ingredients often added in small amounts and displayed prominently on packaging are omega-3s, antioxidants, and whole grains.
Food manufacturers often put small amounts of healthy ingredients into their products to make people think the products are healthy.
9. Hiding controversial ingredients
Many people claim to have adverse reactions to certain food ingredients and therefore choose to avoid them.
However, food manufacturers often hide these controversial ingredients by referring to them with technical names that people don’t know.
For example, in Europe, MSG (monosodium glutamate) might be called E621 and carrageenan might be called E407.
The same can be said for many types of sugar, like “evaporated sugarcane juice” – it sounds natural, but it’s actually just sugar.
Food manufacturers often hide the fact that their products contain controversial ingredients by calling them something else.
10. Foods with low carbohydrate content
Low-carb diets have been very popular over the past few decades.
Food manufacturers followed the trend and began offering a variety of low-carb products.
The problem with these foods is the same as with “low fat” foods – that they are not necessarily healthy.
Typically, these are processed junk food, full of unhealthy ingredients. See the list of ingredients for products such as atkins low carb bars . This is not food!
There are also examples of low-carb breads and other substitute products that contain much more carbohydrate than the label claims.
“Low carbohydrate” products are often highly processed and made with ingredients that are very unhealthy.
11. Unhealthy “organic” ingredients
While organic foods can have some benefits , many food manufacturers use the word “organic” to mislead people.
For example, when you see “raw organic cane sugar” in an ingredient list, that’s basically the same thing as regular table sugar.
Just because something is organic doesn’t make it healthy.
Many foods contain unhealthy ingredients that are organic. This does not mean that they are healthier than their non-organic counterparts.
Obviously, it’s better to limit processed foods completely and, also instead, eat whole and real foods. That way you don’t have to worry about labels and ingredient lists.
Real food doesn’t even need an ingredient list. The real food IS the ingredient.