Don't Eat These Foods! 7 Foods To Stay Away From

In Life by Wendy Michaels , on Thursday, January 12, 2012, 1:02 PM (PST)
Buy organic apples


7 Foods You Should Never Eat

If your New Year resolution was to eat healthier, you will REALLY want to take note of these seven foods you should never eat.

We're not talking Twinkies and Ho-Hos here, folks. Some of these verboten foods may surprise you.

If you're looking to eat a cleaner diet, check out these 7 foods you shouldn't eat -- and their healthier counterparts:

Overall, you want to avoid overly processed food and choose organic options, when possible.

Canned Tomatoes: Endocrinologist Fredrick Vom Saal of the University of Missouri notes that the tin can linings for tomatoes contain synthetic estrogen bisphenol-A. This has been linked to heart disease, diabetes, obesity and reproductive problems. The acidity of the tomatoes causes BPA to leach into the food. Look for tomatoes in glass bottles or Tetra Pak boxes. Even a jar of pasta sauces is a better and less expensive alternative -- just read the ingredient label to look for low sodium options and those sauces with less ingredients.

Read: Men Think About Food as Much as Sex

Corn-Fed Beef: Polyface Farms co-owner Joel Salatin notes that cattle fattened on a corn-fed diet offer less nutrition for consumers. A study from the USDA and Clemson University researchers found that grass-fed beef has more beta-carotene, vitamin E, omega-3s, conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), calcium, magnesium and potassium than its corn-fed counterpart. Salatin adds, "We need to respect the fact that cows are herbivores, and that does not mean feeding them corn and chicken manure." Buy grass-fed beef instead from a local farmer or get cuts on the bone for a cheaper alternative.

Microwave Popcorn: Environmental Working Group senior scientist Olga Naidenko notes that chemicals, like perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), exist in the lining of the bag. These can lead to infertility, liver, testicular, and pancreatic cancer. The process of microwaving the popcorn causes the chemicals to move to the popcorn and Naidenko explains, "They stay in your body for years and accumulate there." Until 2015, when manufacturers will have phased out PFOA, look to popping your corn in a skillet.

Nonorganic Potatoes: Organic Standards Board chair Jeffrey Moyer shares that root vegetables absorb pesticides, herbicides and fungicides in the soil. Buy organic instead -- even trying to wash non-organic potatoes isn't enough to remove chemicals because they've been absorbed.

Farmed Salmon: Dr. David Carpenter, director of the Institute for Health and the Environment at the University at Albany, talks about the contamination in fish in a new study that found that farmed salmon is lower in vitamin D and higher in contaminants (such as carcinogens, PCBs, brominated flame retardants, and pesticides like dioxin and DDT). Instead, try wild-caught Alaska salmon or canned salmon.

Read: Gwyneth Paltrow to Launch Food Show, Magazine?

Milk Produced with Artificial Hormones: Dairy cattle treated with recombinant bovine growth hormone (rBGH or rBST) to boost milk production can lead to udder infections and higher levels of hormone insulin-like growth factor (IGF-1) in the milk, which can contribute to breast, prostate and colon cancers. Always buy rBGH-free and rBST-free milk or organic milk. There are many non-organic options available without the growth hormone.

Nonorganic Apples: Pesticides are to blame here because apples are sprayed frequently, though the industry believes residues from the pesticides are not harmful. Organic apples are your best bet, but if you don't want to spend the extra money, always wash and peel the apples before eating them.


Read More About organic »

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