Some of the easiest, most convenient, and sometimes cheapest lunchtime meals, aren’t the healthiest options. So before you pick up that fancy avocado and crayfish sanger or that juicy Moroccan lamb burger, take a look at why you should think twice.
- Premade sandwiches. The simple sandwich looks harmless and healthy but is actually full of trans fats, sugar and preservatives. It’s much better to make your own.
- Pre-packaged lunches. They look fancy lunchtime platters with its slices of cheese, meats and crackers but this ‘lunch fodder is processed. The cheese slices are probably the biggest giveaway – should a decent bit of cheese look so shiny and plastic?
- Cookies, cake and muffins. It almost goes without saying that these tasty devils are unhealthy but in case you need more convincing; they are packed with sugar, trans fats, white flour, preservatives and corn syrup.
- Single-served yoghurt. Shocked? Experts say they contain excessive amounts of sweetener, colours and artificial flavour but you are on to a winner if you buy plain or lightly sweetened organic yoghurt and mix it with some fruit.
- Burgers and fries. A sensible size burger isn’t bad for you but the trouble starts when you add extras such as bacon, cheese, condiments. The good news is French fires are free of trans fats, the bad news is they take longer to digest and therefore drain you of energy for the rest of the day.
- Baked potato. Yes, the reliable root vegetable is not to be trusted. Potatoes have a high glycemic index and will make you feel tired when you’ve eaten because the quick spike in blood sugar quickly drops causing you to crash mentally and physically.
- Bagels. These bready bad boys are full of white flour and sugar. They raise your blood sugar levels far too quickly and cause you to crash just as fast.
- Energy bars. Don’t be fooled. Experts say these are candy bars in disguise. Loaded with white flour, fructose and sugar, they not only increase your blood sugar levels, causing an afternoon crash, they are high in saturated fat.
- Crackers. They look like the biscuit’s healthy cousin but in reality they contain hidden sugars, fats and preservatives.
- Chips. An obvious one perhaps but did you know that as well as being high in salt, fats and calories, they are often made from genetically modified ingredients. Try baked corn chips or veggie chips instead.
Sources: Prevention.com; Epyk.com