Most people think of their fridge as a nutritional safety zone, home to minimally- processed foods like fruits and veggies, milk, curd and condiments. But nutrition in the fridge is just confined to veggie box or main shelves. But look around inside the fridge, the door, the chill zone and the freezer, those small shelves, which, ironically, turn into the biggest attraction the moment you open the fridge. And they have the stuff that is the most dangerous. Candy bars, chocolates, mayonnaise, fizzy beverages etc. all these are nothing but calorie factories.
How to get rid of this stuff?
Well, the only way is to dispose them off, by tossing them into a trash can. But the problem here is, what and what not to dispose off. Every food item has a group of ingredients, and catchy captions, which make you think it is healthy, which is why you bought it in the first place. Now what, getting confused? Here’s a short and sweet list of the top 5 worst foods in that refrigerator of yours, and healthy alternatives to these sugar and fat bombs.
- Worst Staple – White Bread : you may think a loaf of reliable white bread is a harmless vehicle. White bread is made up of refined flour, which is robbed of the protein, key nutrients and bran. Refined grains can be dangerous to your heart besides being lower in protein and fibre than whole wheat bread.
Quick Tip: whole wheat bread/multigrain bread/chapattis.
- Worst Quick-Fix Side Dish – Frozen French Fries : If you think that having frozen fries and ‘smileys’ is a better alternative for having a healthy serving of potatoes, then you are gravely mistaken. Most frozen potato products are flash fried and contain a higher quantity of fat and salt contents than if you did it yourself. Also, they also help you pack on the pounds faster than you think. And out of all the available frozen fried foods, the worst culprit of weight gain are, ironically, the thinnest potato pieces – French fries..!! Eating one serving of French fries per day results in approximate 1.5 kg weight gain in 4 years. Many of these foods also contain as much as 1000 mg of sodium per serving (which is half your daily intake). No doubt, they are one of the main reasons for cardiovascular diseases all over the world
Quick Tip: make your own French fries. A much better option is to bake them by cutting them into small pieces , dipping them in olive oil, adding a pinch of salt, and keeping them in oven.
- Worst Condiment – Mayonnaise : Love it or hate it, there’s no denying that mayonnaise is a common staple in fridges. But with 100 calories per tsp, this condiment can turn your typical sandwich into a calorie bomb, no matter how savory it is to your taste buds.
Quick Tip: Mustards are a great alternative to mayonnaise and add a whole new flavor to your snack, but if you really crave that creamy flavor and texture, pesto should be your pick.
- Worst Spread And Cooking Fat – Butter: one tablespoon of butter contains 100 calories, 8g of saturated fat and 30 mg cholesterol, so it is not hard to see why this could be a diet danger if used too often. Using margarine in its place, isn’t better as well, because it contains cholesterol-raising trans fats. If you sauté your vegetables in butter, the flavor disappears even though you still get the calories.
Quick Tip: Olive oil. This is a healthy substituent to butter, because it contains heart-healthy mono-unsaturated fats that make it a better bet.
- Worst Beverage – Fizzy Drinks: Your typical can of aerated drinks contains about 140 calories and 10 teaspoons of sugar – not exactly what a thirst quencher should contain. And diet cola isn’t any better, because both of them have been linked to adult metabolic syndrome, which increases your odds for developing heart disease and type 2 diabetes. These are not suitable even for children and teenagers, as they are a big reason for childhood obesity.
Quick Tip: Water/fresh juice/ iced tea. They are healthier and have less sugar and more nutrition.
So, here were some of the worst foods in your fridge that could set you off track and healthy options to stock instead. Passing up these foods, and having the healthy ones instead, can help to prevent many lifestyle diseases like cardiovascular diseases, obesity and type 2 diabetes.
Always remember if you don’t have it, you’re not going to eat it or use it, it is as simple as that.