Healthy Meal Plans to Lose Weight: What Not to Include

If you have spent years eating unhealthy junk food, making the transition to eating healthy is not an easy thing to do. Knowing which foods to avoid can make the adjustment less confusing. Here are some types of food healthy meal plans to lose weight should not include.

Avoid Processed Foods When You Are Trying to Lose Weight

Processed foods are boxed, canned, frozen and dehydrated for convenience. These types of foods are abundant in grocery stores and fast food restaurants. Packing your cupboards with processed foods may seem harmless, but in reality these items contain dangerous additives and chemicals that can harm your health.

Processed food manufacturers use preservatives, sweeteners, salt, coloring, emulsifiers and a host of chemicals most people can’t even pronounce. Sometimes you won’t even know what types of chemical additives foods contain because manufacturers are not required to list them on the labels.

These additives contribute to diabetes, heart disease, obesity, high blood pressure, cancer and a number of other illnesses. Even whole milk and other dairy products are bad for you because the cows that are used to produce these products are injected with growth hormones and antibiotics.

Instead of buying these chemical-laden dairy products, get all the calcium you need in your diet from plant-based sources like sesame seeds, collard greens, spinach, turnip greens, kale, broccoli, oranges and asparagus.

Don’t Eat Foods That Contain Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil

Hydrogenated vegetable oil, more commonly referred to as trans-fat, is made by mixing liquid vegetable oil with hydrogen atoms. This process turns the oil into a solid. The oil is then used in processed foods to prolong the shelf life and improve the taste.

Trans-fat is cheaper than other types of oils and it can be heated repeatedly without breaking down – this is why restaurants love to use it to fry foods. This type of fat is the worst kind to have in your diet because it increases your risk of heart attacks and strokes.

Trans-fat is so unhealthy that some cities have banned the use of it in restaurants. Manufacturers are required to clearly label foods that contain this ingredient. However, they are not required to label foods that have less than a gram of hydrogenated oil, so even if the label reads, “0 grams of trans-fat,” there may be trace amounts present. 

Do Not Drink Diet Soft Drinks to Lose Weight

The label on most diet drinks read, “0 calories,” but this does not mean they’re good for losing weight. Did you know that the low-calorie sweeteners in diet drinks make you hungry? Naturally, when you are hungry, you eat more; and when you eat more, you increase your chances of packing on those extra pounds.

Soda manufacturers are delighted to tell you that their diet drinks are low in calories, but what they will not tell you is that the sucrose and aspartame used in these drinks heighten your risk for weight gain and diabetes. Soda makers also fail to disclose that low-calorie sweeteners have been linked to dozens of health conditions including:

• vertigo
• headaches and migraines
• depression
• panic attacks
• sensory neuropathy
• seizures
• mood swings
• anxiety

Low-cal sweeteners can also worsen or contribute to brain tumors, chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, birth defects, Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease. Instead of drinking diet sodas, you can sweeten your favorite herbal tea or organic coffee with honey or agave syrup.

Dropping the pounds for good and staying healthy requires a lifelong commitment to change. Knowing which foods to avoid can reduce confusion and make the transition to a healthier you easier.

Healthy meal plans to lose weight should be realistic and sustainable. Learn how to lose weight and keep it off at

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