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Are Certain Foods Bad for You?

Por Nydia Rivera Alcaide* -

Do you know people who won't eat chocolate cake, ice cream or fried squid because they say these foods are "bad" or "fattening?" Don't listen to them! Read this article and discover which foods are good and bad for you.

An imaginary threat

To find out whether there's such a thing as healthy and unhealthy foods, we asked Dr. Eleazar Lara-Pantin, a nutrition expert at MyDiet, for his opinion. "Food is something people need to take in the calories and nutrients that the body requires. Any food that meets these requirements shouldn't be described as good or bad. Food is either good or bad depending on how we eat it," stresses Dr. Lara-Pantin.
In other words, it’s not that the food intrinsically that´s good or bad for you, but rather how we eat it and how much of it we eat.

The good, the bad, and the ugly

We don't have to deprive ourselves completely of food that's rich in calories and nutrients. We should, however, eat these foods once in a while and in moderation. For example, it’s not bad for us to eat meat lasagna every now and then. What's bad is if we eat lots of it and very frequently.

Likewise, if we only eat one type of food, day in and day out, regardless of how healthy it is, and if we don’t add variety to our menu, we will be taking in only very few very nutrients. We need to provide our bodies a variety of nutrients; otherwise, it can also be detrimental.
In both cases, it is clear that it's not good to eat any food in excess. "You have to eat a balanced diet," underlines Dr. Lara-Pantin. To achieve this, you have to add variety to your menu.

In addition, how food is prepared is important. Even if the dish we're cooking has all the nutrients we need, it may end up not being very healthy if we pile it up with other items when we prepare it. For instance, if you're cooking meat that is already fatty and decide to fry it with oil, the meal will have excessive amounts of fat, which may be harmful if you already consume large amounts of fat in your diet. The same can happen with other food components, such as proteins and carbohydrates, among others.

Another important thing to remember is that food has to be sanitary and clean. Food can be a hazardous vehicle of bacteria or undesirable contaminants if you don’t follow certain steps. Before buying food, we recommend you make sure it’s fresh and, once at home, avoid decomposition and contamination by keeping it clean and refrigerated.

Advice for a happy ending

In conclusion, there's no such thing as foods that are bad or good for you. What we recommend is that you always eat in moderation. Finally, remember to vary your meals so you take in all the nutrients you need. And make sure that the food you buy or cook has not expired and doesn't contain any harmful bacteria.

*Nydia Rivera is a journalist for DrTango, Inc.


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