You get to hear this from almost every Men’s Health Magazine
“You are what you eat”
Unhealthy eating habits and poor dieting could be attributed to a lot of negative issues in the lives of many men.
According to Nutritionist and Blogger- Cynthia Sass:
…So each and every day, your body is busy making new cells to replace those that have “expired.” And how healthy those new cells are is directly determined by how well you’ve been eating …
To bear credence to the assertion above, it is pertinent for every dude whose fitness level is of utmost important to his personality & ego– to understand that proper dieting is one of the key inputs that breeds you into what you’ll be and look like.
For this reason, I’ll be listing Ten of those regular Foods, Beverages and drinks that should either be taken sparingly or eliminated totally from the things you should be eating.
Personally I did, and the results have been quite amazing to say the least.
Below is a list of such foods and Drinks:
Although many recent findings and researches favors the inclusion of beer in your diet owing to the health benefits of beer.
According to this excerpts cited from an article on the famous online Medical Journal- WebMd:
Beer is used for preventing diseases of the heart and circulatory system, including coronary heart disease, “hardening of the arteries” (atherosclerosis), heart failure, heart attack, and stroke.
It is also used to reduce the chance of death from heart attack and from another heart condition called ischemic left ventricular (LV) dysfunction.
Notwithstanding the above listed health Benefits derived from drinking or properly utilizing Beer; a good thing could still be abused and the resultant effect would be utterly debilitating.
Beer is notorious for many negatives; aside making you develop the famous “Beer Gut. it is known to damage so many vital organs of the body. Chief amongst them is the Liver and Kidneys.
I know this can be scientifically linked to the “excessive” gulping of the liquid. It is usually recommended that Beer should be “moderately” used in order for any person to gain from the obvious health benefits contained therein.
So what would Experts consider as Moderate then?
According to experts; moderate alcohol usage could be tagged at 12 fluid ounces (355 milliliters) of beer ; especially for dudes who are 65 years and above. Maybe for those who are younger, supplementing little above this can be acceptable and you still get to stay good.
Though it is proven that moderate beer drinking can help in improving the health of those with higher risk factors for Heart diseases and stroke; but the truth here is that not taking any beer at all has even more health benefits.
You can’t lead a sedentary lifestyle, drink a couple of beers and be healthy. The summary here is that being physically active by exercising would do you a lot more good than binging on beer and thinking you are living by the example the “experts” recommended.
From my experience, I started by being taking it moderately, then went a step further to quit.
Though I feel like having a bottle or two from time to time, but I’m kinda restraining myself till I attain the fitness goal I have set, maybe when I do I could just give myself a pat on the back by beheading some bottles of beer.
2. Excess Grains
Grains have high caloric content and are a good source for carbs.
Mind you I’m not saying you should stop eating grains like rice, Bailey, cereals, maize etc. Never, I’m only basing my submission from personal experience when I decided to reduce my intake of rice and noodles.
Like I surmised in the beginning of this discussion, I really used to be flabby and almost overweight (luckily I wasn’t).
Note- it was not because of the high consumption of grains that made me feel overweight at the time, rather it could be ascribed to the fact that grains have a high tendency to turn you into a glutton. Making you consume more than your body actually requires.
The more of this grains you consume, the more your body craves for it. Then when it utilizes the ones that are needed, the rest are stored as unused carbs that if not well broken down could result into obesity and in some cases diabetes.
Again, eating grains especially unprocessed ones, is truly beneficial, however, overeating them would invariably bear some negative health results for you as a dude.
The moral of the story is eat only what your body needs and make sure your diet is balanced with high proteins like fish, vegetables and healthy fats.
3. Excess Consumption of Soft & Fizzy Drinks and Beverages:
Studies on the negative health implications of over consumption of Soft, Sweetened, fizzy or should I say carbonated drinks and beverages abound.
In a recent survey by Harvard University Researchers; it was discovered that the more of these drinks a person consumed, the greater risk of the person dying .
According to Walter Willett, Chair of the Department of Nutrition HARVARD T.H CHAN School of Public Health:
… Everyone should be aware that we are in a middle of an Epidemic of overweight and obesity, that rates of obesity in Children have tripled and quadrupled in the last thirty years.
Now two-thirds of Americans are overweight…
… during the last several years it’s become clear that soda and other sugary beverages like fruit drinks are one of the main factors that are fueling the epidemic of obesity.
We have seen for example that about one drink of sugar beverage per day causes about a 60% increase in the risk of obesity in children; and there’s a clear relationship between sugar beverage consumption and overweight ranking in adults as well
He goes on further to warn on the need for everyone to reduce the intake of sugary drinks and beverages.
Now for me personally, I discerned firsthand what soft drinks could do to a man, when I experienced some organ malfunction in the heat of a sexual tryst.
AT the time I was overly bulky and broader than I was built to be, and I found out via some articles on-line that Sugary drinks and foods was contributory to this rude awakening.
I stopped and as I write this, I’m fully back to my top striking mode, ha ha ! if you know, you know!
When Professor Eric Rimm of the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health made an argument in favor of people eating fries, the whole internet; Twitter in this case came for his academic ass.
The hullabaloo this statement generated at the time, trust me the ripples is still felt even as I write this.
Even when our distinguished Prof issued a rebuttal to his earlier statement, claiming that he was only recommending for an average consumption of “six fries” per serving. It still didn’t quell the storm, but even generated more controversy for the Academician.
Eric, who many now refer to as the “6 fries guy” is still defending his discovery, and stylishly refuting some points he raised earlier:
So how true is this assertion?
A lot of nutritionist have continuously debunked Mr. Rimm’s claim; with top Nutritionist like Lindsay Moyer, a Senior Nutritionist for Nutrition Action Healthletter in her response to a phone interview conducted by the Journalistic Resource retorted that:
.. many restaurants serve fries in oversize portions; a side of fries can have as many calories as the entrée itself… When you’re getting fries, you’re getting a big pile of starch soaked in oil. Nutritionally, we know it’s not a good choice
In a recent Study conducted and published by The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition; where 4440 participants aged 45–79 years, of which 2551 (57.9%) were women with a mean ± SD age of 61.3 ± 9.2 years. The research concluded that Fried potato consumption is associated with elevated mortality.
So as a dude who wants to live a long and fruitful life, we are never suggesting that you should quit eating fries, No!
Everything should be done in moderation, just like Exercise is good, but too much exercise can be harmful to your body- reversing the gains you’ve made when the frequency is too much.
Make sure you take it slowly while eating fries, I bet having side dishes like veggies can do you a lot good, just like Prof Rimm Suggests.
5. Excess Sugar Consumption:
They’ve been lots of arguments on the dietary implication of either consuming sugar moderately, in excess or not at all.
With many arguing either for it or against it. The noise this issue has generated and still doing even as we speak, is indeed enormous and overwhelming especially for laymen like you and I.
However, my submission here will always be from a personal standpoint, and I stand to be corrected.
It is a known fact that high or even moderate consumption of Sugars has been linked to ailments and diseases like – Diabetes, Heart Disease, Obesity, increase risk to acne, probable risk factor for cancer and more.
Notwithstanding, another school of thought is of the view that – “not all sugars are bad”.
Some Nutritionist suggest Dietary Sugars or replacing Sugars with sweeteners like – aspartame, saccharin, and sucralose. Unfortunately studies have shown that these kinda sugars or sweeteners can even lead to weight gain.
After, reconsidering my high sugar intake, I was so high on drinking soft drinks, smoothies, sweetened beverages and heavily creamed coffee.
I noticed a spike in my stress levels. I became easily enervated and was kinda losing control of some hitherto natural tasks I did in the past. It got to a point that my testosterone levels even reduced and I felt less masculine.
Now when I looked into my poor & inadequate diet regime and decided to cut down my intake of sugar; the results were enormous and seriously encouraging.
I won’t start backing my submission by citing expert example and analysis made for and against sugar consumption. Rather I’ll categorically state here that if you are indeed a health conscious dude whose overall wellbeing is critical and significant to- then it is expedient of you to either take Sugars meagerly or even eliminate it totally if you must.
This move will greatly enhance your life, reducing or even eliminating risk factors associated with diabetes, heart disease, obesity and infertility.
6. Canned Foods
Though it has been debunked that processed foods does not necessarily reduce the vitality and nutritional benefits of food stored in them.
As detailed in this article by Listonic titled- Canned Food is Good For You! Here’s Why. Here the Article explains further on the benefits of canning- summarizing the benefits thus- Price, Range, Sustainability & storage.
Though this might be the truth, but as Men, it is not yet uhuru for us because our reproductive health is at stake here, or is it?
It has been discovered that canned foods contain- Bisphenol A (BPA– An estrogen-mimicking chemical); and high production volume chemical that is widely used in the manufacture of consumer products such as polycarbonate plastics, epoxy resin liners of canned foods, some dental sealants and composites- and this chemical as stipulated in some studies might affect the reproductive health of men.
Though studies remain discrepant and inconclusive; which could be blamed on the issues of equivocal data collections and variance of sample from varied men owing to factors like race, age, gender and other factors strong enough to make far reaching alterations.
However, some studies suggests that this substance could indeed inhibit the production of testosterone, and rather engender a larger concentration of estrogen in men, while others dismiss it as an old wives tales and that canned foods indeed are packed with more nutritional benefits than it’s fresh counterpart.
The takeaway here is that if BPA (yes a big “IF”); is as harmful as suggested, then we should jolly well as men take a more cursory look into this chemical and how to counteract whatever harmful effect it portends.
Notably, it has no blackball effect on women since it is estrogen we are talking here. But for men, the reverse is indeed the case especially if you are to consider the prevalence of high infertility in men these days.
Again, we are never suggesting you should eliminate canned foods from your diet; but I’d say it will be more sensible to ensure you do the following before you purchase any canned food:
- check for its expiry date
- ensure you read the Nutritional information as contained by the side of the Can to understand more on the ingredients and quantity utilized in the production of the canned item.
- Never hurry to purchase a canned food especially when you can get a fresh one with no preservative in the open market
- Read more on the reputation of the company involved in the canning and preservation of the food. Over the years we’ve had incidences of companies involved in many unhealthy and unethical practices when processing, preserving and canning food items.
Finally, canned foods are not bad just like fresh foods are not; but the choice we make absolutely depends on the commitment, convictions & exposure to the nutritional facts on a case to case basis.
But I’ll advise here that you should always do everything in moderation in order to mitigate both the positives and negatives associated with any action or inaction we take.
7. Fast Foods, Confectioneries & Pastries:
One of the major causes of obesity in men can be easily linked to fast foods.
The Burgers, cakes, pizzas, pastries, chocolates and just about any foods processed outside the confines of our homes, can alter the nutritional balance of our bodies either for good and mostly for bad.
Aside the issue of containing so many unhealthy ingredients and additives, the fact that most of these foods are produced under unhygienic conditions makes it even greatly unsuitable for our consumption.
Men in this case apart from children, suffer more in terms of the negative effects of consuming fast foods over a long period of time.
In my own case, I felt a spike in my blood sugar levels and a drop in my strength and masculine abilities when I made fast foods my favorite eating past time.
In a recent survey conducted by Harsh Kumar, Rajdeep Palaha and Amandeep Kaur, 2013. Study of Consumption, Behavior and Awareness of Fast Food among University Hostlers. Asian Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 5: 1-7
The study was conducted during the Post Monsoon season of October-November 2011; in the exquisite and luxurious Professional University hostels.
Results collated from this research indicate The size of the study sample of 1811 students which is 10.06% of the total strength of 18,000 currently residing in the hostel.
The study took into cognizance eating patterns of these students and what are the triggers and influences in their desire for fast food even when it is on record that:
According to WHO (2003), frequent fast food consumption is also a health concern because most fast foods are rich in saturated fats, trans fats, simple carbohydrates and sodium-all of which are nutrients associated with hypertension, cardiovascular disease, and type 2 diabetes.
The study concluded that : There’s a converging evidence of a direct causal link between food advertising, parent’s role and behavioral pattern of the hostlers about the fast food consumption.
The Implication of the above :
The real implication here is that Fast Foods encourage gluttony and food binges. Not forgetting that these two have a strong impact on health related issues like obesity and diabetes especially in men where the risk factors like hereditary, race & familial traits for these diseases and conditions are eminently increased from taking in so much junk.
From my own personal experience; when I binged on anything fast food, I noticed some very serious health deterioration. I felt heartburns, tiredness, nauseating feeling, low testosterone and low libido.
When I went off fast food and every convenience food, my health greatly improved and I felt more like a teen again. Doing things much more easily & efficiently than when I was reliant on fast foods for my health and nutritional needs.
8. Red Meat
Red meat continues to garner more controversy over the years with many experts affirming its complicity in cardiovascular diseases and high mortality.
While one study insists that it does, another summarizes it’s findings by associating consumption of red meat over a prolonged period and not on short periods.
This position was indeed submitted by the Researchers at Purdue University led by Professor Wayne Campbell, professor of nutrition science: hear him
During the last 20 years, there have been recommendations to eat less red meat as part of a healthier diet, but our research supports that red meat can be incorporated into a healthier diet,”.
Red meat is a nutrient-rich food, not only as a source for protein but also bioavailable iron.
While another study explores the alternative route.
The research team led by Dr. Frank Hu of the Harvard School of Public Health set out to learn more about the association between red meat intake and mortality.
The team studied over 37,000 men from the Health Professionals Follow-up Study (beginning in 1986) and over 83,000 women from the Nurses’ Health Study (beginning in 1980). All the participants were free of cardiovascular disease and cancer at the start of the study.
Now at the end of the study, as published in the Journal of the US Health & Services (NIH Research Matters); the findings are as follow:
Almost 24,000 participants died in the duration of the study, including about 5,900 from cardiovascular disease and about 9,500 from cancer.
Note this : Those who consumed the highest levels of both unprocessed and processed red meat had the highest risk of all-cause of mortality, cancer mortality and cardiovascular disease mortality.
After adjusting for other risk factors, the researchers calculated that 1 additional serving per day of unprocessed red meat over the course of the study raised the risk of total mortality by 13%.
An extra serving of processed red meat (such as bacon, hot dogs, sausage and salami) raised the risk by 20%.
Red meat is relatively unhealthy, especially when it is consumed in greater quantities over a prolonged period of time.
As Men, we require healthy fats and proteins to keep us at our optimum masculine zone, and red meat is a great source of these supplements. But like every other foods discussed thus far- we need to take it in moderation.
9. Milk, Yogurt, Ice creams, cheese and every Dairy products:
Yogurts for example are known to have some nutritional benefits like strengthening one’s immune system, not forgetting its high concentration of calcium which is a good source for men suffering osteoporosis.
On the other hand, milk and dairy products according to some study might be partly or wholly responsible for Type 2 Diabetes, Prostrate Cancer, increased risk of breast and ovarian cancer and reported cases of Osteoporosis especially within the aging population.
Though this has not been scientifically proven, and very much disputed within the Medical & Scientific community.
The bottom line here is how these foods are processed.
Some are notorious for containing high levels of sugars and processed fats; which I do not need to inform you again that these is not good for the overall health and wellbeing of any man.
Even as the controversy over the health benefits and side effects of milk and dairy products continue to rage; many researches and findings are surprisingly in the favor of consuming dairy products owing to their health benefits.
To support this position; in a study published in the Oxford University Press by Francesco Visioli & Andrea Strata on Milk, Dairy Products, and Their Functional Effects in Humans: A Narrative Review of Recent Evidence
This study was necessitated by the widely held belief that milk and the products associated with it, are potentially harmful and responsible for a wide range of cardiovascular diseases.
It was summarized thus that:
the effects of milk (notably skimmed milk) on body weight appear to be well documented, and the conclusions of the vast majority of published studies indicate that dairy consumption does not increase cardiovascular risk or the incidence of some cancers.
Even though the available evidence is not conclusive, some studies suggest that milk and its derivatives might actually be beneficial to some population segments. Although future studies will help elucidate the role of milk and dairy products.
The above summary are the health benefits derived from dairy foods; like we always insist, moderation is the key. Most importantly, our bodies require enough calories to perform our mandatory masculine functions, and therefore requires nutrients from divergent sources to balance our hormones and maintain our outward as well as inward appearance.
10. Processed Fats:
According to the World Health Organization:
A healthy diet helps to protect against malnutrition in all its forms, as well as noncommunicable diseases (NCDs), including such as diabetes, heart disease, stroke and cancer
This is why Fats are categorized into “good” and “bad” fats accordingly.
You really need to understand what category or fat type you are eating in order not be shortchanged in taking in nutrients that might be considered extraneous and harmful to your overall health
What are “good” or “bad” Fats then?
To answer this question most intelligently, I will be citing an article from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health on an article published in their journal on Fats & Cholesterol. The summary of the types are summarized below:
Good, Bad & Saturated fats:
Good” unsaturated fats — Monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats — lower disease risk. Foods high in good fats include vegetable oils (such as olive, canola, sunflower, soy, and corn), nuts, seeds, and fish.
“Bad” fats — trans fats — increase disease risk, even when eaten in small quantities. Foods containing trans fats are primarily in processed foods made with trans fat from partially hydrogenated oil. Fortunately, trans fats have been eliminated from many of these foods.
Saturated fats, while not as harmful as trans fats, by comparison with unsaturated fats negatively impact health and are best consumed in moderation. Foods containing large amounts of saturated fat include red meat, butter, cheese, and ice cream. Some plant-based fats like coconut oil and palm oil are also rich in saturated fat.
In the commencement of this article, I conscientiously explained that the submissions contained herein are personal experiences garnered from the time I decided to either eat the foods sparingly or stop taking them completely.
I am never advising anyone to stop eating any food listed above, especially if you have developed a pallet for it.
Having stated that- going forward, I’d suggest that for your optimal health to take these foods in moderation; yes “MODERATION” must always be the keyword when you are making those informed dietary decisions as a man who wants to live longer and healthier.
Thanks for taking your time to go through this article and we believe it is to your liking. However, this piece is never an endorsement or spurious promotional article; but a collection of words and items concerning the topic of discourse.
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