7 Ingredients You Should Cut Out of Your Diet

The World Health Organization recommends a low consumption of salt and sugar, two of the most harmful substances for health, which are both very present in all types of industrial foodstuffs.
7 Ingredients You Should Cut Out of Your Diet
Elisa Morales Lupayante

Written and verified by the pedagogue in physical education and nutritionist Elisa Morales Lupayante.

Last update: 15 December, 2022

Staying healthy isn’t always easy since supermarkets are filled with ingredients you should definitely avoid or cut out of your diet. To be honest, do you even take some time to read the labels every time you go shopping?

The truth is that few people do. Even those who care about their health don’t read the labels every time they go buy food.

However, you should remember that some foods are really bad for you and have no nutritional value. This means they can cause discomforts such as abdominal swelling or even chronic illnesses or allergies.

So, take a look at this list of ingredients that you should avoid or completely cut out of your diet in order to protect your health.

1. Refined flours

The first ingredient to avoid in your diet is refined flours. These have a high carbohydrate content, meaning that they:

  • Cause intestinal inflammation
  • Provide empty calories
  • Produce food cravings
  • Cause mood changes
  • Cause blood glucose levels to increase

It is best to replace them with whole grains. It’s not a good idea to stop eating flour altogether, as it’s a source of energy and fiber. The only thing you should be careful with is to choose the most complete options.

2. Refined sugar

This second ingredient you should cut out of your diet is in almost everything you eat. This is why it’s such a big problem! Refined sugar affects your metabolic functions, which causes intestinal inflammation. In turn, this chronic inflammation cas negative effects in your immune system.

  • In some cases, it’s difficult to identify it because it has various names such as dextrose or corn syrup.
  • The best way to avoid it is to choose fresh and natural foods. Of course, some foods, such as fruits, contain sugar. However, this is a natural sugar that will rarely cause you harm if you’re careful with portions.

3. Lunch meats

Lunch meats are processed and contain more fat, salt, and sugar than fresh meat. When you eat cold meats, you slow down your digestion. As a result, the stomach processes these foods much slower than normal, causing a lot of gases.

Cold cuts are linked to several cancers (gastric, colorectal and pancreatic). That’s why it’s best to eat natural products such as beef, chicken or turkey breast, rabbit, and fish.

4. Aspartame and monosodium glutamate

The next ingredients to avoid in your diet are the most commonly used artificial sweeteners: Aspartame and monosodium glutamate. Although they help to give a better taste to the food you eat, they also affect insulin resistance problems.

With these ingredients, we recommend the same as with refined sugar: Avoid them at all costs. The best thing you can use to sweeten is a little artisanal honey.

5. Trans fats

Have you heard that trans fats are one of the ingredients you should cut out of your diet? These are the most harmful types of fats that humans consume.

Nevertheless, they’re one of the ingredients present in foods that have undergone the frying process.

When eaten regularly, trans fats increase the chances of having cardiovascular problems and suffering from clogged arteries. Also, they’re difficult to digest, so your stomach health will also be affected in the long term.

It’s best not to eat fried foods. If possible, cook your own foods or check the labels.

6. Potassium bromate

The next ingredient to avoid in your diet is potassium bromate. To detect it, you should read the labels of some products, such as sausages, for example.

According to experts, the problem is as follows: “when dissociated, bromine is released and toxicological studies have found that it can have carcinogenic effects“.

7. Artificial food dyes

artificial colors

Have you ever stopped to think about how companies make their products have those colors that at first glance are so appealing? The answer is: additives. In particular, red #40 and yellow #5. These colorants have been associated to the appearance of several diseases. For this reason, the consumption of industrial foodstuffs on a regular basis isn’t recommended.

In other words, although having Cheetos once in a while isn’t harmful, it can be harmful to consume them daily, as part of a poor diet.

Pay attention to labels, but don’t become obsessed

It’s important to pay attention to what you eat in order to have the healthiest diet possible, but without becoming obsessed or falling into chemophobia.

At the same time, you should try to follow the recommendations of the World Health Organization and always give priority to the consumption of fresh foods, such as fish, nuts, fruits, and vegetables.

If you have any doubts about how to follow a healthy and balanced diet, you can always consult your doctor or nutritionist. They’ll know how to guide you correctly.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

  • Kobylewski S, Jacobson MF. Toxicology of food dyes. Int J Occup Environ Health. 2012;18(3):220-246. doi:10.1179/1077352512Z.00000000034
  • Magnuson BA, Burdock GA, Doull J, et al. Aspartame: A safety evaluation based on current use levels, regulations, and toxicological and epidemiological studies. Crit Rev Toxicol. 2007. doi:10.1080/10408440701516184
  • Baad-Hansen L, Cairns B, Ernberg M, Svensson P. Effect of Systemic Monosodium Glutamate (MSG) on Headache and Pericranial Muscle Sensitivity. Cephalalgia. 2010;30(1):68-76. doi:10.1111/j.1468-2982.2009.01881.x

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.