The worst foods, especially for seniors are hot dogs made from processed meats, white bread, white rice, refined and bleached flours, transfats, conventional processed frozen meals bought in food markets, microwavable popcorn, conventional protein/energy bars, cured meat products made with nitrates, margarine, soymilk made from GMO soybeans and conventional soy meat substitutes made with GMO soybeans, diet foods, fat-free cheese substitutes, high-salt items if you have high blood pressure that runs in your family and also are salt-sensitive, and foods sweetened with sugar, fructose, rice syrup, or artificial sweeteners other than stevia.
Then again, if you're already in your nineties and relatively healthy, it may not make much difference if change your eating habits to vegan, vegetarian, or your lifelong eating preferences. At any age, check out the following articles on the worst foods and the most unhealthy foods: Top 30 Worst Foods in America (Beware), The World's Unhealthiest Fast Foods (25 pics) - Izismile.com, Top 10: Worst Foods In The World - AskMen, The 6 Most Terrifying Foods in the World | Cracked.com, and What's The Most Unhealthy Food In The World? - Yahoo! Answers. Also see, "Nine foods you should never eat again," in the December 26, 2013 issue of Natural News.
Which foods will want to avoid because they provide virtually no health benefits
The first food you may want to cut out is white bread and bleached, white refined processed flours. Instead substitute meal, either oat bran and flax seed meal or a mixture of almond meal, flax seed meal, amaranth flour, and either almond meal or quinoa flour. What looks like a grain may really be a seed. For example, amaranth is a seed, not a grain, and so is quinoa. Amaranth and quinoa also are gluten-free.
White bread and refined flours have been stripped of virtually many, minerals, fiber, and other important nutrients. Sometimes they're enriched with synthetic vitamins, such as D2 from various sources instead of the natural D3 from fish oils. Often, your body may not be able to digest and assimilate these foods. Refined white flour has also been bleached with a type of chlorine and brominated with bromide, two chemicals that have been linked to causing thyroid and organ damage, according to an article on bread at this site.
Frozen ready-to eat meals
Too many seniors who can't cook for themselves have to rely on the charity of having frozen already cooked meals delivered. But most conventionally-prepared frozen meals are loaded with preservatives, processed salt, hydrogenated oils and other artificial ingredients. Remember the TV dinners of teh 1950s of frozen turkey or other meat, frozen mashed potatoes, an overcooked vegetable, and a sugary dessert such as cherry or apple cobbler?
Today, most frozen meals have been heavily pre-cooked, until the nutritional content is cut down. If they're microwaved, the nutrition is further destroyed. But there are some healthier frozen foods such as brands like Amy's and Organic Bistro.
If you're not buying specially made organic frozen foods that list all ingredients, you might as well opt for fresh foods. Check out this site, www.4us2be.com). You may want to read the article, "Study Finds That Eating Chocolate Prevents Strokes And Heart Attacks."Also, when it comes to eating at a cafe where cats roam around the tables, check out the article, "First Cat Cafe Opens In Europe."
China and India have some of the highest diabetes rates in the world: Can white rice be one of the culprits?
Who stripped healthy brown or black rice of its coating full of vitamin B and left white rice stripped of most of its nutrients? That form of rice quickly turns to sugar once eaten. White rice is high in the Glycemic Index. In making white rice, you separate the grain from the natural rice bran and germ, how it grows originally. Those are two natural components that make up rice in its brown form.
White rice is nutritionally deficient. Some manufacturers try to fortify white rice. But your body still processes high glycemic, refined food differently than brown rice. Brown, mahogany, red or black rice is is absorbed more slowly than white rice. If the rice isn't white, then it won't cause the same spike in blood sugar that white rice does, according to the Global Naturopath website.
Don't microwave popcorn
You don't want the majority of commercial microwaveable popcorn containing genetically-modified (GMO) corn kernels, salt and preservatives used to enhance or extend flavor. Certain types of commercial,, microwaveable popcorn contains a chemical known as diacetyl that can harm your lungs, according to the Natural News website. Instead buy organic corn kernels and pop the corn yourself in a covered pan or pot using extra virgin coconut oil.
There's enough fat in the coconut oil so you don't have to pour on more melted saturated fat such as butter. You could opt for grass-fed butter. But you don't need to add salt. Those with low blood pressure not salt-sensitive can use pink sea salt or other organic, natural salts that are not processed with aluminum or other minerals and chemicals.
Avoid cured meat products with nitrates and nitrites
Delicatessen processed meats such as hot dogs, bacon, cold cuts, various sausages, salami, baloney, mortadella, pastrami, corned beef, smoked or rolled turkey, and other cured meats sold at the grocery store are often loaded with sodium nitrite and other chemical preservatives that have been linked to causing heart disease and cancer.
Other processed, cured meats use MSG, such as some brands of hot dogs. If you eat meat, stick with uncured, nitrite and nitrate-free varieties from organic, grass-fed animals. Check out the Natural News article on processed meat and the link to heart disease.
Don't eat a lot of commercial energy bars made with conventional protein found at most supermarket chains
Natural doesn't necessarily always mean organic or healthy, and organic doesn't always mean healthy. Some commercial meal replacements may contain processed soy protein, refined sugar, hydrogenated fat (transfats), and other harmful additives that contribute to chronic illness. Some brands are very healthy, such as Thunderbird Energetica, Organic Food Bar, Boku Superfood, Vega Sport, PROBAR, and Zing because of the type of protein in those energy bars. Read the ingredients labels on what you buy.
Stay away from margarine made with transfats or with hidden transfats. You have transfats also in various ready-to-eat processed foods, even in some brands of graham cracker pie crust that you just fill with pudding or fruit instead of baking. Don't eat margarine made with hydrogenated trans-fat oils.
Actually butter and saturated fats in general are not unhealthy if they come from grass-fed animals rather than animals that feed on GMO corn and soy or other grains. If you don't eat animal-based fats such as lard and butter, clarified chicken fat (schmaltz), or bacon fat and you still want saturated fats, use extra-virgin coconut oil or olive oil rather than margarine. Check out the article on saturated fat at Natural News.
Don't drink large quantities of soy milk and then wolf down a lot of soy-based meat substitutes
A lot of textured soy protein many people use as a hamburger filler is very salty. Also nearly all non-organic soy ingredients are of GMO origin. Many commercial soy additives may be processed using a toxic chemical known as hexane, which is linked to some forms of vertigo, some birth defects, reproductive problems, and cancer, according to the article on soy protein and hexane processing.
Soy that has not been fermented is also highly estrogenic. You don't want your hormones unbalanced. Fermented soy if fermented long enough can be healthy, if the soy is not GMO, and is eaten in parts of Asia. Check out the Natural News article on soy protein and hexane use.
Some diet products just add additional sugar or salt to extend the taste
Some products marked fat-free or diet may be full of artificial sweeteners such as aspartame (Equal) and sucralose (Splenda®), both of which are linked to causing neurological damage, gastrointestinal problems, and endocrine disruption, according to various studies. See, the articles, "Potential Harmful Effects of Splenda® According to New Study," and "Splenda Sickness: Heart palpitations, accelerated heartbeat." Also see the article, "Sweetener in the Spotlight: Is Splenda Safe? | Fox News."
You want to check out any chemical flavoring agents that replace fat. Actually prunes can replace fat in home baking just as flax seed meal can replace eggs. Whole foods that come from nature and can sprout if placed in water and soil are healthiest. If you're eating high-fat foods, at least have them as close to what is grown in nature. Check out the Natural News slideshows on 15 foods you should avoid and the Natural News article on processed meats.