This food is not as “junk” as you thought

This food is not as “junk” as you thought
This food is not as “junk” as you thought

Currently, there is a negative perception about certain processed foodsassociating them with problems of health such as obesity and heart disease. However, numerous studies and expert opinions reveal that these foodswhen consumed in moderation and within a balanced diet, can have benefits for the health.

Carla Arakelian

This article discusses several foods commonly considered unhealthy, detailing their nutritional properties and potential benefits. From the dark chocolate until French friesa review is presented of how these products can be integrated into a balanced diet, offering essential nutrients and unexpected benefits.

Foods that aren’t as “junk” as you thought

  • Dark chocolate: Dark chocolate, with a higher cocoa content, has less sugar and more polyphenol antioxidants, which can reduce blood pressure. In addition, 50 g of chocolate with 85% cocoa contains 6 g of fiber, promoting intestinal health.
  • Milk chocolate: Although it contains fewer antioxidants and more sugar than dark chocolate, 50g of milk chocolate offers as much calcium as a 175ml glass of milk and more fibre than a small apple. It also has fewer calories than dark chocolate.
  • White bread: Despite having less fibre than wholemeal bread, two slices of white bread provide 17% of the daily calcium intake. White flour is enriched with vitamins and minerals, which improves its nutritional profile.
  • Red wine: A 175 ml glass of red wine provides polyphenols that are beneficial for the intestinal microbiota and 1.6 mg of iron, covering more than 10% of the recommended daily intake.

Red wine.

Getty Images/iStockphoto

  • Cheerios cereal: Enriched with vitamins and minerals, a small bowl of Cheerios with 150 ml of milk covers more than 40% of the daily recommendation of calcium and about 10% of the necessary fiber.
  • Ham: Ham, especially if it is nitrite-free, is a lean source of protein with less than 5% fat. Iberian ham has low levels of nitrites, reducing the risk associated with colon cancer.
  • Peanut butter: A 30g serving of peanut butter provides 1.5mg of vitamin E and almost a quarter of the daily requirement of niacin, as well as 2g of fibre and a good proportion of unsaturated fats.
  • Café: Drinking three to four cups of coffee a day may reduce the risk of endometrial and liver cancer, and is associated with less abdominal fat. Pregnant women should limit themselves to two cups a day.
  • Pasta: Pasta, both white and whole-wheat, has a low glycemic index, preventing blood glucose spikes. A moderate portion is part of a balanced diet, with whole-wheat pasta offering even more fiber.
  • Fruitcake: A homemade fruit cake can count as one of your five daily servings of fruit, providing iron that combats fatigue.
  • Fried eggs: Although they contain more calories than poached ones, they are rich in protein, B vitamins, vitamin D and selenium. Using unsaturated oil to fry them is a healthier option.
  • Red meat: Lean, unprocessed red meat, such as beef and lamb, is rich in iron and zinc. Eating 300-500 grams a week can be part of a healthy diet.
  • Tomato soup: It is rich in lycopene, an antioxidant that may reduce the risk of stroke. It is low in sugar and provides a quarter of the recommended daily salt in a 300g bowl.
  • Queso: Although it is high in saturated fat, studies suggest that cheese lovers tend to be slimmer. Cheese stimulates beneficial intestinal bacteria, improving metabolism.



  • Chips: A 25g bag of crisps provides more potassium than a banana and more vitamin C than a bunch of red grapes. Today, they are fried in sunflower or rapeseed oil, which are rich in unsaturated fats.
  • Popcorn: Popcorn, a whole grain cereal, is healthy when consumed in controlled portions without excessive added fat, sugar or salt. A 28g serving with sea salt has 150 calories and 2g of fibre.
  • Baked potatoes: Baked potatoes with a little sunflower oil are comparable to homemade baked potatoes. An average 150 g serving provides 1.37 mg of vitamin E and 5.3 g of fibre.
  • Low-calorie cheeses: Naturally low-calorie cheeses include Camembert, feta and fresh mozzarella. Eating your favorite cheeses in moderation is the key to a balanced diet.

This information is in no way a substitute for a doctor’s diagnosis or prescription. It is important to consult a specialist when symptoms appear in the event of an illness and never self-medicate.

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