11 Harmful Food Combinations You Should Strictly Avoid Eating (Might be upsetting your Digestion)

Food combinations are the best part of our daily diet. But improper food combinations do not only lead to indigestion but also the production of toxins in your body. This is because each food item has a distinct taste, characteristic, potency, energy and effect on the digestive system.

When food with different energies are combined, it can overload the digestive fire and lead to indigestion, bloating, fermentation, gas and production of toxins.

Certain food combinations disrupt the digestive tract more than others. Paying attention and avoiding some foods combinations can lead to

improved health

healing

improved quality of digestion

the deeper level of nourishment

improved overall health

Below is a list of some food combination that should be completely avoided along with some supportive food combinations. The list is not extensive and there may be many other foods combinations that would not suit one specifically, look for instincts.

1.Eggs and Fried Meat

One of the bad food combinations for digestion is eggs and fried meat. Though this classic breakfast combo is loved by most, it can take a toll on your digestion. Fried meat like bacon along with eggs is a combo that is loaded with protein and your digestive system may take a long time to digest it. Make an effort to consume at least one item that is made up of fruits and vegetables.

Here’s some quick Low Cal Breakfast Options

2.Cheese and Beans

Although it’s a classic combination along with guacamole and hot sauce in Mexican cuisine, the entire recipe (not just beans alone) will build heavy gas and bloating.

Cheese is one of the most inflammatory foods you can ever eat, while beans have a particular type of sugar our bodies can’t process as they lack the right enzymes to do so. As a result of mixing these two foods, you will feel gassy and bloating.

It is best to keep beans and dairy separate for easier digestion. Try to eat them separately, either avoid beans or avoid dairy when you are going for this dish.

6 Healthiest Cheeses for Cheese Lovers

3.Water with Food

As a constant water-drinker, I was surprised to hear we shouldn’t be having it with our meals.

Drinking water with your meal or right after is the norm, but water can worsen GERD, cause bloating and interfere with the digestion of your food. Your stomach is a highly acidic environment where hydrochloric acid breaks down what you consume. When you drink a lot of water, you risk changing the acidity of your stomach and hindering the breakdown of your food.

In a healthy gastrointestinal system, all food consumed is being broken down and the nutrients are being optimally absorbed by the body, and the waste is passed. So when you aren’t breaking down your food, it can affect your whole GI tract functions and digestive system, causing bloating, gas, and general discomfort.

Of course, it’s OK to take sips of water with your meal, but it is recommended to drink a glass of water about 30 minutes before or after your meals to prevent the bloat.

7 Everyday benefits of drinking cumin water

4. Fries and Burger

Why? A convenient meal is usually an unhealthy one, to say the least.

This may make you wonder because most burger joints give fries along with the burger. But it is not so because this combo is as wrong as it could get. Overcooked food with high levels of fat, preservatives and other chemicals can form a charcoal-type substance. This then combines with the sugar in potato fries, creating cytokines that can cause inflammation and speed up the ageing process.

Both fries and burger patty are deep-fried food items, which can make your blood sugar levels very low. Low blood sugar levels will make you tired and lethargic.

5. Cola and Pizza

Another combo that most fast-food chains offer to its customers, soda and pizza is a very bad choice as far as your health is concerned. Soda and pizza, or anything with high fructose corn syrup, and refined carbs increases false hunger pangs and decreases satiety,

Pizza is loaded with starch and proteins, which slows down digestion and high amounts of sugar from cola further makes your digestion sluggish. So even if you ate a huge meal of pizza, the sugars in the soda could keep you from feeling full.

Ever wonder how you ended up polishing off that entire pizza? Now you know.

6.Fruits with your meal or afterwards

One of the worst food mistakes that anyone can make is eating fruits after a full meal. Fruits and other food items do not go well with each other. Why?

Fruit is absorbed very quickly, passing through the stomach and then absorbed in the intestines. When these fruits are combined with grains, meats or dried products- they can stay in the digestive tract too long and begin to ferment. This can cause damage to the walls of your intestine amongst other problems and cause tummy troubles.

7. Banana and Milk

One very common example of a food combination that can create havoc in our system is banana and milk.

Milk and banana are some of the most toxin-forming food combinations as they can cause heaviness. It may also make your mind slow and your body lethargic. Though both these food items have cooling energy their post digestion effect is different, banana is sour, while milk is sweet. This confuses our digestive system and results in imbalances.

If consumed together can diminish the digestive fire and produce toxins, which can cause problems like sinus, cold, cough, allergy and congestion.

If you wish to enjoy an occasional banana smoothie, make sure you add green cardamom, cinnamon powder or nutmeg powder to aid digestion with yoghurt.

Best time to drink milk

8. Orange Juice and Cereal

If you are thinking that a glass of juice along with your breakfast cereal is going to give you much-needed energy for the day, well, that may not be true.

Acids in orange juice or any acid fruits destroy the enzyme that is responsible for digesting the starches present in cereal. Also, acidic fruits or juices can curdle milk and turn it into a heavy mucus-forming substance.

To keep your breakfast healthy, try having fruit or orange juice 30 minutes before the oatmeal.

5 Reasons to Try Overnight Oats

9. Limes and cough medicine

Limes and several oranges, apart from the common grapefruit, are known to break down cholesterol-lowering statins including a cough suppressant, dextromethorphan (a well-known cough medication ). If not broken down, the medicine can build up in the bloodstream, causing various side effects.

The risk may involve dextromethorphan getting into the bloodstream and making you experience severe hallucination, sleepiness or sustained muscle damage. So we suggest you avoid lime juice the next time you have a tickly throat.

9 Remedies to Sore Throat

10. Iron-rich foods with coffee

If you love eating eggs and coffee together then unfortunately that combo is affecting the digestion of our entire meal.

The polyphenols and tannins in teas and chlorogenic acid in coffee block the absorption of iron by your body by binding with the iron during digestion. If you drink tea or coffee frequently after your meal, you could be making yourself anaemic by inhibiting the iron absorption from what you ate.

Many women show lower levels of iron, especially during menstruation, when a lack of iron can contribute to fatigue and mood swings. Drink less tea and coffee or try to drink it an hour before a meal, rather than after if you want to optimize iron absorption.

Superfoods to Soothe Your PMS Symptoms

11. Meat and Potatoes

One of the biggest noes is combining meat with a high starch carb such as potatoes. Even though this is a traditional lunch or dinner choice, it is shocking that this food mixture will potentially make you feel sick.

Proteins and starches need acidic and basic environment respectively to digest. If consumed together it will neutralize the digestive environment.

Meats (animal protein) and Potatoes (carbohydrates) consumed at the same time may negate the effects of each micronutrient. Protein is digested in the stomach while starch is digested in the small intestine. The digested protein will hold back the carb in the stomach and make it toxic. Their different enzyme activities will clash and cause gas and bloated stomach, discomfort and flatulence.

Meat and potatoes are indeed rich in calories, making them challenging for the body to process. They both have a lot of saturated fats in them. Furthermore, since it is low in fibre, it can induce constipation.

Chicken vs Fish

This list could go on forever with unhealthy food combinations, but now you know the basics you are one step closer to becoming a healthier person.

9 Smart Ways Of Successfully Controlling Your Junk Food Cravings

Don’t let a sweet tooth or carb craving prevent you from reaching your goals. Keep cravings in check with these practical methods.

No matter how mentally strong you may be, every once in a while, all of us cock a snook to their diet and give in to food cravings. While it is alright to cheat on your diet and allow yourself a small treat now and then, if you realise that it’s happening all too often, you need to take a step back, take stock and learn how to control those food cravings.

9 Foods That Prevent Cravings and Hunger Pangs

SO WHAT YOU CAN DO TO STOP CRAVINGS

Here are tips to help you reduce cravings which are ordered based on how fast you can act on them. So while you may be tempted to reach for the fastest ones, we encourage you to give all of them a try over the next few weeks for the best results.

GETTING YOUR SELF-CONTROL BACK ISN’T SO HARD, AFTER ALL

Food craving

1.Deal With Your Trigger Foods

Out of sight is usually out of mind

It’s much easier to give in to temptation when the food you crave is within easy reach. So don’t keep unhealthy foods you tend to crave in your kitchen or at your desk at work or wherever you are. This doesn’t mean you can’t keep any treats in the house, but select goodies that are easier for you to manage. Don’t stock up on sugar-filled peanut butter cups instead try our healthy peanut butter dessert treats.

2.Drink Some Water

The easiest thing you can do to curb your cravings is to have a large glass of water and wait for a couple of minutes. Even if the craving doesn’t completely go away, the fullness of your stomach will make it less intense.

Drinking a tall glass of water might serve as a distraction or it might solve your craving without adding any calories. If plain water sounds boring, add a slice or two of lemon, lime or cucumber. Try our Homemade Detox Water

Detox water

The best way to drink water for weight loss

3.Drink Some Coffee

Coffee might have a stronger influence on your appetite and food intake than water. It seems that coffee can suppress acute energy intake. What does that mean?

Right after drinking a cup of coffee people will eat less than they would have without it. So even if you end up giving in to a craving, you have a higher chance of keeping the size of your treat moderate and not going overboard. Another study found that decaffeinated coffee might help suppress the appetite even more!

4. Eat More Protein

Speaking of protein, breakfast isn’t the only meal to focus on. Multiple studies have found that increasing your protein intake to 25 per cent of your daily calories could reduce cravings by 60 per cent, helping you avoid thinking about food throughout the day.

Vegan meal

Protein is your ally against crazy cravings, here’s why:

• Increasing protein intake can reduce cravings

• Eating more protein can help fight the desire to eat at night

• Protein keeps you full longer 

6 Excellent Plant Protein Foods

5. Do A Light Workout

If you already exercise regularly, keep up the good work. And if you don’t, here’s a good reason to make it part of your daily routine.

Before you start rocking 100 burpees, think about this: an intense workout might make you feel even hungrier, but a low-intensity activity, such as a brisk walk or short bodyweight home workout can have the opposite effect. If you’re feeling playful, next time your cravings kick in try walking backwards.

And the best part? The more they exercised, the more their self-control increased—and that benefit lasted the entire time they kept up their workout regimen.

6.Get Enough Sleep

Lack of sleep is also known to cause food cravings, which is why you need to get adequate sleep each night.

Sleep deprived

Getting a good night’s sleep is easier said than done—there are countless Netflix shows to binge, after all. But when it comes to beating cravings, it’s probably the most effortless tactic.

One study showed being sleep deprived makes you more likely to crave junk food, and catching a proper amount of zzzs will ensure you have a little more self-control.

Surprising Reasons Why We Need To Sleep

7.Be More Mindful

Once a craving strikes, it’s hard not to act on it. But by being more mindful of your body and what it needs (not what it wants!), you’ll be able to pass on those urges before they get the best of you.

Common mindfulness-based techniques can significantly lower cravings.

By listening to your body, you’ll learn to accept them when they come and know they’ll naturally fade, but not give in to them. It sounds tricky and takes practice, but it can be done.

8.Don’t Let Yourself Get Too Hungry

Healthy eating
What happens when you skip a meal or refrain from eating when you’re truly hungry?
Sooner or later, you get SO hungry that you end up overeating to compensate.

It’s in this state of extreme hunger that we tend to crave quick-fix foods like candy bars. Eating several meals throughout the day may help to control cravings and binge-type eating. Try out our portable healthy snacks.

9.Substitute a healthier option

Satisfy your craving for something smooth and creamy with something low-fat or fat-free, such as yoghurt, pureed fruit or buttermilk. Eat a piece of fruit as a healthy sweet snack.

Craving a scoop of ice cream from the corner shop? Try making your own and sharing the recipe to make it healthier. Or, eat a better-for-you option — like a homemade energy bar or a stack of banana pancake— to satisfying your desire for sweetness.

Here are My Top 5 Healthier Sugar Alternatives to Try

The main thing is that you learn to tell the difference between actual hunger and cravings for sweet or salty foods. Follow our tips and soon you too will be able to understand your body’s signals.

Related: 11 Top Reasons Why You Should Stop Counting Calories

How Drinking Green Smoothies Every Morning Will Improve Your Life?

Many experts believe that a healthy lifestyle starts with a good breakfast. Research shows that there are significant benefits for those who “rise and dine” such as:

• A diet that is more nutritionally complete and higher in nutrients, vitamins and minerals

• Improved concentration and mental performance

• More physical strength and endurance

• Lower cholesterol levels

• Provides a metabolic boost that assists with weight management

13 tips towards health with reduced-fat

Yet with all of this research and overwhelming evidence showing the importance of eating a healthy breakfast, only one-third of adults who would like to eat breakfast, actually do eat it. We all know the culprit behind skipping breakfast–lack of time.

There is a solution.
One that is quick and simple to prepare, budget-friendly and most important -healthy!

Green Smoothies

Green smoothies are similar to traditional fruit smoothies, but contain more green veggies and can include spinach, lettuce, kale, collard greens, parsley, dandelion greens, watercress — any leafy green veggies your palate desires. Bananas, apples, pears, avocado, berries and mango are great companions for these types of smoothies and work well to enhance the overall flavour and texture.

Science-backed Smoothie To Boost your Life Expectancy

Green smoothie

Drinking Smoothies better than Eating Salad

Blending fruits and vegetables break down the cells of plants which improves digestibility. The blending action unlocks the nutrients and maximizes their delivery to your body better than chewing a salad could. Smoothies are an efficient and more convenient way to take advantage of all of the health benefits when compared to preparing and eating a salad – especially on the go.

With all the goodness of greens, combined with some deliciously tasty fruit, green smoothies for breakfast can help you make some healthy changes in your life.

9 Benefits of starting your day with a green smoothie

1.Rejuvenates The Body

Green smoothies are rich in chlorophyll which some natural health experts say enhances the immune system, purifies the blood and rejuvenates the body. Chlorophyll can prevent anaemia, assist with dental problems, reduce symptoms of sinusitis and even help treat insomnia.

Healthy body

2.Boost Brainpower

Leafy green vegetables are full of antioxidants and carotenoids, which boost your brainpower and help protect your brain. They are also full of B-vitamins, which are proven to help your memory, focus, and overall brain health and function. They are also rich in folic acid, which improves mental clarity and focus.

11 Brain-Boosting Beverages

3.Improves Digestion

Green smoothies use whole fruits and vegetables so that you get all of the fiber and nutrition. Fiber is essential for good colon health and it keeps your bowels in working order. These smoothies naturally combat constipation, help promote regularity and may even offer relief to the symptoms that are caused by common digestive disorders.

Gut health

7 natural constipation cures

4.Increases consumption of fruits & vegetables

We live busy lives that more than often causes us to forget about how important fruits and vegetables are during the day. Green smoothies are a quick and convenient way to get your vegetables and dark, leafy greens without tasting them. The fruit masks the flavour, so even though all you taste is fruit, you are still consuming a healthy dose of spinach, kale, carrots, and any other vegetable you add.

15 Highly Alkaline Natural Foods

By starting your day with a green smoothie, you are already consuming a lot of fruits and vegetables, which means you won’t have to worry about your daily intake as much as you usually have to.

Green juice

5.Uplift Mood

Green veggies contain lots of folic acids which is a natural antidepressant. The folate contained in greens helps fight memory loss and increases serotonin levels which result in improved moods. Also, the high concentrations of folic acid that are found in green leafy vegetables are known to help relieve the signs of depression. People who suffer from depression often have a folic acid (or folate) deficiency.

Food for every mood

6.Promotes Weight Loss

Green smoothies are packed with nutrition and are very low in calories. They contain the vitamins, minerals, healthy carbohydrates, fiber and low-fat whole food that you need to lose weight quickly, safely and effectively without starving yourself. They are also low in sugars found naturally in fruit and fruit juices making them a healthier option than traditional fruit smoothies and natural juices.

7.Clearer Skin

Clearer, radiant skin is an often-reported benefit to eating healthier. Smoothies are high in fiber and antioxidants which allow your body to eliminate toxins the right way instead of through your skin. The vitamin E found in green leafy vegetables works with vitamin C to keep skin healthy as you age. All of these substances work together to offer you a better complexion and clearer skin – without costing a fortune.

Clear skin

7 Celebrity Glowing Skin Smoothie Recipes

8.Improves Hydration

Water is an essential daily substance that we all need. Our bodies are mostly composed of water, and we need to keep our bodies hydrated to support our health.

Drinking green smoothies is not only a great way to trick yourself into eating your vegetables, but it is also an excellent way to ensure you get the water your body needs. 

Unfortunately, many people are not happy with the taste of water. By simply adding more water to your green breakfast smoothie, you can consume an additional amount of liquid, without even noticing it.

11 Signs When You Don’t Drink Enough Water

9.Fight Inflammation

Inflammation happens when your immune system is triggered without having any foreign invaders. This could be due to the foods you eat. You want to stay away from refined meals and beverages as they trigger the problem.

Anti inflammatory

Conversely, eating green leafy vegetables and fruits helps to tame inflammation. Examples include kale, cherries, collard, and oranges. All these foods found in green smoothies release natural antioxidants that fight inflammation.

Ultimate Guide for Treating Chronic Inflammation

Green smoothies are a great breakfast alternative. You will receive all of the benefits of eating breakfast while simultaneously reaping the benefits of eating your veggies.

Also read: Healthy Food Swaps That Fit People Live By

9 At-Home Natural Remedies to Ease Your Sore Throat

A sore throat caused by a viral infection usually lasts five to seven days and can be very uncomfortable but doesn’t require medical treatment.

The main symptoms are pain and irritation in the throat, especially when swallowing.

9 Trusted Foods To Eat That Fight the Common Cold

1.Saltwater Gargle

Types of salt

There’s a reason your mom or grandma probably told you to do this. Saltwater may not provide you with immediate relief, it is still an effective remedy for killing bacteria while loosening mucus and easing pain.

“A saltwater gargle helps with swelling and keeping the mouth clean. Most recipes suggest ¼ to ½ teaspoon of salt per cup of warm water.”

It’s safe (and easy on the wallet) to try several times a day.

Here is the Salt Guide

2.Honey

Honey benefits

Honey is one of the best remedies for a sore throat due to its natural antibacterial properties that allows it to act as a wound healer, immediately offering relief for pain while working to reduce inflammation.

Honey can also kill bacteria and help fight off viral infections. If you’re suffering from a bad cough in addition to your sore throat, honey may also act as an effective cough suppressant.

Mix two tablespoons of honey in with a warm glass of water or tea and stir it well. Drink several times a day as needed.

Read the surprising benefits of Honey

3.Lemon

Lemon water

Similar to saltwater and honey, lemons are great for sore throats because they can help break up mucus and provide pain relief. Lemon water is a refreshing beverage that may also reduce the throat pain that occurs during a cold or flu.

What’s more, lemons are packed with Vitamin C and other powerful antioxidants which can help to boost the immune system and give it more power to fight off your infection. Lemon also increases the amount of saliva the body produces, which can help keep the mucous membranes moist.

Mix one teaspoon of lemon juice into a glass of warm water and drink for quick relief. Or try combining lemon with warm water and a little honey or saltwater to maximize its benefits.

Lemon water contains vitamin C and compounds that can soothe a sore throat and assist with healing.

4. Apple cider vinegar

Apple cider vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is a natural health tonic. It has been a staple in folk medicine remedies for centuries. Its main active ingredient, acetic acid, helps fight bacteria.

A combination of apple cider vinegar and honey, called oxymel, to treat flu symptoms, such as coughs and sore throats.

Drink 1 cup of warm water mixed with 1 tablespoon (tbsp) of apple cider vinegar and 1 optional tbsp of honey.

The possible risks of apple cider vinegar include tooth decay and digestive problems.

Apple cider vinegar has antibacterial properties and, when a person mixes it in small amounts with warm water, could help relieve a sore throat.

5.Chicken soup

Weight loss soup

Chicken soup is a well-known natural cold and sore throat remedy. It is also a comfort food that allows people to get more fluids when they are sick.

Try adding garlic to the soup. Garlic contains bioactive compounds that can also provide benefits during times of illness.

A person can buy canned chicken soup ahead of time and store it until needed, or they can prepare a Homemade chicken soup.

Also try our healthy beetroot, Carrot, tomato soup, dairy-free pumpkin soup.

6.Turmeric milk

Turmeric latte

Another wonderful home remedy for throat infection from granny’s treasure trove, drinking turmeric milk has been considered to be the ancient tradition in our country.

It is known to treat a sore throat, cold and even persistent coughs. It can even relieve swelling and pain. In the world of Ayurveda, it is known as a natural antibiotic.

Try our Turmeric latte

7. Peppermint tea

Herbal tea

Peppermint tea contains anti-inflammatory compounds and is very soothing to the throat. The Mint may also slightly numb the throat, thereby relieving pain.

Peppermint tea is caffeine-free, and its naturally sweet taste often requires no additional sweetener.

To make peppermint tea at home, steep fresh peppermint leaves in boiling water for 3–5 minutes, then strain off the leaves.

Peppermint tea is a tasty, refreshing beverage that may help reduce inflammation and throat discomfort.

8.Chamomile tea

Herbal tea

Chamomile is a daisy-like plant that people have used for medicinal purposes since ancient times. It promotes restful sleep, which is important for healing.

Chamomile tea has a pleasant, mild aroma and flavour. Like other herbal teas, chamomile contains no caffeine.

Chamomile tea may promote restorative sleep, help fight infection, and soothe sore throat pain.

Here are Tea For Every Mood 

9.Cayenne pepper gargle

Cayenne pepper

Cayenne pepper contains capsaicin, which has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties.

Mixing ½ teaspoon of cayenne pepper with 1 cup of water and gargling with it can help reduce inflammation and clear the infection of a sore throat.

It takes several days of use to see improvement. Do not use a cayenne pepper gargle if there are open sores in the throat.

Delicious Spices With Most Powerful Health Benefits

Other Tips:

• Drinking warm liquids such as caffeine-free tea with lemon juice and honey, warm water with lemon and honey, or warm soup broth can be soothing to a sore throat.

• Drinking plenty of water or other fluids will ultimately make the throat feel better.

• Drink herbal infusions, water, or other beverages at whatever temperature feels most comfortable.

• Elevating your head when you sleep helps in a few ways. When you lay flat on your back, it increases pressure on your neck and can exacerbate symptoms in your throat.

Also read: 15 Highly Alkaline Foods That Will Help to Heal Your Body

You could also try Detoxpri’s Metabolism Boosting Plan to help boost your immune levels. It can help you prevent and remedy your sore throat, with its harmonious blend of holistic nutrition and healing techniques.

My Top 5 Healthier Sugar Alternatives to Try (And Sweeteners To Avoid)

Sugar addiction is the real deal!
we’re all human and cutting all sweeteners tomorrow isn’t realistic

Quitting this sweet drug of choice isn’t so simple, but knowing which types of sweeteners to choose can make all the difference in how you look, think, and feel.

How sugar affects your health

Sugar sweetens, preserves, and enhances the flavour of food. This makes it hard to avoid and resist, but the health benefits of reducing your sugar intake are clear. A diet high in sugar has been associated with a wide range of health conditions, either directly through its effect on the body or indirectly due to complications from obesity.

More obvious symptoms might be headaches, fatigue, and uncontrollable food cravings that impact us in different ways, most notably the quality of day-to-day life.
Several other chronic conditions that can be triggered by high sugar intake are as follows:

• Tooth decay and cavities

• Type 2 Diabetes

• Weight gain and obesity

• Poor nutrition

• High triglyceride levels

• Low Immunity

• Chromium Deficiency

• Faster Aging

• Stress Increase

How to choose the right sugar replacement for you?

It may be difficult to sort through all the sugar alternatives on the market to decide which one is right for you.

Are sugar alternatives a healthier option?

Whether or not sugar substitutes are a healthier choice for you depends on which type of sweetener you use, how much you use, and why you use it. 

Low-calorie sweeteners, or sugar substitutes, can allow people with diabetes to enjoy sweet foods and drinks that do not affect their blood sugar levels.

Top sugar substitutes and sweeteners

Now that we’ve covered some of the reasons to limit sugar intake and why you should consider healthier and more natural sugar substitutes for health, you’re probably wondering what are the best options for satisfying your sweet tooth.

1.Coconut sugar

We love all things coconut, coconut sugar included!

Coconut sugar
Coconut sugar comes from the nectar within the coconut blossoms which then goes through a natural processing technique to evaporate the water from the sap, allowing the nectar to crystalize.

The fructose content of coconut sugar is around 39% which is an unfortunate downside considering the other nutrients like zinc and iron plus the bonus of some antioxidants and a small amount of inulin fiber which works as a prebiotic to promote gut health. 

Also, read 9 Warning Signs You Have Poor Gut Health
Potential benefits: 

  • Coconut sugar is unrefined, so it retains all its vitamins and minerals, and doesn’t lead to fluctuations in blood sugar.
  • However, coconut sugar has the same amount of calories as table sugar, and it’s still high in carbohydrates and fructose. This means people looking to lose weight should limit it.
  • Also, it may not the best option for those who have diabetes.

Check out 8 Surprising Guilt-free Healthy Diabetes Snacks

How to use it:

Coconut sugar can be used as a 1-to-1 replacement for white or brown sugar, so it’s easy to use in the kitchen. However, it can be very coarse. You may want to grind it in a blender or food processor for a few moments before using it for baking or in place of powdered sugar.

Brand Pick: Sattvic Foods

2.Honey

Probably the oldest replacement for sugar all around the world, honey (please read “raw honey”, not the commercial type) is made without any processing.

Honey

Yes, it is almost half fructose, but its benefits as a cleansing substance, even having antibiotic properties, with antioxidants and B vitamins, both in internal and external usage make it one of the best choices for a healthy alternative to sugar. 

Also, read the surprising benefits of honey

Potential benefits:

  • Honey contains more nutrients than table sugar, including antioxidants, minerals, and vitamins.
  • Used as an additive to teas as a cold remedy, which is a great choice to add a little sweetness to your drink, but don’t overdo it. 
  • It’s also easier to digest than regular sugar. However, like table sugar, honey is high in calories and breaks down to glucose and fructose, so it poses some of the same health risks.

How to use it: 

Honey can be particularly tasty in smoothies, baked goods, sauces, marinades, and salad dressings.

Honey is sweeter than sugar, so you may have to reduce the amount you add.

Since there’s water in honey, you’ll also want to reduce the liquid you use when substituting honey in baked goods.

Brand Pick: Pahadi Kissan

3.Date paste

Date paste

Dates are rich in fiber, minerals, and vitamins, so using date paste as a sweetener to your recipes can add more nutritional value to your diet than simply using regular sugar.

Date paste is also an easy sugar alternative you can make at home in a blender using 3/4 cup of water, 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract, and about 1 cup of warm, pitted dates.

Potential benefits: 

  • Dates have a lower Glycaemic Index than normal sugar. Studies have shown that eating dates does not result in blood sugar spikes like eating sugar does. They’re therefore better for managing blood sugar levels and are beneficial sugar replacers for both non-diabetics and type 2 diabetics alike.
  • Dates are also packed with fibre. We need fibre to keep our bowels regular and healthy and eating a couple of dates a day helps keep our fibre intake topped up. We Brits are notoriously bad at eating enough fibre so dates can be a tasty, fibrous addition to our diet.
  • There’s also plenty of vitamins and minerals in dates. Date paste, since it’s just minced up dates, still contains all the same nutrients and has all the same benefits.

How to use it:

Dates can be particularly tasty in smoothies, baked goods, sauces, marinades, and salad dressings.

Date paste can be sweeter than sugar, so you’ll have to reduce both the amount you add and the amount of liquid when baking.

Type Pick: Medjool Dates, Omani Dates

4.Maple syrup

Think beyond pancakes and waffles. Maple syrup can be used in many different ways to add flavour to sweet and savoury dishes. It’s one of the most natural, unrefined sources of sugar out there. It also has a lot of antioxidants, including inflammation-fighting polyphenols.

Healthy pancake
Potential benefits: 

  • Maple syrup is high in antioxidants and rich in minerals, including calcium, potassium, iron, zinc, and manganese.
  • However, like other natural sweeteners, maple syrup is high in calories and should be consumed in moderation.

How to use it: 

Use it in healthier breakfast options such as oatmeal or plain yoghurt, or savoury dishes such as vegetables, chicken, salmon, or salad dressings.

You can also use maple syrup when baking — just be sure to reduce the number of liquids in the recipe.

Brand Pick: Urban Platter

5.Stevia extracts

This sweetener is made from the leaves of the Stevia Rebaudiana plant, which grows only in warm climates. Without any carbohydrates or calories, stevia doesn’t raise blood sugar, making it a great natural sugar substitute.

Stevia

Potential benefits:

  • Stevia is a plant extract with little-to-no calories. It’s also much sweeter than sugar, so you need less of it to provide the same amount of sweetness.
  • Since stevia extract is very low in calories, it’s considered a healthy sugar alternative for those who have diabetes or need to control their weight.

How to use it:

It comes in various forms, including powder and liquid, so you may need to experiment to find out which ones work best in different recipes. Stevia extract is also relatively stable in heat, so it can be used in cakes, sauces, and pastries.

Brand Pick: Ritestevia

Top 3 Sugar Substitutes To Avoid

1. Agave Syrup 

Although agave is natural sugar, don’t be fooled by the marketing hype.

Agave gained notoriety for its low glycemic index, it ultimately was shown to have a higher fructose content than high-fructose corn syrup (about 70% to 90%). It has been marketed as a healthier alternative, but it’s no better than the worst offenders.

It is highly sweet, replacing sugar with success, with lower amounts of the substance required.

However, it has 75-90% fructose, even more than high fructose corn syrup, which doesn’t metabolize, raising the blood sugar levels rapidly, which means that the skinny margarita that you ordered is a lot more harmful than you thought.

2. Artificial Sweeteners

Artificial and low-calorie sweeteners, such as aspartame, sucralose, saccharin, and neotame are considered the worst of the worst in the realm of alternative sweeteners.

Synthetic sweeteners like Sucralose (Splenda, Maltodextrin), Aspartame (Equal, Nutrasweet), Saccharin (Sweet N’ Low), and Acesulfame K (Ace K, Sunette, Sweet One) should be avoided altogether.

There’s plenty of anecdotal evidence that shows this stuff just isn’t that good for you.

Many people report headaches, stomach aches and a general ill feeling after eating artificial sweeteners. And some studies have shown that chemical sweeteners can change the bacterial makeup of your microbiome, throwing your entire gut health out of whack.
The major problem with all the sweeteners in this category is that they require additional chemicals like chlorine to create their low-calorie nature, which poses serious long term health risks.

3. High Fructose Corn Syrup

High-fructose corn syrup, which is made through a chemical process that’s anything but natural, is one of the worst offenders for insulin spikes, as it doesn’t have to be digested by your body. This stuff simply filters right into your bloodstream and goes wild.

what makes it so harmful?


With corn being one of the most common genetically modified crops, the majority of HFCS is produced using GMO corn, but that’s not the only issue. The problem is that just as the name suggests, this sugar alternative is extremely high in fructose.

The problem with fructose is highly concentrated forms is that it gets rapidly metabolized by the liver, which has downstream effects that contribute to non-alcoholic fatty liver disease ( NAFLD), insulin resistance, and obesity.

Tips for reducing sugar in your diet

Follow these steps to help reduce sugar in your diet daily:

• Choose to drink water, calorie-free beverages, or low-fat milk instead of sugary sodas and drinks.

• Choose whole fruits instead of processed desserts and fruit juices. When you do drink fruit juice, make sure it’s 100% fruit

• Add fruit to cereal instead of buying sweetened cereal or adding table sugar

• Use sugar-free preserves or fresh fruit to sweeten plain yoghurt instead of eating sweetened yoghurt with fruit in it

• Choose lower-calorie, sugar-free hot chocolate drinks instead of candy

• Snack on vegetables, fruit, low-fat cheese, or whole-wheat crackers

• Choose unsweetened products, such as unsweetened applesauce or nut kinds of butter

• Add flavours like vanilla, spices, or citrus to flavour foods and drinks.

When you do need a little sweetness, consult this list, choose the healthiest sugar substitute, and use the least amount possible.

So what’s next, try our healthy deserts recipes:

Healthy Dessert

1.Healthy Mango Recipes

2.Healthy Spiced Hot Chocolate

3.Irresistible Peanut Butter Desserts

4.Low-Calorie Makhana Kheer

5.Homemade Energy Bars

LUNG DETOX: Natural Foods & Herbs for Stronger, Healthier Lungs

Breathing in air pollution, cigarette smoke, and other toxins can damage the lungs and even cause health conditions.

Maintaining the health of the lungs is essential for keeping the rest of the body healthy.

The only function of the lungs is to allow the exchange of gases in the body and it works hard in collaboration with circulation to release oxygen in the blood and remove carbon dioxide from the body.

Mucus that is produced in the lungs is important and needs to be the right consistency, as it helps to trap and keep toxins, microbes, and pollutants out. All problems start when the consistency of mucus thickens or the mucus production increases.

Here are the best foods that are good for your lungs that experts recommend:

1.Drink Herbal Tea

The harmful effects of cigarette smoke – oxidative stress, inflammation, programmed cell death (apoptosis) and lung injury – were prevented by an infusion of black tea. Like many other food sources that can help improve lung health, it seems to be the tea’s high antioxidant content that provides the benefits.

Read The Health Benefits of Drinking Premium Teas

Herbal tea

Tip: Choose black tea over black coffee as a morning warm-up or an afternoon pick-me-up.

Green tea

Having herbal green tea before going to bed is a great way to keep your lungs healthy and pure. If you are a smoker you must opt for this solution daily. This is an option that works wonder for the lungs.

2.Practice Eucalyptus or peppermint oil Steaming

Both oils act as an antioxidant and fights harmful organisms. These help to ease a cough, fight against congestion and soothe an irritated sinus passage. Clearing the mucus lining will help in the cleansing of lungs, the ability to relax muscles of the respiratory tract and promote free breathing. 

Eucalyptus oil helps soothe airways, loosen and expel mucus from the lungs and relax the brain and body. There are a few different ways you can incorporate eucalyptus steaming into your life:
The first choice would be to steam with a nebuliser, but if you don’t have one of those, do not fret. 

– Hang fresh eucalyptus in the shower and make it super steamy.

-Add a few drops of eucalyptus oil to a bowl of boiling water (place a towel over your head to make a tent to contain steam) then close your eyes and slowly breathe in the vapours for 10 minutes.

The American Cancer Society points to peppermint oil for treating ailments of the lungs, while recent research shows that the herb may help athletes breathe better. Peppermint essential oil improves respiratory rates because the mint relaxes bronchial muscles.

Tip: Add 3 to 4 drops to hot water for inhalation, which is the dosage recommended by the American Cancer Society.

3.Consume a Large Quantity of Vitamin C

Vitamin C is an essential micronutrient. It helps maintain the electrochemical balance of the body, provides anti-oxidants and – most importantly – enhances and empowers the immune system.

It does this by supporting the epithelial barrier function (preventing pathogens from getting in via thinner skin in the nose, mouth and around other orifices), protecting the body from oxidative stress and preventing microbial infestation. It also plays a role in controlling the production of different immune cells and may even help regulate gene expression. So it’s pretty powerful.

Some of the most notable are: 

Immunity boost

Oranges: An oldie but a goodie, and it’s an orange season! 100 grams of orange (or 100ml of cold-pressed orange juice) provides 88% of your recommended daily allowance (RDA) for vitamin C.

Baobab: Although slightly more scarce and a little less palatable, baobab is one of the richest sources of vitamin C in the world – with just 10g of the powder providing half your recommended RDA.

Lemon juice: You can take one-two glass of lemon juice before you go to bed. Apart from other health benefits of lemon juice, it plays a crucial role in detoxifying your lungs.

• Moreover, pineapple is known for the reduction of swelling and coughing. Additionally, it contains the enzyme bromelain which eliminates the debris from the lungs and detoxifying it naturally.

• An apple a day may keep lung problems at bay. Those who had five or more apples per week had slightly better overall lung function. Quercetin, an antioxidant found in apples, may help protect the lungs against smoke and other pollutants.

4. Eat/ drink immune-boosting foods

Juicing is an incredible way of getting in an abundance of bioavailable live nutrients deliciously and conveniently.

Also read: Low carb immunity-boosting foods

Here are a few foods to incorporate to keep your immunity strong:

Ginger

Mushrooms: Besides containing selenium, which can help prevent the development of severe flu, mushrooms also contain B vitamins, niacin and riboflavin, which help keep the immune system healthy. Mushrooms such as reishi also function as adaptogens, helping your body find full homeostatic balance by working intelligently on hormonal, endocrine, nervous, immune and organ systems. 

Ginger: This root is full of antioxidants, zinc, calcium and magnesium.

It’s often something we turn to once we’re already sick, but prevention is the name of the game right now, and a study proved FRESH ginger had immune-boosting and anti-viral properties against respiratory ailments.

Garlic: This has been proven to boost the immune system and lessen the severity of cold and flu symptoms. One of the major components of garlic that helps with this is allicin, a type of sulphur, which strengthens immunity and aids digestion.

Turmeric: This contains the compound curcumin, which is what gives the spice its bright, vibrant yellow colour. Curcumin has been proven to have anti-inflammatory properties and boost immune cell function.

Try our tasty turmeric latte recipe

Dark leafy greens, and green vegetables in general, provide minerals such as calcium, zinc, folates and antioxidants. Green veggies also have lots of great fibre that help our gut stay balanced and healthy. (Think broccoli, spinach and kale)

Fermented foods: Probiotics are very important for keeping the gut healthy – and if the gut isn’t healthy, the immune system won’t be strong. So eat lots of fermented foods like sauerkraut, raw apple cider vinegar, kimchi, yoghurt and miso.

Kombucha

Add these Indian fermented to your daily diet

5.Eating bee products like Honey, Pollen, etc

While this one may not be so popular but we can’t ignore the power of bee products in boosting immunity. From the more common honey to the rarest of propolis, the bee kingdom has an abundance of natural miracles to offer:

Honey: A traditional home remedy for any kind of fluey ailment, the soothing and anti-microbial properties of honey helpline the throat and kill any invaders in the mouth.

Also, read the interesting facts about honey

Honey

Bee Pollen: Known as complete survival food, the power of pollen lies in its nutritional diversity. Because one bottle of this bee magic is made from the pollen of hundreds of different species of flowers, each with its amino-acid profile, it’s a nutrient dream packed with the widest variety of plant proteins of any food. If you’re super lucky you’ll find something called ‘bee bread’ which is the pre-digested form of pollen that the bees have fermented inside the hive.

Propolis: This is a sticky black resin that bees lay down at the entrance of their hives and pack in any cracks to keep invaders out. As it enters, each bee rubs itself on the layer of resin coating the entrance. This functions as an anti-bacterial/fungal/viral bath, killing any pathogens they may have picked up. Propolis is made from a combination of tree resins, pollen and honey and makes a potent pathogen killer for humans, too.

6.Try out other Healing Herbs

Basil: Basil is a key ingredient in cough syrups. In India, this herb is considered auspicious and it has many medicinal properties, one of which is to reduce congestion and clear up the lungs.

Oregano: The active components (Carvacrol and Rosmarinic acid) present in oregano helps in detoxification as they act as natural decongestants and thus, have a cleansing effect on the respiratory tract.  

Also read: 9 Warning Signs You Have Poor Gut Health