Healthy Food Vs Junk Food: What You Need to Know

Parul Dube

July 1, 2022

In today’s fast-acting life, junk food is the saviour. It is easy to make and easily accessible and tastes so good. Junk Food has gained significant popularity in India within 20-30 years. Of course, junk foods are tasty, but are they healthy? Not at all, but we are so busy and need quick gratifications that we depend on fast foods, that are generally not so healthy. 

Junk food contains saturated fats, trans-fat, and higher sodium levels that are not good for the body. They do not break down to provide energy. Instead, they get deposited in the body and become the root cause of weight gain. As junk foods are high in calories and lack nutrients, we probably end up eating extra calories, overeating, or binge eating.

Unhealthy foods may lead to many health problems like obesity, high cholesterol, type-2 diabetes, heart stroke. An overweight or obese person is more likely to have diabetes. Since diabetes damages the blood vessels, the chances of getting a severe illness becomes high.

High cholesterol can let fatty deposits develop in the blood vessels. As they grow, the blood flow through arteries becomes perverse. Breaking of those deposits can form a clot and lead to heart stroke or attack. A balanced diet is, therefore, necessary to stay healthy. A balanced diet is when we consume all the macronutrients in the right balance and check on micronutrients, too. 

Junk foods taste good and are addictive. Therefore, it often becomes difficult to quit them. Still, if you want to follow healthy snacking that is no more time-consuming, here is something that you would love!

Healthy Food Vs Junk Food 

Snacking is fun. We are not asking you to compromise on tasty food consumption. However, here are some effortless healthy swaps that are easily doable and easy to prepare with easily accessible ingredients:

1. Potato Chips vs Whole Wheat Methi Khakhra

Potato chips are a lip-smacking snack that one can easily binge on without realizing that they have overeaten them. High in Trans fat and sodium contribute to bad fats in your body that eventually make you obese.

On the other hand, a whole wheat methi khakhra is nutritious and healthy, providing you with just 89 calories, unlike a pack of potato chips that gives 194 calories. A whole-wheat khakhra is not just healthy but tasty too. You can easily swap it over potato chips.

2. Aloo Papri Chaat vs Sprouts Chaat

Who does not love aloo papri chaat? Of course, everybody craves for at least one plate, but do you stop at just one serving? Sometimes you might not control your cravings and overeat.

But do you know, just one serving of this can give you around 334 calories. Isn’t it too much for a small plate of papri chaat? Yes, it is. But here, we have got a very nutritious swap for the dish. Yes, it’s a sprouts chaat, a good source of iron, protein and fibre. A bowl of it contains just 55 calories.

3. Cream Bun vs Peanut Butter Banana Toast

A cream bun has high sugar content. The bun’s main ingredient is refined flour, and the dough is sweetened to make it tastier. Powdered sugar is another ingredient to glaze the bun as soon as it comes out of the oven.

Sugar cravings are common, but consuming a large amount of sugar can be harmful to your health. Therefore, a perfect swap for a cream bun is a peanut butter banana toast. 

Read more: 8 Proven Health Benefits of Banana

Naturally sweetened banana is apt for your sugar cravings, and the peanut butter makes it a lot tastier. Packed with good fats and carbs, it is anytime above the cream bun. A cream bun contains 265 calories, but a peanut butter banana toast loaded with nutrients gives you just 203 calories.

4. Energy Drink vs Lime-mint Juice

An energy drink is supposed to boost your energy to carry out your workouts or get instant energy. But do you know, the artificial flavours it has and the hidden sugars that you might want to avoid? But rather than avoiding it, these energy drinks trick you on this part. Sugar turns into glucose to provide energy.

It is the truth behind the energy drinks you consume. So a lime-mint juice instead is the right choice if you want to rejuvenate. To your surprise, a bottle of lime-mint juice gives just two calories, but a can of energy drink gives 101 calories.

5. Choco-pie vs Mixed Fruit Bowl

Choco-pie is one of the tastiest sweet dishes anyone can have. It is a perfect combo of chocolate on the outside and a biscuit inside with marshmallows. It is delicious but similar to a cream bun, high in sugar content. One choco-pie gives you 100 calories, and these are too many calories from a small pie.

On the other hand, if you swap it with a mixed fruit bowl, you get just 84 calories. Yes, a bowl full of fruits is not just fewer in calories but also keeps you satiated for a long time, fulfilling your sugar cravings.

So, you see how you can swap your junk food for healthy foods with no effort to make them, and all these are so readily available in everybody’s kitchen. All these alternatives are not just healthy, but also very tasty. They can for sure fulfil all the cravings that your taste buds urge and are a sure-shot way to get you on track with a healthy lifestyle. With these healthy swaps, you will feel a change in your energy levels and notice visible differences in your waistline and overall weight. 

About the Author

Parul holds a Masters of Medical Science in Public Health Nutrition from the University of Glasgow, Scotland, and has worked across the globe from the U.K to New Zealand (NZ) gaining her License with the Health Professionals Council (HPC, UK) and the NZ Nutrition Council. From being a Gold medalist in Clinical Nutrition to being awarded an internship with World Health Organisation (WHO, Cairo, Egypt) and Contracts with CDC Parul has had a wide spectrum of work experiences. She is very passionate about Nutrition and Fitness and holds strong to her guiding mantras ‘ Move more’ and ‘Eat Food that your grandmother can recognize’!

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