It’s time to admit it: we are is bizarrely excited about eating. Not only do we queue (willingly) for hours to enter the latest restaurant, café or bar, we’ll happily spend enormous amounts of free time (willingly) scrolling through endless images of immaculately prepared dishes.
To prepare for summer, here are the seven foodie trends that aren’t as healthy as you think.
Before you take a pitchfork to TUL HQ, hear our avocado loving hearts out! Avocados are promoted as a great healthy fat for a lot of good reasons – they’re a fantastic replacement for butter plus these green fruits are loaded with potassium, fibre and antioxidants. But that doesn’t make piling an entire avocado with sodium-high feta and plenty salt on white sourdough count as a healthy breakfast. Avocados have a relatively high-calorie count, so you should say goodbye to consuming $10 worth of avocados a day.
I’d like to go one day without a soup-bowl sized, rainbow coloured, flower-filled acai bowl appearing on Instagram. Layered with seasonal fruits (where does everyone even find Dragonfruit) in perfect concentric circles, these picture-perfect bowls don’t always live up to their healthy namesake. You’re essentially spooning up a (admittedly naturally) sweet, Hulk-sized fruit smoothie topped with sugar and carb-heavy toppings. It’s great for an antioxidant boost, but don’t pen it as your regular breakfast.
The ping-pong ball of clean eating – even experts can’t seem to decide with finality whether or not coconut is really, really good or really, really bad. Coconut is naturally extremely high in saturated fat, yet many swear by its ability to boost metabolism and energy. Everything in moderation, we say! So not drinking two fresh coconuts with coconut flakes mixed with canned coconut milk and coconut water. No coco-go.
Juices And Smoothies
If you’re gulping down a fruit-only juice or smoothie, you’re probably consuming way too much sugar in one health-disguised hit. Yes, fruit isn’t inherently bad for you, but lots of fruit naturally contains high amounts of sugar so blending your daily recommended intake (the equivalent of a medium apple and banana) into one misguided morning meal replacement will make you susceptible to snacking later in the day. Adding green vegetables like kale and spinach makes it a little healthier, but liquids are known to make you feel significantly less full than solid food with the same amount of calories.
Put the non-fat yoghurt down and check the nutritional label – some of our favourite (and admittedly delicious) yoghurt brands contain well over your daily sugar intake in a single serve. Make sure you’re checking how much sugar is in your humble morning breakfast yoghurt. Yoghurt is an excellent source of protein and calcium, so pick up the plain or Greek yoghurt versions instead of unnaturally sweetened flavours.
If you have a dietary requirement, allergy or intolerance, this clearly doesn’t apply to you. But swapping out your morning cup of full cream milk for coconut or almond might be doing more harm than good – not just to your tastebuds. If you’re struggling with your protein intake – coconut and almond milk have no to very little protein in every serve. Coconut milk is also much higher in fat.
Think that vegan brownie doesn’t count as a dessert? Time to rethink. Vegan desserts may be made up of natural sugar alternatives like maple syrup—but it’s easy to forget these sugars (unfortunately) are still added sugars. Similarly, vegan desserts tend to use dried fruits like dates, nuts, nut flours and coconut milk to replace usual cooking staples. These ingredients, while all natural and much better than traditional cooking ingredients, are extremely calorie-dense.
Looking for a healthy hit list? Check out the 47 Healthy Melbourne Breakfasts You'll Actually Want To Eat!
Image credit: Rustica Canteen, Helena Rae for The Urban List.