11 foods you should avoid and what to eat instead

Healthy eating doesn't have to be hard!
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We all know our diet should contain more fruit and veg and less lollies, chips and chocolate, but there are some foods which you really should avoid altogether.

While it’s ok to indulge every now and then, here are the foods which you should consider cutting out of your diet for good.

1. Jelly and gummy lollies

Next time you reach for a handful of jelly beans or gummy bears, think about what you’re eating. They are basically made up of pure sugar. While you will have a quick pick me up, it will be followed by a complete crash.

Replace it with: A handful of nuts or seeds will keep you fuller for longer and help you to sustain energy.

Gummy bears are basically made up of pure sugar.

(Image: Getty Images)

2. Rice crackers/cruskits/corn thins (you can choose – they’re all the same!)

You know the feeling these have when you bite into them and they disappear? They do the same in your stomach, digesting very quickly meaning you’ll be hungry again not long after you’ve eaten them.

Replace it with: A wholegrain crispbread like Vita-Weats or Ryvitas with lots of grains. The more grains you can see, the longer they’ll take to digest and the more satisfied you’ll be, avoiding the return munchies until dinner time.

3. Tomato sauce

Yes – it tastes great with a party pie and chips, but tomato sauce is full of sugar and preservatives. While it is ok every once in a while, it certainly shouldn’t be put on everything.

Replace it with: Homemade tomato chutney or fresh homemade salsa are two much healthier options.

Try whipping up a fresh homemade salsa with fresh tomatoes.

(Image: Getty Images)

4. White bread

While you shouldn’t cut our carbs completely, you should consider the type of carbs you do consume. Most white bread is low in fibre and very quick to digest (high-GI) and won’t keep you feeling satisfied, so before long you will be reaching for a snack.

Replace it with: Choose a bread that is made up of whole grains, it will keep you fuller for longer and will benefit your digestive health, too.

5. Chocolate

Chocolate is actually good for you (in moderation), but it is the type of chocolate you consume that can get you into trouble. Chocolate that has less than 70 percent cocoa is usually high in sugar and fat, low in antioxidants (the good stuff in chocolate) and you are better off not eating it at all.

Replace it with: If you want to cure a chocolate craving, a small amount of dark chocolate is best.

WATCH: Why dark chocolate is actually good for you. Post continues after video…

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6. Frozen yogurt

While it may appear to be a healthy choice, some frozen yogurts can have as much sugar and fat as ice-cream. The kilojoules only increase when toppings including lollies, chocolate and syrups are added.

Replace it with: Greek yogurt is a healthy low fat option and can be sweetened up seasonal fruits including berries and mangoes.

7. Processed meats

Processed meats such as salami, ham, devon and proscuitto is extremely high in salt, saturated fat and contains preservatives (nitrites and nitrates) which have been linked to stomach and bowel cancers.

Replace with: Other sources of protein such as chicken breast, tinned tuna, smoked salmon or roast beef, they’re still high in protein but minus the nasties.

Processed meats have been linked to stomach and bowel cancers.

(Image: Getty Images)

8. Artificial sweeteners

Some research suggests that artificial sweeteners have the same amount of calories as sugar itself and are just as bad for your waist line and your overall health.

Replace it with: While sugar isn’t good for you either, there are some natural sweet options such as honey and maple syrup which, when used in moderation, contain vitamins and minerals.

9. Store bought cake frosting

While it is convenient and delicious, tins of cake frosting are packed with problems! They are high in sugar and can contain trans fats, which can cause a number of health issues including diabetes and heart disease.

Replace it with: Always make the frosting yourself so you know exactly what’s in it. If you want a really healthy version, try using raw ingredients like blended nuts or honey instead of butter or cream cheese.

When baking, avoid store bought frosting and use your own with healthy, natural ingredients.

(Image: Getty Images)

10. Frozen dinners

While frozen dinners are convenient, most have limited nutrients with small servings of vegetables and may also be packed with preservatives.

Replace it with: Your own frozen meals are just as easy to defrost. When cooking, make extra and freeze in meal size potions. They are just as convenient as frozen meals and have more nutritional benefits.

11. Diet soft drink

Don’t be fooled, diet doesn’t always mean healthy. In fact, diet soft drinks are made up of artificial ingredients and flavourings, which offer no health benefits.

Replace it with: The best drink you can give your body is water. It’s hydrating and the healthiest option. Try with a squeeze of lemon or lime if you want a bit of flavour.

They may look glame, but diet soft drinks contain heaps of artificial ingredients and flavourings.

(Image: Instagram @selenagomez)

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