6 Secret Ways to Spot HIDDEN Processed Foods

“Avoid eating processed foods,”—If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a thousand times.

The reason why is simple. These Frankenfoods are designed to satisfy your taste buds. But they leave your body full of foreign chemicals that can cause harm and in need of more nutrients.

But a patient asked me the other day, “How do I know if it’s processed?”

It’s an excellent question. And I have the answer…

The truth is, when you go grocery shopping, you should look for minimally processed foods instead of unprocessed ones.

Because the moment a food is cut, cleaned, and prepared for consumer use, it’s technically minimally processed. These foods are generally easy to spot, such as fruits, vegetables, and eggs, along with some meat and dairy products.

However, I’ll admit it’s not always obvious which foods have been highly manipluated. That’s when these six secret ways to spot processed foods come in handy…

  • Long ingredient lists: The more ingredients a food item contains, the more likely it is to be heavily processed. Look for foods with shorter, uncomplicated ingredient lists.
  • Ingredients you can’t pronounce: Chemical-sounding ingredients like maltodextrin, sodium nitrate, carrageenan, and others signal that food scientists have formulated the food with less than natural ingredients. Stick to products with everyday, natural ingredients.
  • Health claims on the packaging: When food products make flashy claims about health benefits or added nutrients, it’s often to distract from the fact that they’re actually highly processed. Whole foods that are naturally healthy typically don’t use this kind of advertising.
  • More sugar than you’d expect: Added sugars are snuck into processed foods to make them taste better. Check the sugar content, and if it looks like more than what you’d expect to see in a natural food, be wary.
  • Shelf stability: Food that seems like it never goes bad has likely been processed to resist spoilage. Preservatives and processing techniques can allow some products to last for months or even years. In general, the less processed a food is, the shorter its shelf life.
  • Hyper-palatability: Food scientists literally design junk foods to taste as delicious as possible. This is known in the industry as “the bliss point,” and the goal is to make them taste almost addictive. The flavors, mouthfeel, and textures have been carefully engineered to overstimulate your senses. Whole foods nourish, while processed foods simply thrill your taste buds.

Keep an eye out for these processed foods’ red flags. They can help you make better, healthier choices when you go grocery shopping.

P.S. Dodge the damage caused by junk foods with THIS simple but powerful nutrient hack.

Dr. Scott Olson, ND

Written By Dr. Scott Olson, ND

Nearly 25 years ago, failed mainstream medical treatments left Dr. Olson in constant pain – and his health in ruins. And that’s when he did something REVOLUTIONARY. He began his career in medicine – and dedicated his life to uncovering the true, underlying causes of disease.
Through his innovative medical practices in Tennessee and Colorado, Dr. Olson has helped cure countless seniors from across America of arthritis… heart disease… diabetes… and even cancer. All without risky prescription drugs or painful surgeries.

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