Five foods to avoid include processed meats, fried potato products, creamy condiments, high-fat dairy products and sugary drinks. These foods contain ingredients and chemicals that can negatively affect a person's health.
Processed meats may be low in calories and fat, but most are very high in sodium and contain potentially carcinogenic preservatives, such as nitrites. Processed meats include hot dogs, sausage and deli meats.
Fried potato products such as French fries, hash browns and potato chips are high in fat, calories and, in many cases, salt. In addition, potatoes fried at high temperatures may contain acrylamide, a suspected carcinogen.
Creamy condiments, such as mayonnaise and salad dressing, are high in calories and saturated fat. Calorie counts on package labels are deceiving because most people use more than the serving size quoted on the label.
High-fat dairy products include whole milk, premium ice cream and butter. These foods are high in calories, saturated fats and trans fats. Lower-fat and trans-fat-free versions of these foods are available; however, certain substitutes, such as margarine, aren't necessarily healthy.
Sugary drinks, including fruit juices, add a lot of calories but very few nutrients. Water, plain or infused with fruit, should make up most of the fluids consumed each day. Unsweetened, freshly brewed herbal teas and moderate amounts of low-fat or fat-free milk make good choices, too.