Limit Processed Foods to Not More Than One Serving Daily

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Limit Processed Foods to Not More Than One Serving Daily

18 Feb , 2021  


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Did you know that limiting processed food to 1 serving or less each day reduces risk of premature death by up to 62%?

Processed foods are ready to eat manufactured foods with low nutritional quality and high energy density.  They have fiber removed, and salt, sugar and fat added.

Processed foods are ubiquitous in the American diet. Examples of processed foods include breakfast cereal, pastries, muffins, doughnuts, bacon, sausage, deli meats, fried foods (eg, french fries), pizza, sweet or savory packaged snacks (eg, potato chips), candy, microwave dinners, margarine, cake, cookies, brownies, ice cream, and sweetened beverages.

Why are processed foods bad for you?  Processed foods increase risk of obesity, diabetes, cancer, hypertension, heart disease, and premature death from all causes.  The harm from processed foods comes from chemicals including acrylamide, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, heterocyclic amines, and furanes. That’s just the chemicals in the food.  The chemicals in the packaging also harm health including phthalates and bisphenol A.

Besides the chemicals, the problem with processed foods are the added sugar, the salt, and the extra fat. And processed foods displace the healthier whole foods so eating processed foods means eating less fiver and antioxidants.

Despite the serious health risk from processed foods, the average American gets 60% of their daily calories from processed foods.  Since 1990, processed food intake in the U.S. has tripled.

But limiting processed food to 1 serving or less per day sounds like a lot to ask. Americans have shifted to a diet of prepared food, and processed food, and have moved away from a diet rich in whole plant foods. Is there a way to limit processed foods to 1 serving or less per day in the modern food environment?

There most certainly is! in this course, Dr. Cohen, a primary care doctor in San Francisco, shares with you effective and delicious strategies for limiting or eliminating processed foods from your diet.

The course begins with an introduction to nutrition.  Dr. Cohen explains how our food environment has made it increasingly difficult to eat healthfully. He proposes a shift back to preparing our own food, from fresh ingredients we buy, including a diet without processed foods.    Next, he’ll share with you the medical research that shows the benefits of diets rich in whole foods and low in processed foods. You’ll learn about the role of aggressive marketing, hyperpalatable and hyper-convenient foods in our food environment.  You’ll learn about choice architecture for avoiding bad choices. Next, he’ll share with you tips for meal planning, grocery shopping, and food preparation, to make going without processed food easy and delicious. Finally, you’ll hear the answers to frequently asked questions, followed by a summary of the information presented.

Who this course is for:

  • Anyone interested in optimizing health and extending lifespan

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