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Is dropping bad food habits beneficial?

London, Jan 22 : Be it carbohydrate-rich food items or chocolate, several Britishers gave up something at the beginning of the year to be healthy. But is striking out a food habit actually beneficial?


There is a list of most common shunned food items along with their benefits and drawbacks, reports dailystar.co.uk:

1. Chocolate: People tend to quit eating chocolates as experts say eating them means there is an increase in the consumption of sugar which is not too good for the body.

Celebrity quitters: Music mogul Simon Cowell recently cut out chocolates to stay healthy.

Pros: American scientists have found that people who eat chocolate a few times a week are actually likely to be thinner than those who eat it very occasionally. Studies suggest chocolate may be good for the heart, brain and even your skin.

Cons: The average chocolate bar contains 250 calories, lots of fat and sugar. Too much could lead to weight gain and excess sugar is linked to diabetes and tooth decay.

2. Coffee: The caffeine in coffee can make people feel dependent on it.

Celeb quitters: Hollywood star Tom Hanks gave up coffee to lose weight while singer Katy Perry did it to improve her complexion. She swapped coffee for green tea.

Pros: Drinking coffee has been linked with lots of health benefits, mainly thanks to the antioxidants it contains. Studies have shown it could cut the risk of diabetes and even breast cancer.

Cons: A typical latte contains five gm of fat and around 225 calories. Excessive coffee intake can increase blood pressure and, instead of perking you up, it can actually make you feel more tired.

3. Carbohydrates: People assume that bread, pasta and potatoes make the body store excess fat.

Celeb quitters: "Celebrity Big Brother" star Sam Faiers went from a size 10 to a size 8 after ditching carbohydrates.

Pros: There's evidence that avoiding carbohydrates can help the body to burn fat stores. Swedish research found that low carbohydrate diets were better than low fat diets for weight loss.

Cons: Experts have found that people who cut out carbohydrates completely perform worse in mental tests. There is also evidence that people on low-carbohydrate diets have higher rates of heart disease and strokes.

--IANS (Posted on 22-01-2014)

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