Brazil faces significant challenges in relation to nutrition, from malnutrition to obesity. According to the latest National Health Survey , in Brazil, the obesity rate increased from 20.8% in 2013 to 25.9% in 2019. Furthermore, malnutrition is also a problem, especially among the most needy families, and who commonly depend on processed and ultra-processed foods. See, now, which are the 10 worst foods that frequently appear on Brazilian tables.
worst foods consumed by Brazilians
After all, what are the 10 worst foods?
In the list of the worst foods consumed by Brazilians, the following stand out:
- Soft drinks (diet or regular);
- Processed meats (bacon, sausages, nuggets and canned goods, for example);
- Ice cream;
- filled biscuits;
- Stuffed churros;
- Hot dog;
- packaged snacks;
- Instant noodles.
According to the nutritionist, it is easy to identify when a food is unhealthy: just look at its list of ingredients. “A large number of ingredients and the presence of unfamiliar names, such as hydrogenated vegetable fat, fructose syrup, thickener, flavoring or coloring indicate that the product is ultra-processed”, she explains.
The problem is that most ultra-processed foods are consumed instead of healthy foods, such as fruit, milk and water, for example. Therefore, these foods should be avoided or their consumption reduced. “Furthermore, they encourage excessive calorie consumption, impair the feeling of satiety and are formulated to be extremely tasty, encouraging “eating without stopping”, warns the nutritionist.
Foods that “fill” vs. foods that nourish
Identifying and selecting foods is essential for good nutrition and avoiding the consumption of foods with “empty calories”. “These are foods that fill, but do not nourish. It has great flavor, comes in large quantities, but does not satisfy or nourish the body to stay healthy, restore energy and recover from everyday effort, be it physical or mental”, says Bononi.
Healthier option: fresh foods
Fresh foods should be the basis of all diets. They are obtained directly from plants or animals, do not undergo any modification after leaving nature or have been minimally processed, such as removing inedible or undesirable parts, fermentation, pasteurization or freezing, to reach the consumer with quality. These foods do not contain salt, sugar , oils, fats, or other ingredients. For example:
- Vegetables (vegetables) and fruits, fresh or packaged, divided into portions, chilled or frozen;
- Rice, corn (in grain or on the cob) and other cereal grains;
- Beans (black, carioca, black-eyed, red, pigeon pea, white, etc.);
- Fruit juice (natural or pasteurized and without added sugar or other substances);
- Cassava, corn or wheat flour
- Fresh or dried noodles or pasta made with these flours and water;
- Fresh, chilled or frozen beef, pork, poultry and fish;
- Pasteurized, UHT or powdered milk;
- Yogurt (no added sugar);
- Tea, coffee, drinking water;