healthHealth and Medicine

These Food Comparisons May Make You Rethink Your Diet

Dieting is out and clean eating is in. Swap your pasta for zucchini noodles and you too can be as slim and "healthy" as your favorite food blogger.



Unsurprisingly, the movement's faced an enormous backlash. Not only is the science behind it complete BS, but by ascribing to a "clean-eating" diet (that actually removes several important food groups), you are denying your body important nutrients. Not to mention the fact labeling foods "pure" and "dirty" can seriously mess with your mental health.

Luckily "clean eating" gurus are on the wane, and the Internet is craving someone like London-based fitness blogger, The Fashion Fitness Foodie (aka Lucy Mountain), to talk some sense.

Mountain started the Instagram account theFFFeed at the end of June and has already racked up 15.8k followers. Here, she posts food comparisons, pointing out the ridiculousness of labeling foods "healthy" and "unhealthy". She hopes that by doing so, it will encourage others to see the pointlessness in it too.

She points out that just because something is marketed as "healthy", doesn't make it so. Take "healthy" breakfast food, Belvita biscuits, as an example.

"They're practically the same calories and macros, with the digestive biscuits being a fraction higher in protein and lower in sugar than Belvitas." @thefffeed/Instagram 

Even portion sizes can be deceiving. 

"A prime example of misleading labeling, which is all too common in the 'health food' market." @thefffeed/Instagram

Mountain might not believe in labeling but she does believe in moderation. "I'm a firm advocate of everything in moderation, no matter what my fitness goal might be. Fat-loss, muscle gain, maintenance or no-goal-whatsoever." 

"Occasionally I’m the left hand, but mostly I’m the right hand...‘Healthy' to me is exactly what I make it. And Fruit Pastels (in moderation) make me happy, which I believe contributes largely to my overall health" @theFFFeed/Instagram  

She also points out that there is an association between "free from", "healthy" and "weight loss" – but says that there shouldn't be. "'Free from' should not be treated as an indication of 'healthier' unless you have a genuine intolerance," she (and pretty much every doctor you'll meet) says.

"Buying 'Free From' food is like the Von Dutch cap of 2017. It's incredibly 'trendy' and it just shouldn't be." @theFFFeed/Instagram

Another thing she tells her followers: it's not all about calories. As Mountain says: "Neither of these bowls is 'good' or 'bad'". It depends on your goals. If you're looking to lose weight, you might want to pick the left bowl. If you want to up your macronutrient intake (or just think it looks damn delicious), you might want to pick up the right bowl.

"Neither of these bowls is 'good' or 'bad'. None of these ingredients are 'good' or 'bad'. They are just bowls of oats with different toppings." @thefffeed/Instagram

But if your goal is to lose weight, she points out that there are ways to make your favorite foods lighter. A few little tweaks and you can still satisfy a craving (say, bagels) and save yourself a few hundred calories.

"Remember, you don’t have to cut anything out your diet that you enjoy. Just knowing quantities and simple swaps will make all the difference, like I did here." @thefffeed/Instagram

Speaking of calories, you might be surprised to know that milk chocolate is lower in calories than dark chocolate. But darker chocolate is thought to be "healthier" because it is more nutritious and contains less sugar. 

"Dark is often given the label as the ‘healthy’ version of chocolate. And although calories aren’t the sole indicator of ‘healthy’, we just presume it has lower calories." @thefffeed/Instagram

And just an extra pat of butter can add almost 100 calories. Again, if your goal is to lose weight, she says, you don't need to cut certain foods from your diet. Instead, maybe reconsider your portion sizes.

"When you're trying to get a little leaner you don't need to cut out foods you enjoy. Small tweaks to your portion control across an entire day can make a significant impact." @theFFFeed/Instagram

Mountain says she's not telling people to "'TRACK EVERYTHANG, TRACK THAT DAMN CUCUMBER’, it’s more about looking at your diet within the context of a whole day – and eating the damn salt and vinegar crisps if that’s what you actually want."?

"This is just another little reminder that often there’s not much difference between the product marketed as the ‘healthy alternative’ and the real thing. So go for the thing you actually WANT to eat." @thefffeed/Instagram

As she points out, no one type of food will make you gain weight. It's about making sure you're not eating any one food to excess or restricting the foods you like (which will only make you binge later).

[H/T: Business Insider]


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