With summer fast approaching, most people are taking desperate calls to get the beach-body in no time. Even without the rush for that, it is no secret that one of the first rules of going on a diet is to cut down on almost every treat dear to us.
Yet sometimes these diets don't work and we are also left feeling miserable. This is explained by experts saying that depriving oneself of the joy of one's favourite foods can never work towards the best physical and mental health.
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Luckily, experts have now shared a list of treats that you can still continue to eat without that guilty feeling as they are actually healthy for the body. Speaking to Daily Mail Online, two nutritionists enlisted all the 'bad' food which actually enhance diet and improve health.
It might seem like you're signing up for an assured chance of liver diseases and cancer, but studies have shown that whiskey does have certain health benefits too, if consumed in moderation.
Jessica Cording, a registered dietitian at Jessica Cording Nutrition, told Daily Mail Online, "You should tune in to what you're satisfied with. When it comes to a favourite [drink, like whiskey], allowing yourself to enjoy it on occasion helps you avoid feeling deprived, which is key to sticking with an overall healthy eating approach."
Also, the School of Public Health at Harvard University found that moderate amounts of alcohol can raise good cholesterol levels in the body. This is associated with putting the body at lower risks of heart disease.
2. Dark chocolate
Apart from being one of the most popular 'guilty pleasure' and 'craving', chocolate also happens to be full of antioxidants, including cancer-fighting ones like flavanols.
Coring, who eats a square of chocolate every day, also mentioned that we consider chocolate to be so evil because we are 'conditioned to think anything delicious is bad for you.'
But a research published in a 2015 issue of The BMJ revealed that people consuming one mg of chocolate per day had 11 percent lower risk of developing cardiovascular disease, and a 23 reduced risk of stroke. Cording also mentioned that chocolate's magnesium content helps increase energy and help prevent migraines.
Beth Cecil, a dietitian at Owensboro Health claims, "[...] over time [dietary] restrictions can lead to cravings, binges and overeating completely sabotaging your attempts to improve nutrition and weight."
This means that a doughnut once in a while is not all that bad. "The pleasure aspect is important for long-term wellness," added Cording. "If you're miserable on a healthy diet it's hard to sustain.'
It's important to enjoy food and feel well."
Cutting down on beer is mostly done to avoid getting a 'beer belly.' But a recent study published in Scientific Reports revealed beer's ability to lower blood pressure, prevent diabetes and even help with weight loss.
Plus, the Harvard School of Public Health found that drinking beer in moderation can also cut the risk of heart disease by 30 to 35 percent
5. Sweet potatoes
Cording, who admitted to eating sweet potatoes several times a week, said it's best to consume them roasted or baked.
Rich in vitamin A and C, it helps boost the immune system. Also, a 2016 study published in the Nutrition and Cancer Journal suggests that these antioxidants in the potatoes skin can reduce risks of developing breast, colon and ovarian cancers.
Red meat has been linked to weight gain, colon cancer risks and even Alzheimer's and other cardiovascular diseases.
But a little-known fact is its iron, zinc, protein, and Vitamin B12 content, which keeps nerve and the red blood cells healthy. A 2015 study published in the Journal of Nutrition even found that 75 grams of steak benefit the heart, the same way giving up smoking does.