Not all healthy foods are safe to binge eat

By Ea Francisco | Lead photo by Jeremy Bishop/Unsplash

The term ‘superfoods’ seems to be thrown around a lot and while it’s totally justified, people seem to be under the impression that it has no limits. Healthy eating would’ve been so much easier if we could only eat just a handful of things but sadly, even these healthy foods need to be taken in moderation.

Bananas

Bananas are one of the most recommended workout snacks. They’re especially known for containing high amounts of potassium, but it’s this very trait that makes bananas harmful when consumed too much. Potassium is an electrolyte that helps maintain blood pressure as well as transmit pulses for nerve and muscle function. Too much potassium, however, is deadly; so much so that it’s one of the substances used for lethal injections. When you have too much potassium in your blood stream, it’ll cause cardiac arrest and kidney failure. Luckily, it’s physically impossible for you to eat enough bananas to reach this because that would mean eating around 400 bananas a day. And that’s obviously not happening any time soon. Though, it does have over 100 calories a piece and like all things, too much of it can cause weight gain.

Avocados

Even though this fruit is one of the best superfoods around, you can’t just live off avocado toast for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. You should only have half an avocado at most. It has roughly 22 grams of healthy fats a piece, but it also contains around 250 calories. The fact is that eating more than one whole avocado a day is way too much fat for one person, even if you’re relatively active. You only really need an average of 58 grams of fat a day. Of course, the number depends on how active you are, but it’s not like avocados are the only thing you eat in a day. And if it is, stop it. Fat should only consist of 35 percent of your calories.

Walnuts

Like with all nuts, one big issue with overeating walnuts is allergies. It’ll vary for every person but if you start getting itchy and red, then it might be a sign that you should limit your walnuts. Walnuts are also high in fiber, which is generally good for your digestion but if you’re not used to eating fiber or when you eat too much, it’ll have a negative effect. It can give you gas and diarrhea or make you feel bloated. The recommended amount is seven to nine walnuts a day.

Quinoa

As one of the most popular diet food out there, quinoa’s made a name for being a gluten-free, high-protein rice alternative. Unfortunately, it suffers the same problem as walnuts with their high fiber content. Quinoa also has a natural coating called saponins that naturally repel insects but can cause irritation. Saponin is found in a lot of vegetables and generally has benefits when taken in small amounts, but the one found in quinoa can damage the small intestines. The best way to avoid this is to wash them thoroughly beforehand and to consume in reasonable amounts, which is at most one cup per meal.

Agave

Out of all the different kinds of sugar, agave is the most popular among dieters. It’s categorized under the ‘healthy’ sugars but, it is still sugar. Despite being a natural sweetener, it should still be taken in moderation because it contains an alarmingly high amount of fructose. Fructose triggers the release of triglycerides, which signals your body to store more visceral fat. High amounts will cause inflammation, similar to when you drink too much alcohol. This causes liver scarring and other diseases that cause liver degeneration.