Do not panic. What is toxic is the green shell of raw cashews, not the dried fruit that we buy already peeled and roasted, which we can take without any risk. To avoid toxicity, the industry subjects the peel to high temperatures to be able to extract the fruit without risks. Through this process, any trace of urushiol is safely removed, a toxic substance whose consumption can cause a series of symptoms that range from skin irritation and inflammation to very severe dermatitis.
It will sound familiar to many because it was used as punishment in the Zipi and Zape comics, and although the oil is not toxic in itself, its seed is. Formerly it was used as a moisturizer and laxative, and today it is fashionable among celebrities for its supposed beneficial properties for skin and hair. Its excessive consumption can lead to disorders such as diarrhea, colic or vomiting, which can lead to severe dehydration if the symptoms are not counteracted quickly.
It is not as common as potatoes, but it can also poison us if we consume it raw. This is because it contains so-called cyanogenic glycosides, which are part of the family of natural toxins of plant origin called cyanogens. Raw cassava is not only very indigestible, but these cyanogenic glycosides, when decomposed, generate cyanide, which can be fatal. We must also consider that it is a toxic that accumulates, so it is advisable to avoid its consumption and make sure that we always eat the cassava properly cooked.
Carbonated water, flavorings, and sweeteners are the 3 main ingredients in every soda drink. A lot of other ingredients are also added, which naturally makes these drinks a lot more attractive and tasty than water. But because of all of these ingredients, it’s one of the deadliest products to consume. Why? Your brain will never be satisfied with soda, so you will keep consuming calories, without ever feeling ‘full’. A large amount of unnecessary sugars, such as fructose, is turned into glucose by your liver, and once you have created enough glucose and there is still sugar left, your body will store this as fat. This will make you gain weight, and increase the risk of obesity. So try to start drinking less soda starting today.
Margarine is on this list because of the high percentage of trans fat (unsaturated fat) in the product. Trans fat is often linked to cardiovascular disorders, like abnormal heart rhythms, arrhythmias, heart attacks or even heart failure. These fats can also have a negative effect on mother’s milk: trans fats decrease the quality of the milk you give to your newborn baby. Furthermore, it increases your insulin levels. So don’t eat too much margarine, and maybe even try to replace it with other products, such as olive or sunflower oil.
You might be thinking: bread is just bread and there is no difference, but you would be wrong because there is definitely a difference between dark and light bread. White bread contains a lot less fiber and protein than wholemeal or even darker bread. Fiber helps our body understand when it has had enough to eat. A sense of fullness is important if you don’t want to consume too many calories during the day. If you eat too much sugar, you may get too much insulin in your body, and it will have to counter this with hormones that you are not supposed to have in your body all day.
Oh, how I love a “fresh” orange juice in the morning, and it’s totally healthy too! Right? Well, even if the label says that it’s 100% fruit juice, fruit juices are not as healthy as they would have you believe. After squeezing the fruit, most food and drinks manufacturers store the juice in enormous oxygen tanks, until they’re ready to package it and distribute it to the supermarket. Because of this process, the juice will be virtually tasteless, so the manufacturers have to add flavorings to get the delicious fruit taste back. In case you can’t live out your fruit juices: buy a slow juicer or citrus press and make your own juices!