It’s hard to keep up with the latest “health food” trends, one minute Kombucha is good for your gut then it’s bad for your teeth. Salmon keeps your joints and brain healthy but can cause high blood pressure. The secret, like with most things, lies in the balance. We asked top nutritionist, Jenna Hope, to round up five healthy foods that we shouldn’t overdo…
Kombucha is hugely beneficial in gut health due to the fermentation process. Recently gut health has been shown to play key roles in: weight gain, brain function, sleep and hormones. However, we shouldn’t over do Kombucha because it contains sugar and whilst it’s fine in small amounts too much can contribute to sugar cravings, weight gain and energy spikes.
2. Coconut oil
Coconut oil is one of those taboo foods, with claims changing by the week it’s no wonder we are all confused about it. However, whilst coconut oil may be beneficial for cooking as it can endure higher temperatures. Raw coconut oil also has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. It is high in saturated fats. The key saturated fat in coconut oil is Lauric acid which helps to increase good cholesterol and lower the bad cholesterol. However, we shouldn’t over do coconut oil as its hugely energy dense and so consuming it by the spoon isn’t recommended.
Tuna is a great source of protein and omega-3 fatty acids which are essential for brain function. Although, it shouldn’t be consumed in excess as its also high in Mercury. Tuna does contain selenium which helps to bind to the mercury and prevent the absorption of mercury. However, these levels depend on where the fish is from and fish with a low selenium content often contains more mercury. Therefore consuming tuna in excess is a risk factor of mercury toxicity. I recommend to consume it no more than three times a week.
4. Smoked salmon
Smoked salmon is a really great source of protein and omega-3. Omega-3 is essential for joint health and brain function and reducing the risks of neurodegenerative diseases. However, it is not recommended to consume more than 2 portions a week as it is high in salt. Too much salt can contribute to hypertension. Salmon also contains small amounts of mercury but in excess this can be a risk factor for toxicity.
Eggs are one of those foods which I’m forever being asked about. They’re a good source of protein, healthy fats and vitamin D (which is very tricky to get from the diet). There has been a debate for years about whether eggs raise cholesterol. Current research suggests that they raise HDL (good cholesterol) and therefore we shouldn’t worry about this too much. However, like most foods we shouldn’t consume in excess. I recommend no more than two eggs a day and try and have two days a week egg free.