What Are Processed Foods?

Processed foods are any foods that have been altered from their natural state in some way. This can include a wide range of processes, from simple ones like washing and cutting to more complex ones like adding preservatives, flavors, and sugars.

Examples of processed foods include:

  • Frozen meals
  • Ready-to-eat snacks
  • Canned foods
  • Breakfast cereals
  • Packaged bread
  • Soda and other sugary drinks

Some processed foods are minimally processed, such as:

  • Cut vegetables
  • Frozen fruits
  • Canned beans
  • Roasted nuts

These foods are still nutritious and can be part of a healthy diet.

Other processed foods are more heavily processed and may contain unhealthy ingredients, such as:

  • High amounts of added sugar
  • Unhealthy fats
  • Salt
  • Artificial flavors and colors

These foods should be eaten in moderation.

How to Limit Processed Foods in Your Diet

  • Cook more meals at home.
  • Read food labels carefully and choose foods with fewer ingredients.
  • Choose whole foods over processed foods whenever possible.
  • Limit your intake of sugary drinks.

Eating a healthy diet is important for your overall health. By limiting your intake of processed foods, you can improve your health and reduce your risk of chronic diseases.