You always choose low-fat or fat-free salad dressing
They may be healthier on their own, but a 2012 Purdue University study shows that the lack of fat might make it more difficult for you to absorb your salad’s nutrients, making you lose some of the disease-fighting properties that the vegetables offer. Carotenoids, which are linked to combating cancer, heart disease, and vision loss, are more readily absorbed from veggies when paired with fat-based dressings. So while you’ll save on calories, slashing the veggies’ benefits isn’t worth it. What should you eat instead? The study found that monounsaturated fat-based dressings—those with avocado, olive oil, and canola oil—were most effective in nutrient absorption and limiting fat intake.
You slather on the sunscreen
You should apply sunscreen daily, and make sure you put on enough and as often as needed. But you need to read the ingredients. Certain consumer health groups suggest looking for octinoxate, a commonly used chemical compound in sunscreens and skincare products, which has been ranked by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) as a moderately high health hazard. If you have concerns about chemicals and sunscreen, many dermatologists recommend choosing products that physically block harmful rays, such as those containing zinc oxide or titanium dioxide, which are not absorbed into your skin.
You buy “all natural” groceries
Many so-called “all natural” or “100 percent natural” foods are actually heavily processed with ingredients like high fructose corn syrup, sodium benzoate, and genetically modified plants, according to the Wall Street Journal, because the USDA and the FDA do not share a definition of those terms (along with other marketing words like “free range” or “cage free”). Yet in a 2011 survey, 25 percent of over 1,000 consumers thought the best description to read on a food label was “100 percent natural” or “all natural.” Here are 13 more “healthy” food habits that really aren’t good for you.