7 Sneaky “Healthy” Foods that Make You Fat, Tired, and Sick

Wondering why that stubborn weight won’t budge and you’re ready to pass out by 2:00 pm every day—no matter what you do? It’s time to take a look at some of the worst “healthy” foods that could be secretly ruining your metabolism and making you fat, tired, and sick. 

Let me put it another way. 

Maybe you’re already doing everything right. You’re following what you thought was a healthy diet, journaling every day, crushing your workouts, AND staying consistent with your supplements. 

You’re literally killing it—yet your belly isn’t shrinking. 

And to make matters worse…

You might also be clawing your way through an endless cycle of energy crashes, mid-afternoon slumps, killer cravings, memory lapses, hormone issues, and maybe even dealing with the onset of chronic disease. 

If you’re wanting to understand the root cause behind these disruptive symptoms AND learn science-backed ways to lose stubborn weight, build strength, reclaim your energy, and transform your metabolism….

Join me LIVE this week in my free Masterclass, The Truth About Midlife Weight Gain & Metabolism.


It may come as a surprise to you, but there are countless hidden carbs, dangerous chemical toxins, hormone-disrupting oils, sneaky sugars, and other harmful ingredients lurking in just about every package at the grocery store.

Even the supposedly healthy ones!

In other words, we have been quietly getting bulldozed by the Big Food industry into eating garbage disguised as health food—and it’s wrecking our metabolism.

Not only that, but clever marketing people keep getting better at disguising their garbage with slogans like “Gluten-Free”, “Fat-Free”, “Paleo Diet”, “Keto-Friendly”, and so many others.   

These foods alone could be one of the biggest reasons why you’re having such a hard time losing weight, keeping your energy up, and staying healthy even if you do everything else right

Which is why today…

I’m going to reveal some of the sneakiest of these “healthy” foods AND give you some amazing metabolically-healthy alternatives that can be game-changers for both your metabolism AND other elusive issues like cravings, belly fat, hormonal imbalances, autoimmune flare-ups, and more. 

I’ll also show you how to EASILY spot the worst offenders while shopping.

But first, let’s take a look at how these foods actually wreck your metabolism. 


Sure, we all want a flatter tummy, zero bloating, and to be able to fit into our favorite jeans after 5:00 pm on a Friday night. I mean, that one sentence alone sounds like a dream come true. 

But beyond the obvious reasons we want it gone…

Belly fat could actually be a warning sign for something much more sinister—like blood sugar issues, metabolic dysfunction, or even a chronic disease like diabetes (which by the way are all intricately connected to your metabolism). 

It’s also a risk factor for even worse conditions—like heart disease, dementia, and stroke. 

I’m telling you this because when you’re constantly snacking on some of the sneaky healthy foods I’m about to share, it doesn’t just pack on the pounds. 

It causes your blood sugar to soar, hijacks your metabolism, and puts you in a state of low-grade system-wide inflammation. All. of which can lead to the exact weight-loss resistant belly fat, fatigue, and illness we’re trying to overcome! 

And the longer you continue to eat these supposedly healthy foods, the worse things get…

Want a few quick wins to help you flatten your tummy?

Take a look at my FREE Belly Slim-Down and Recipes Guide


What’s really unfortunate is that over 85% of all women already have some form of metabolic dysfunction and share this struggle with you for almost the exact same reason. 

And as many as 90% of women experience high glucose spikes on a daily basis—many of whom are like you and trying to eat a healthy diet. 

A 2018 Stanford study really broke ground on this topic when they discovered that non-diabetics experience diabetic-significant spikes of over 140 mg/dl from common foods like rice, grapes, and oatmeal.  

Who knew?

These mystery spikes and crashes are really the biggest culprits. 

Here’s why:

They create an inflammatory cascade in the body that literally forces insulin to become a fat-storage hormone. And the more often you eat these types of not-so-healthy foods, the higher you raise your fasting blood sugar levels.

The next thing you know, you’re insulin resistant and hence—even more fat gets stored. I explain this process in detail here

But that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

Because not only are you storing more fat with these foods,. You’re also exposing yourself to harmful chemicals, missing key blood sugar-balancing nutrients, and overloading on refined sugars. PLUS, you’re eating food that has basically been destroyed by through processing.

All of this of course affects your metabolism. 

And when your metabolism isn’t humming, it’s a LOT harder to lose weight, reclaim your energy, and strengthen your immune system.  

Keeping your blood sugar balanced is mission-critical. 

For more easy ways to balance your blood sugar and get your metabolism firing on all cylinders again, join me at my LIVE Metabolism Makeover Masterclass! 


Remember what I said about clever marketers disguising garbage?

Some of these sneaky “healthy” foods are just as heavily processed as a bowl of Lucky Charms. 

The other problem with ultra-processed food is that manufacturers greatly reduce the beneficial, health-promoting properties (like vitamins and fiber). Then they concentrate the more damaging parts of the food (like refined sugar). And ultimately, damage the structure of compounds in the food.

That’s all before they add in stabilizers, preservatives, and artificial synthetic chemicals to make their food more “palatable” and shelf-stable.

So if you’re ever thinking: “Oh, this is so addicting!” That’s because it was made to be that way.  

Processing can also turn certain macronutrients into disease-promoting compounds (like oxidized fats and refined carbs).

Long story short, some healthy foods—however well-intended—can absolutely destroy your metabolism. 

Let’s take a look at my top 7 worst offenders! 



This includes mustards, mayo, ketchups, bbq sauces—you name it

Just take a look at the ingredient list on many of these. They tend to contain a heap of added sugars, high sodium, inflammatory omega 6 seed oils and/or canola oil, and preservative chemicals. 

All of which have been linked to heart disease and can cause blood sugar spikes, damage your metabolism, and throw your hormones out of balance. 

Even just a tablespoon of any of these per meal can send you into a metabolic tailspin.

Be aware of brands like Kraft, Wishbone, Ken’s Steakhouse, and Olive Garden. 

Safe alternatives: 

Primal Kitchen is a bit pricier, but the juice is worth the squeeze because they use real ingredients, minimal or no sugar, and avocado oil. You could also DIY at home with your own ingredients and save a ton of money jarring them up for the week of use at home. 

Just be sure you’re using extra virgin olive oil or avocado oil. 


The lesson here? All fruits and veggies are NOT created equal.

Eating foods contaminated with heavy metals and pesticides can lead to a sluggish metabolism, tax your gut, and ultimately make you gain weight, feel fatigued, and even get sick. 

So if you’ve been eating a conventional salad every night for dinner, think again!

You might actually be worse off than if you were to eat a lightly-processed high-calorie alternative. 

A study in Obesity Review found that people with high levels of organochlorines, a type of pesticide, almost always have a slower metabolism and a harder time losing weight. 

Safe alternatives: 

Always opt for organic fruits and veggies, nuts, beans, and everything in between to ensure you’re not getting blindsided by toxins. At the very least, try to avoid the conventional dirty dozen whenever possible! 


Let me start by saying that I am a BIG yogurt fan! 

Greek yogurt in particular comes packed with a slew of metabolism-boosting benefits—thanks to its high protein content and naturally-occurring probiotics. 

But take one close look at some of these conventional yogurt labels and you will see why they made this list. 

For one, they have far less protein—which you need a lot of to keep your metabolism rocking. They’re also packed with added sugar (sometimes as much as 10-15 grams per serving!), preservatives, and inorganic fruit matter.

So while they may look appealing, be marketed as “Low-Fat” and “Heart Healthy”, and technically they’re still yogurt, these sneaky blood-sugar bombs must be avoided at all costs. 

Safe alternatives:

Always opt for good old-fashioned plain 2% Greek Yogurt and go organic whenever possible. If it’s a taste issue, Icelandic yogurt like Siggi’s makes a great high-protein, low-sugar option. 

Another lesser-known option to keep in mind is A2 yogurt, which is great if you have lactose sensitivity or other digestive issues. 

#4 — Crackers, chips, popcorn, and rice cakes of ANY kind. 

I’m not gonna lie, I used to be a popcorn junkie. 

It’s light, ridiculously easy, and pretty harmless, right? Wrong! 

Popcorn, like crackers, chips, and rice cakes, is another sneaky blood sugar bomb waiting to explode with even just a few handfuls. As tempting as these are while you’re on a “low-cal” diet, these are some of the worst offenders in terms of being highly processed refined carbs with zero nutritional value.

This includes brands that are touted as “Low sodium”, “Keto”, and “Gluten-Free”. None of that matters in the end. 

Safe alternatives: 

If you MUST have some type of chip on hand due to work or travel, look into Brad’s, Mary’s, or Hu—all brands that are making organic minimally-processed snacks made with whole food ingredients. 

These can be somewhat healthy and will not likely mess with your blood sugar OR your metabolism. 


Once the cornerstone of a healthy breakfast, no more! 

We now know just how bad oatmeal and granola can be for your blood sugar (and in turn, your metabolism). Especially the heavily processed “instant” or rolled varieties that break down more quickly in your body and include less fiber. 

On top of that, most brands sneak in tons of extra sugar and artificial flavors or sweeteners hoping we don’t notice. Keep an eye out for those!

Inorganic oats are also loaded with harmful toxins and have been found to have high concentrations of the known neuro-toxic weed-killer, Glyphosate. 

Safe alternatives: 

On the flip side, some organic steel cut oats are specifically Glyphosate AND sugar-free—which makes them a doable option. I also recommend mixing chia or pumpkin seeds, protein powder, and psyllium husks into your oats to offset any potential blood sugar spike.

Other companies are getting ahead of the curve and making paleo oats and granola, which do not contain grains, added sugar, or other refined carbs. 

Go for these!


This was one of the biggest surprises for me!

Avoid brands like CLIF bars, Luna, Kind, RX Bars, Quest,  and others. There wasn’t one protein bar I ate that didn’t mega-spike my blood sugar and that is the case for most people, especially when you eat them on their own.

Take a look at ANY of these labels and you will see a monster dose of carbs, sugar, chemicals, and artificial ingredients. Not to mention, they are heavily processed and smashed into a block that resembles space food from the 1960’s. 

Safe alternatives: 

BHU Keto bars are organic, minimally-processed and typically contain ZERO net carbs per bar and can be a great option. You could also opt for zero sugar grass-fed beef jerky (one of my favorites is PaleoValley).   

#7 – Acai Bowls and Smoothies 

This one is the trickiest because we have been led to believe that anything called a “bowl” or “smoothie” is automatically healthy. 

Acai berries are low in sugar (just 2g or 3g per 100g) and loaded with antioxidants. But they have a slightly bitter taste, so commercial bowls tend to mix in sweeter fruits like bananas or mangos, sweeteners like honey, or sweetened nut milks and granola, shooting the sugar through the roof. 

Blended bowls are even worse, reducing some of the fiber that can slow glucose absorption.

And don’t get me started on smoothies. 

By the time they add a banana, mango, and sweetened vanilla almond milk to your smoothie—you’re likely looking at over 20 grams of sugar.  

Safe alternatives: 

This is simply a game of being mindful when you grab a smoothie or bowl from a restaurant. Find out what’s really going in there and even ask them to omit the added granola, banana, or other sugary ingredients like honey. 

Also, the more fiber, the better as a rule of thumb—because it will help you absorb the glucose more slowly. 

TAP HERE for helpful tips on building metabolically-healthy meals!


They will all cause the same inflammatory response in the body I mentioned earlier that leads to a sluggish metabolism—and ultimately, makes you fat, tired, and sick.

Here’s why: 

  • Preservatives
  • Artificial flavors and fillers
  • Processed and added sugars
  • Heavy metals and pesticides (as found in conventional produce) 
  • Unhealthy & inflammatory seed oils
  • High fructose corn syrup
  • Sodium Benzoate
  • Potassium bromate
  • Caramel and other colorings
  • And more! 

What’s even more shocking is that more than 75% of the food in your local grocery store contains MANY of these harmful ingredients, or something similar… 


Knowledge is power and now that you have a pretty good idea of what to look out for, you’re already halfway there!

Follow these 4 steps to keep your shopping cart clean:

  • Become label savvy by learning to scour every label for fishy ingredients, added sugar, canola or vegetable oil, and chemicals that you cannot pronounce. 
  • Buy foods that have less than 5 ingredients by ensuring that over 80% of the food in your shopping cart includes real, whole, nutrient-dense food like organic veggies, nuts, beans, and sustainable meat and dairy, etc. 
  • Learn to spot a glucose spike on any nutritional label when buying packaged food. Here’s how to do that. 
  • Find a great shopping list you can model that focuses on nutrient-dense, metabolically-healthy foods! I’ll be sharing my list during my upcoming Metabolism Makeover Masterclass. 

TAP HERE for even more shopping tips. 


By making informed choices and prioritizing whole, nutrient-dense foods, you can take control of your health and pave the way for long-term vitality. 

Say goodbye to belly fat, cravings, fatigue, and disease—and hello to a healthier, happier you!

Get My Top Liver-Loving Recipes!

Filling your body with the right fuels has an incredible impact on your hormones and energy. Download my free guide to the best liver-supporting recipes by clicking the button below! Download Dr. Mariza’s Liver-Support Recipe


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