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The Dirty Secrets of Your Favourite Foods

We've all got our guilty pleasures when it comes to food, but you may be surprised about some of the negative effects they can have on your body. Dr.Melissa Lem gives you a few more reasons to think before you eat.


Coffee: Auditory Hallucinations

Drinking coffee every now and then never hurt anyone, but overdoing it can actually make you hear things. Scientists suspect that high doses of caffeine block the parts of your brain that filter out unnecessary background noise. A study done in Australia asked volunteers to press a button every time they heard the tune "White Christmas" playing over a background of white noise. The trick was that they never played the song, and stressed-out people who drank more than five cups of coffee per day "heard" it triple the number of times.

Soda Pop: Erectile Dysfunction

Boston researchers gave men a sugary drink equivalent to about two cans of pop, and discovered that their testosterone levels plummeted by 25 per cent. The lower your testosterone, the lower your sex drive — which can cause trouble in the bedroom. Not only did 15 per cent of men with initially normal testosterone levels drop into the abnormally low range, but the effect lasted for up to two hours.

Steak: Worse Body Odour

A study from Prague had male university students eat a diet with red meat for two weeks, and a vegetarian diet for two weeks. Women then sniffed armpit sweat samples that were collected after each two-week diet. Samples from men on the meat diet were rated as significantly less pleasant, less attractive and more intense. Researchers think that digested animal fats that are then secreted through sweat glands are especially foul smelling when bacteria break them down.

Donuts and Pastries: Aggressive Behaviour

We all know trans fats are bad for our cardiovascular health, but they also make you angry! California scientists studied about 1,000 men and women, and found that those who ate the most trans fats were also the most aggressive, impatient and irritable. One theory explaining this is that trans fats block your body's production of omega-3 fatty acids, which tend to reduce aggression.

Ice Cream: Bad, Bad Breath

Ice cream is filled with proteins, fats and a type of sugar called lactose, which the millions of bacteria that live in your mouth especially love to dine on. When these bugs digest these nutrients, they release stinky sulfur-containing and acidic compounds. If you're lactose intolerant, the bacteria in your intestines also have a field day, which can result in even more smelly chemicals hitting your breath

Like most things it’s okay to enjoy these foods in moderation — but you might just want to think before you eat next time!


Video: The Dirty Secrets of Your Favourite Foods

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