The Hidden Costs of "Free" Food
The trouble with free stuff, as you know, is that it always ends up costing you something. And in many cases, it might be your health. That's true whether food is free of charge or allegedly free of certain ingredients. Outsmart both come-ons:
Get one free!
The cost: extra calories. What gets your brain and your bank account excited ("free of charge is good!") can make your waistline and your arteries, kidneys, and nearly every other organ shudder ("We don't know where we're going to put it, either, but get ready for another shipment, guys!"). Let's face it: It's easy to eat too much of food you don't pay for. The $3 you "save" on free ice cream day (that you wouldnt have spent anyway) might make you think youve put a few more bucks in your vacation fund, but will it take away the stamina to walk the Great Wall when you get there?
The cost: more fat than you think. Fat-free label laws allow things that contain 0.5 grams of fat per serving to be labeled "0 grams of fat." That's how cooking sprays that are 100% fat can get away with listing 0 fat grams on the label. Half a gram doesn't seem like a lot until you start adding up how often you eat more than a serving of "fat-free" foods. Plus, other research has found that when you think a food is low in fat, you're likely to eat more of it. And most of that fat-free stuff has a lot of sugar.
Actively patrolling your health can make your RealAge as much as 7 years younger. Take the RealAge Test!