Previously I had suggested several foods to be included in healthy diets. In this communication, I list an all-star cast of some foods that should be strenuously avoided. Representing merely examples, these instances are blatant violators and constitute only the “tip of the iceberg” of nefarious foods. And we wonder why we have such an epidemic of obesity, heart attacks, and high blood pressure here and in so many other parts of the world!

1) Chicken Pot Pie.  As an example, Marie Callender’s pie, while presumably tasty, contains 22 grams of saturated fat, 1,600 mg of sodium, and possesses “only” 1,040 calories. I suspect that most such pies will be equally dangerous. Check them out first, or stay away entirely!

2) Parkay Margarine sticks. They may be cholesterol-free, but each tablespoon of the spread has 1 1/2 grams of undesirable trans-fat and an equal amount of equally undesirable saturated fat. Other similar products are just as deadly, i.e., Blue Bonnet, Land O’Lakes, Country Crock, and Fleischmann’s. Instead of these stick margarines, look for tub margarines instead, for most have little or no trans-fat.

3) Canned Soups: As an example, an average cup of Campbell’s regular Condensed Soup contains up to 1,900 mg of sodium in a single can (supposedly two servings, but many will opt for the whole can)—more than most adults should consume in an entire day! For best results, look for Campbell’s Health Choice soups containing around 400 mg of sodium (which is still a bit too much). Other standard brands also contain loads of salt. To minimize these amounts, I suggest reduced-sodium soups by Amy’s, Imagine Foods, Pacific Natural Foods, Dr. McDougall’s light sodium, and Tabatchnick.

 4) Tortillas: For instance, Chipoltle Chicken Burrito (tortilla, rice, pinto beans, cheese, chicken, sour cream and salsa) contains 970 calories, 18 grams of saturated fat, and 2,200 mg of sodium. Skipping the cheese and sour cream cuts the saturated fat to 6 grams, but the remaining bulk contains more than a day’s worth of sodium! Not my recommendation!

 5) Desserts with a Vengeance: How about Cheesecake Factory’s Chocolate Tower Truffle Cake for a winner! This slab of cake weighs 3/4 lb, containing 1,760 calories with 50 grams of saturated fat, which. I would call a deadly dish!

 6) Biscuits that are far from healthy: Try Pillsbury Grands! Each one of these southern style frozen biscuits has 170 calories and 1 1/2 grams of trans fat. While other companies are dumping their partially hydrogenated oils (trans fats), Pillsbury still makes most of its rolls and biscuits with this nasty stuff!

 7) Not so Mediterranean: This dish has a misleading name, don’t go near Oliver Garden’s “Tour of Italy”, which consists of homemade lasagna, lightly breaded chicken Parmigiana, and creamy fettuccine alfredo. It contains 1,450 calories, 33 grams of saturated fat, and 3,830 milligrams of sodium. If you add a breadstick (150 calories and 400 mg of sodium) with a garden salad with dressing (290 calories and 1,530 mg of sodium), you’ll be well on your way to needing heart bypass surgery! Although I am capable of treating heart disease, I much prefer preventing it!

 8) Starbucks gets into the act: The Starbucks Venti (20oz) White Chocolate Mocha with 2% milk and whipped cream is more than a simple cup of coffee. It possesses 580 calories, 14 grams of saturated fat, and 13 teaspoons of added sugar. You can, however, minimize the damage by 130 calories and cut the saturated fat in half if you order it with nonfat milk and no whipped cream.

 9) Ice cream is no bargain: An average half cup serving of plain vanilla Haagen-Dazs ice cream contains about 250 calories, but, unfortunately, 10 grams of undesirable saturated fat. And that’s only if you don’t add any toppings or whipped cream. Of all the threatening foods on this page, this may be the lesser of the evils!

 10) A loaded milk shake: Cold Stone Creamery’s “Oh Fudge” shake contains chocolate ice cream, milk, and fudge syrup, starting at 1,060 calories for the small “Like It” (16 oz) size. It becomes progressively worse with the medium “Love it” (20 oz), with 1,360 calories, and the large “Gotta Have It” (24 oz), with 1,600 calories and 62 grams of saturated fat. That’s the saturated fat content of two 16-oz ribeye steaks plus a buttered baked potato! I suppose if you’re running marathons every few days, you could handle this much caloric load, provided you don’t drop dead in the process!

     Hopefully I haven’t spoiled your entire day by advising against such yummy foods. But even if your day is less fun, your future has a chance to be much more secure and probably substantially longer!