Today is “Eat What You Want Day”, so it’s time to ditch that diet and down those donuts. But if the guilt of eating “bad foods” is too much for you to bear, here at Fed Up & Drunk, we’ve compiled a list of so-called “bad foods” for you that, as it turns out, are actually not that bad, so you can be bad without having to feel too guilty.

Butter

The nation’s favourite spread, there’s nothing better than a chunky bit of baguette bathed in butter. Although many believe butter is bad for you due to its high saturated fat content, the fat in butter is not linked to heart disease. In fact, real butter – especially the grass-fed variety – is a brilliant source of fatty acids that can in fact aid in weight loss.

Nuts

There ain’t nutting better than a big bag of salted peanuts or crunchy peanut butter on your bagels when you want to binge. High in saturated fats, nuts have long been thought to have been linked to an increased risk of heart disease, however, not to fear.  Nuts are also full of nutrients, from omega-3 and magnesium, calcium, and iron, to heart-healthy fibre.

Bacon

If prepared correctly, bacon can form part of a healthy and balanced diet. Despite claims by the World Health Organization that bacon can cause cancer, the reasons behind this shouldn’t completely rule out a diet high in this food. Often preserved with sodium nitrites, these can react to the heat caused by grilling and frying to create chemicals that can cause cancer. These days, however, a lot of bacon is cured without sodium nitrites.

Potatoes

Despite being full of carbs, potatoes are also known for being very filling, which means they keep you fuller for longer and can prevent over-eating. For this reason, they are actually a very good diet food, especially when used in a potato salad. Cooling potatoes in the fridge causes the starch in the potatoes to take longer to break down in your intestine. Potatoes are also a very good source of fibre, vitamin C, and potassium.

Red Wine

In moderation, red wine is an excellent source of antioxidants. In fact, a healthy antioxidant found in red wine called resveratrol can even counteract some negative effects that are associated with not exercising enough. Plus wine is made from grapes so – it must be good for you – right?

Chocolate

Chocoholics rejoice. Just because chocolate tastes so damn delicious, doesn’t mean it’s so bad for your health. Dark chocolate especially is chockfull of stress-reducing and fat-burning benefits. Then again, try to avoid the highly processed stuff. If you consume dark chocolate with a high percentage of cocoa solids, you shouldn’t have to feel too guilty at all. The more cocoa, the more healthy monounsaturated fats and anti-inflammatory flavanols. These components link chocolate to lowering the risk of strokes and heart failure.

Pasta

Though pasta may be high in carbs, a Mediterranean diet is one of the healthiest diets around and is associated with a lower risk of conditions such as cognitive decline and heart disease. Big pasta eaters on average also tend to have smaller waistlines and lower BMIs. As long as you avoid cream-based sauces (if you’re on a diet that is) and stick to vegetable-based sauces, you shouldn’t have to worry.

Coffee

Coffee is a great source of flavonoids that have been proven to help heart health and even have anti-aging benefits.  It may also help reduce the risk of getting a range of conditions including Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s, and type 2 diabetes. As long as you’re not drinking more than four cups of coffee a day, there should be very little risk to your health – unless of course you take your coffee with three teaspoons of sugar.

Beer

Beer has a bad rep and is often associated with big bellies, but this beverage not only has no fat, nitrates, or cholesterol, but is full of magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, iron, calcium, selenium, B-vitamins, and antioxidants. In fact, if drinking beer in moderation, it can also help reduce the risk of strokes and heart disease.

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