Spring cleaning: 15 things to throw away today

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Spring cleaning: 15 things to throw away today
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Spring cleaning: 15 things to throw away today

TOSS WHAT YOU DON'T USE

This should be an obvious one, but if you haven't even opened an item, definitely don't buy more. If you think you can use it, look around for a fun recipe. If not, toss it or donate it.

LEFTOVERS

Leftovers make for a great lunch, but they can only last so long. Toss ones that smell or look funny.

"LOW FAT" ITEMS

Make sure to check the nutritional label on "low fat" foods. In many instances, sugar replaces the fat.

PROCESSED FOODS

Super processed snacks are convenient, but not very healthy. There are a lot of recipes for snacks that don't come out of a box. Try making popcorn for a satisfying crunch.

CANDY

There's no need to keep unhealthy candy around as a sweet temptation. Swap sugary candies out for dark chocolate to satisfy any springtime cravings.

SODA

Soda is okay for a treat, but it's not necessary to enjoy at home every day. In addition to hurting your teeth, soda has actually been found to increase appetite (even the diet kinds).

WHITE BREAD

By now you've probably heard refined flour isn't the best for your health, so the white bread can go. Whole grain bread is a lot healthier and keeps you satisfied for longer.

MYSTERIOUS FROZEN FOOD

If you can't tell what it is anymore or don't even remember freezing it, toss it. Make room in the freezer for things you'll actually eat, and try out a marking system to identify how long different foods have been in the freezer.

FLAVORED WATERS AND SPORTS DRINKS

Unless you're a serious athlete or working out constantly, water is a perfectly acceptable post-workout drink. Sports drinks and flavored waters can have a deceptive amount of sugar in them, which can send you way over your recommended daily intake.

ARTIFICIAL SWEETENERS

Sure, they have fewer calories than regular sugar, but many artificial sweeteners are filled with chemicals, and since they're lower in calories, sometimes you end up wanting to eat more.

HERBS    

Sadly, herbs older than six months begin to lose their flavor. So if you've been storing that parsley for a while, it's probably best to let it go.

MARGARINE

Margarine can have high levels of trans fats, which experts believe raise cholesterol.

MOLDY PRODUCE

Unlike certain cheeses where you can cut off the moldy portion and continue eating, you should probably avoid eating produce with mold on it. Definitely throw out fruits and veggies that have started showing signs of mold.

DELI MEAT

Many studies have found that meat isn't always good for you. Deli meat is particularly unsavory because it often contains nitrates.

ENERGY BARS

While bars can be great quick snacks, it's generally better to stick to real food. Like other processed foods, energy bars can contain a lot of hidden sugars and fat.

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Springtime brings sunshine, flowers, warmer nights and ... cleaning. While it may not be the most fun part of spring, it's a necessary and refreshing mark of the changing seasons. Tossing infrequently used items is one way to easily tidy up your pantry and offers the opportunity to reclaim a healthy lifestyle.

Check out the slideshow above to learn which items you may want to consider tossing during spring cleaning.


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