Are Hot Pockets Healthy?

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Lauren Zembron
Lauren Zembronhttps://www.healthyfoodforliving.com/
I am a 34 year old living outside of Boston with my wonderful husband, energetic daughter, sweet son, and playful dog. I have degrees in both psychology and guidance counseling, and have worked in a variety of school settings. I strive to find a balance between the two basic food philosophies of “eat to live” and “live to eat“. I believe that food should be (and is!) one of the great pleasures of leading a healthy lifestyle.
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If you’re a 90s kid, then you’re surely familiar with hot pockets, and you’re also aware of the ongoing debate – are hot pockets healthy? While fans will argue that hot pockets are a healthier version of calzones or that some are designed to be healthy, there are some things you ought to be aware of.

Our team has conducted thorough research over a couple of weeks to learn everything there is to learn about hot pockets. If you want to learn the truth about these treats, then continue ahead.

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What Are Hot Pockets?

Hot Pockets is a popular brand formed by Chef America Inc. back in 1983. However, since 2002, Nestle has been producing them. Hot Pockets are a microwaveable turnover made with cheese, protein and or vegetables. 

There are currently 50 different types of Hot Pockets that are made for the three segments – breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Each individual pack contains around 350 calories.

Are Hot Pockets Healthy?

Are Hot Pockets Healthy

The first thing we noticed is that the list of ingredients used to make these snacks covers a complete side of the box. Some of the ingredients used are named in a manner that’s extremely hard to be depicted by an average person.

They’re created using sugar and saturated fats while also containing a bunch of modified substances, preservatives, and additives. For example – sodium nitrate, sodium phosphate, soy lecithin, and carrageenan. It also uses an unknown dye which is likely to be harmful to the body – especially to kids! 

You may think that the items mentioned above are safe to consume, however, it’s not safe to have more than a small amount and that too regularly.  

Sodium nitrates can turn into nitrosamines under some circumstances that have been associated with heart diseases and degenerative neurological disorders.

While it’s fine to consume sodium phosphate in moderate amounts, it should not be consumed regularly. Too much consumption of this chemical leads to a high risk of kidney disease and osteoporosis. This is because it can create an imbalance in your body’s phosphorus and calcium level.

Generally speaking, soy is harmful to your health when consumed in large amounts. This is due to the fact that it holds the ability to mimic estrogen in your body. Lecithin is created by extracting soy using hexane. Apart from triggering or worsening allergy issues, it can trigger other diseases such as cholesterol.

As for carrageenan, it’s essentially a substance extracted from seaweed that is used to make food thick. Generally, you’re not supposed to intake this as it can’t be absorbed by the body. Moreover, it can trigger gut inflammation, bleeding, ulcer, and even GI cancer.

Finally, the crisping sleeve included in this dish that gives it its crispiness often includes flakes of aluminum. Intaking aluminum leads to brain disorders like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s. It also surges estrogen-like effects as well as gene expression, which leads up to cancer.

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Possible Side Effects from Consuming Hot Pockets

The following are the possible side effects one is likely to suffer from if they eat hot pockets, especially on a regular basis.

Short-Term:

  • Inflammation
  • Gastrointestinal Issues
  • Allergic Reaction
  • Ulcer
  • Diarrhea

Long-Term:

  • Heart Disease
  • Kidney Disease
  • Osteoporosis
  • Degenerative Brain Disorders
  • Cancer

Things to Know About Hot Pockets

are hot pockets good for you

Here are some of the other key information that you should be aware of:

Features Artificial Vegetable Protein:

Texture vegetable protein basically refers to meat replacement or extender. It’s a protein based on soy which gives it the taste and looks of ground beef. 

Contain Artificial Cheese:

While the brand promises that it has been prepared with “real cheese” – it, however, doesn’t use real use for most of their product range. Similar to the textured vegetable protein, they use artificial cheese made with non-milk-based substitutes such as vegetable fats. 

Contain Cheese Created with Sodium Citrate:

Sodium citrate is a type of salt mixture that is used to replace some of the calcium. This helps to bind cheese together so it can melt without separating. Sodium citrate consumption results in weakness, restlessness, diarrhea, muscle twitching or cramps, weight gain or swelling, mood changes, or even seizure. 

Includes Lactic Acid:

You don’t normally use lactic acid when cooking. This is because it causes your muscles to exhaust themselves. Lactic acid is something that’s normally used for fermentation. It’s basically a type of bacteria that helps to eliminate “bad” bacteria that helps to keep food safe. Thus, it’s unclear why it’s used to make Hot Pockets.

Made with Palm Oil:

Palm oil contains a high level of saturated fat as well as trans-fat. While a moderate amount of palm oil isn’t that harmful, it should not be consumed frequently. 

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Are Hot Pockets better in the oven or microwave?

No doubt, oven. It will take a bit longer than a microwave, but the crispiness will be far better.

Is a Hot Pocket a snack?

Yes, it is a frozen snack.

What goes well with Hot Pockets?

Salad, Humus, and veggies go well with hot pockets. 

Final Words

Are hot pockets healthy? The simple answer is no, they’re not healthy. This dish is made with too many known and unknown chemicals . Not only do they cause serious issues like obesity, muscle fatigue, but can also result in stroke, heart attacks, and cancer. 

As a result, even if they’re easy to make, we will suggest you look for other alternatives – best if you can make your own food.

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