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5 Unhealthy snacks and treats that are secretly healthy for you

Hey, everyone: welcome to Day 40 of 2018. With Valentine's Day round the corner and your fateful New Year's Eve party a distant thing of the past, if you've managed to keep up your New Year's Resolution so far, then it's getting to the stage where's that's almost something impressive.

For a lot of you, the end of the calendar year probably involved a resolution to lose weight and eat healthier over the next 12 months, and if you've pulled it off, you probably got rid of some (if not all) items on this list. But these items are actually a lot better for your health than you thought.

1. Whiskey

The quintessential drink for the middle-aged grump in all of us, whiskey hasn't exactly got a healthy rep when it comes to alcoholic beverages. It's been linked with liver diseases and cancer in the past; plus, you can't tell me that whatever's going on with Alec Baldwin's head is natural, or good. But Jessica Cording, registered dietician, drinks four glasses of the stuff a day, and says that "you should tune in to what you're satisfied with". When consumed in moderation, whiskey can improve your cholesterol, and thanks to an anti-oxidant called ellagic acid, whisky can actually decrease your risk of heart disease or cancer.

2. Chocolate

I probably don't need to tell you that a chocolate-themed diet probably isn't the best thing if you want to live forever. But science says that the right kind of sugary cacao bean curd could do a wonder for your health. Unsurprisingly, we're talking mostly about dark chocolate, and Cording says that she eats a square of dark chocolate a day, presumably to keep the doctor away. "We categorize it with candy," Cording explains, but a study published in the  2015 issue of The BMJ found people who ate a small chocolate bar a day had an 11 percent lower risk of developing cardiovascular disease, plus drastically reduced chances of stroke.

3. Donuts

Yes. Those donuts. As in, dough deep fried in oil. As a result, they're quite delicious, but if your nutritionist recommends you chow down on donuts as part of your weight loss diet... you should probably fire that nutritionist. But Jessica Cording says that you can afford to have donuts as a treat once in a while, and if you do... it might actually benefit your diet in the long run. "The pleasure aspect is important for long-term wellness. If you're miserable on a healthy diet it's hard to sustain," Cording reveals.

4. Beer

Made with barley and hops while best enjoyed several cans at once, beer isn't exactly associated with peak physical condition. It's called a beer belly for a reason, and Ed Sheeran attested to as much when he revealed his weight loss was down to giving up Budweiser or Coors. But Ed Sheeran hasn't got it entirely right; a study published in the Scientific Reports journal showed that beer could lower blood pressure, prevent Type 2 diabetes, not to mention help with weight loss. I'm sorry, Ed. Maybe you should stick to making music and appearing randomly in Game of Thrones.

5. Steak and other red meat

Yes, we know about red meat, and its numerous links to cancer, Alzheimer's disease and cardiovascular disease. We've even talked about it on this website. But in addition to all we've talked about, there are still some pretty decent reasons to have a steak once in a while. While all of that's true, red meat is also rich in iron, zinc, protein, and Vitamin B12. They all help to keep your nerve and red blood cells healthy, improving your circulation, and boosting your sex drive.

So there you go, guys. I'm not here to tell you that everything you know about food is wrong, but there are definitely some preconceived ideas that you're probably better off without moving forward. With a little bit of discipline and a lot of moderation, maybe you too can live to be 104 years old.