Eating healthy can be harder than we think, especially when words such as “low fat,” “high fiber,” “multigrain” and “natural” can fool even the most sophisticated customers into believing what they’re buying is healthful. So let’s take a quick look at some foods that are thought to be healthy, but really may not be as healthy as we think!
- Pre-made or store-bought smoothies are jam-packed with added sugars! Consider making your own smoothie at home.
- Energy, fiber, and protein bars do not substitute as meals and have added sugars, artificial ingredients, high fructose corn syrup, and saturated fats. Putting together your own quick snack bar is often much healthier. You can use trail mix, nuts, and fruits.
- Store-bought muffins have too many processed sugars and fats, unnecessary calories, harmful preservatives, and excess sodium. They are also sold in huge quantities. Next time you see bran muffins at the store, remember “bigger isn’t always better.”
- Frozen yogurt– Ice cream vs. froyo- which one is healthier? Froyo is healthier when eaten plain or with fresh fruit, but once all those sugary toppings are added, it is relatively equal to ice cream in calories, sugars, and fats.
- Fat-free foods have added calories and artificial flavoring. Remember, fat-free does not = calorie-free!
- Granola cereal– Many of today’s granola cereals are loaded with sugar and calories, while having less fiber. Make sure the granola you buy has fewer calories and sugar. Use fruits or honey for sweetness rather than sugar to reduce sugar intake. Since granola contains plenty of calories, it should be eaten in small portions. An even better idea is to add granola to other foods, like yogurt.
So what can we do? Make sure to read the Nutrition Facts panel on food products as well as the ingredients list!
Let’s try not to take shortcuts to eating healthy.