When shopping for “healthy” food knowing how to pick the “right” stuff is important. Be sure to READ the nutrition label. Find out how these 9 Healthy Foods can FOOL you and the SOLUTION to each.
I love yogurt, because with the high calcium and protein it is one of the few diary items I can consume due to the probiotics! 😀 Straight yogurt has a nature “bitter” taste which is why manufacturers such as Dannon, Yoplait, and others load them with flavors! This is what adds a lot of SUGAR to your intake for a single serving there are 27g of sugar. That is like drinking a soda almost.
SOLUTION: I opt for Greek yogurt with less preservatives and additives or I pick a PLAIN yogurt and flavor it myself. Try adding your berries or even a tablespoon of HONEY. *Note: if you buy a LOCAL honey and consume it daily (1 tablespoon) it can help with local allergens.
2. Wheat Bread
WHOLE-GRAIN WHEAT is better than any refined wheat. Whole-grain wheat still contains bran and germ which keeps it’s natural nutrients and is loaded with FIBER.
SOLUTION: So when reading labels, or buying flour (even “wheat flour”) make sure this key word “WHOLE” is present. Just because is says “wheat” doesn’t necessarily mean it isn’t refined.
Three ounces of raw chicken breast, meat only: 93 calories, 19.5 grams of protein, and 1.2 grams of fat. Three ounces of dark meat (wings, thighs, and legs), meat only:105 calories, 18 grams of protein, and 3.6 grams of fat. Doesn’t seem like a lot, but it can add up.
SOLUTION: Mix and match your dinner entrees with pork, fish, and other “white” type meats. When eating chicken go for the breast and ditch the skin. (I know the skin can be fantastic, even on a turkey on thanksgiving day)
4. Frozen or Canned Fruit
Any fruit/food soaked in juice or syrup is not healthy. Usually, when fruit is canned the fruit is peeled and stripped of its nutrients such as fiber. With frozen fruit, some manufacturers will add sugar to help preserve it.
SOLUTION: Once again, read the ingredients-make sure it says FRUIT & WATER! Other alternative is to bulk buy FRESH fruit and store in an airtight freezer bag.
5. Canned Veggies
Canned veggies contain a lot of sodium to preserve them for long periods of time (~300-400mg per CAN).
SOLUTION: Find products that have “no salt added” or go frozen instead. Better option is to buy what is FRESH in season.
6. Peanut Butter
A lot of companies make peanut butter that contains sugar or high-fructose corn syrup to make it taste better and easier to spread. Be careful with ingredients and make sure it is “real” PB
SOLUTION: Read the label. Real peanut butter has very FEW ingredients. I recently have switched to almond butter, it is harder to spread but I LOVE THIS STUFF.
Most juices on the market, aren’t even real juice, they are “fruit drinks”or “cocktails.” But, there are some 100% preservative free juices available. With either option be cautious: 1) There is no fiber which makes it easier to absorb and cause your blood sugar levels to fluctuate and spike. THis can cause fatigue and other side effects. 2) It is less filling and can be consumed at a faster rate. If trying to lose weight, stay away from juice and choose whole fruit instead.
SOLUTION: If you must, juice your fruit at home.
8. Canned Soup
I am a sucker for canned tomato soup and adding basil. :/ These guys are loaded with sodium similar to canned veggies.
SOLUTION: Read the labels. (REPETITIVE, but helpful). Most companies now have low-sodium options available. Or find awesome recipes online to make it fresh.
9. Fat-Free Salad Dressing
When I think of dressing, I automatically think “fat.”People opt for the fat-free option and drench their greens thinking they are safe because it is “fat-free.” When anything says “fat-free” or anything-free, there is ALWAYS a replacement. Dressing is meant to be used lightly and only a little amount.
SOLUTION: Create your own dressing. Here is a simple vinaigrette: 1 part vinegar, olive oil, and dijon-healthy fats. Also, put your salad in a small container and SHAKE IT UP. This will cover more greens than tossing.
*Note: Keep everything you eat in moderation. Be sure to read the label and add variety to your diet. A colorful meal is a healthy meal. I also stick with the “outside” aisles mainly when shopping for food. If you aren’t sure, stay away from anything that contains a “label.”
Source: Article by Denise Faye (this blog entry is a summary of her article-9 “Healthy” Foods that Can Fool You)