Top not so healthy ‘health’ foods

Most health foods that you think are good for you and ‘the’ food you should be eating may not be as ‘healthy’ as they seem!

What do you look for when you shop for healthy food – foods with no cholesterol, no trans fat, no added sugar, organic, fat-free?  Do you check the nutritional labels on these foods? When you actually look at the preservatives, additives, sugar or sodium these foods contain, you will realise they are not so healthy as they claim to be.

So, stop right now, read this article and then decide if your ‘health foods’ are actually healthy.

Diet soda

Let’s begin with the all-time favourite – diet soda. These zero-calorie drinks are of course low on calories, but they are also full of caffeine, artificial sweeteners, artificial flavours and colours. This can in turn lead to cravings, high blood pressure and hyper activity.

Plain water is the best for you, so get used to drinking it!

Energy bars

Yes, energy bars are said to be ‘the’ snack before you begin your workout. However, what you may not know is that these energy bars are packed with fructose corn syrup, sugar and saturated fat – enough to clog you arteries! In addition, each ‘snack sized’ bar contains more than 350 calories, especially the meal replacement varieties. Instead, have slice of low-fat cheese and some whole grain crackers.

Fruit yogurt

While fruit and yogurt are the healthiest food one can have, when it comes packaged together, it might not be so good for you. Two reasons – first these ‘fruity yogurt packs’ contain too much sugar and the sugar actually kills the good bacteria in the yogurt. This means, the sugar in these fruit yogurts definitely does not help in weight loss.

What you can do is, chop some seasonal fruits, add some yogurt and enjoy a healthy desert any time of the day!

Low-fat peanut butter

Peanut butter is good for you because it contains monounsaturated fat which is healthy for your heart. While both the regular as well as the low-fat variety have the same amount of calories, the low-fat variety has more sugar added to it. It might be good to cut down on the fat, but there’s sugar in it which is worse for your health. Try looking for a peanut butter with no added oils or even better make some of your own!

Baked or fried potato chips?

Do you pick the baked potato chips instead of the fried variety because they are healthy? Well, there’s not much difference and you are surely not losing any weight by opting for the baked variety. Nutritionists say baked potato chips are definitely not a healthy alternative if you are looking for a tea time snack and you only cut down on about 20 calories per serving when you choose the baked chips. So, the general misconception is that since it’s low-fat/baked you can binge! According to nutritionists, it is actually better to eat a small portion of regular chips or go for some carrots sticks and a delicious yogurt-spinach dip.

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