Healthy eating, along with exercise, is the foundation for a well-balanced lifestyle. You may be surprised to learn there are many unhealthy foods that are seemingly good for you. Below is a list of some of the most common offenders.
- Fruit drinks and juices are commonly comprised of less than 1% actual fruit juice; the rest is water, sugar and artificial sweetener. Try juicing your own fruits and vegetables for more health perks.
- Granola and granola bars have an abundance of sugar. Stick with bars that are high in protein and low in sugar and calories.
- Margarine was considered a healthy substitute for butter, but most contain trans fats, which are worse for arteries than the saturated fats in butter. If you must use butter, control your portions of a light spread.
- Multi-grain and wheat breads may sound healthy, but are typically made with refined grains, which mean less health benefits. Read nutrition labels carefully to get the most out of your multi-grain bread.
- Your morning latte. By adding whole milk, chocolate, or whipped cream, your morning coffee can balloon up to 400 calories or more. Stick with an 8oz glass of black coffee with nonfat milk, to get your caffeine fix with fewer calories.
- Fat Free Foods. While they may be ‘free’ of fats, they can be just as caloric as their full-fat options. FDA regulations state that foods can be labeled fat ‘free’ if it contains less than 0.5 grams of fat per serving – eating more than one serving can really add up. Opt to eat a smaller portion of the whole-fat version with less artificial sugars and flavor enhancements.
When in doubt, check packaging. Be conscious of calories, fats and sugars as well as ingredients. Always opt for natural, whole, raw foods that you prepare.