August 1, 2013

Getting Healthy: 5 Health Foods That Aren’t So Healthy

1. Low-Fat Fruit Yogurt

So it’s better than full fat yogurt, but that fruit on the bottom is jam packed with sugars. How jam packed? Well, an 8 oz. serving has 10 teaspoons of sugar and the calorie count for such yogurts surpass the 200 calorie mark. Instead of having a fruit on the bottom yogurt I recommend plain Greek yogurt with a little vanilla extract, cinnamon and some Stevia or Splenda.

2. Flavor Enhanced Water

Propel, Vitaminwater, Powerade, etc., etc. etc. The market for flavor enhanced water has grown substantially over the last few years. These waters have extra vitamins, electrolytes, minerals all aiming to "replenish" our body after a workout. However, these ingredients are also accompanied with ingredients like sugar, high fructose corn syrup and other artificial sweeteners and colors. My recommendation is to just stick to plain-old water. If you need a little flavor in your water, slice up an orange, put it into a container of water and put it in your fridge for you to enjoy after your next workout.

3. Veggie Chips

Guess what! Veggie Chips are actually potato chips that have been colored by vegetable powders to look like they are made from spinach and carrots. They are fried just like any other potato chip and are just as salty. Like a potato chip they are empty carbs and raise your blood sugar levels only for them to come crashing down a few hours later making you hungry and leaving you craving something else to eat.

4. Fat-Free Salad Dressing

In theory, fat-free dressing is great because it is lower in calories than full-fat dressing. However whenever you see a product that is fat-free it usually means that sugar and salt have been added to make up for the loss of flavor that natural fat has. Also, if you think about salad dressing, what is the "fat" in the dressing? It's the oil! If you buy a good dressing made with a monounsaturated oil it is far better than a fat-free dressing. Yes, it has more calories, however the oil allows for our bodies to absorb carotenoids such as lutein and beta-carotene that are contained in the salad that accompanies the dressing.

5. Restaurant Turkey Burgers

Whether you are eating a beef or turkey burger, both burgers when consumed from a restaurant are equally as bad. A turkey burger from a fast-food restaurant has almost the same amount of calories and fat as a beef burger. Why? Because most turkey burgers are made from dark meat and skin. Yes, skin of a turkey! These two parts of a turkey are put into the patties to retain the flavor and moisture in the turkey burger. I suggest you just stick to turkey burgers made from scratch at home. That way you know that you are eating white turkey breast which happens to be the healthy part of a turkey.

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