Friday, October 5, 2012

The Healthy Foods that Aren't

How many times have I listened to commercials spewing nonsense about their so-called "healthy" product?  I thought I'd share a list of those "healthy" products that aren't.  These items are all store-bought, so often you can make a healthy alternative.

1.  Yogurt - Buy it in the store and you are buying a product either loaded with sugar or some kind of artificial sweetener.  You are better off making your own.  Later this month I will share just how to do that!

2.  Granola Bars - Haven't we all been guilty of handing our children a granola bar because it's "better than a cookie"?  Well, it's not really.  Good news though - there are tons of homemade recipes online for healthy versions you can make yourself!

3.  Cheese- You know what they say: cheese is full of calcium and great for a healthy diet.  Well, maybe, if you have, like, one small slice.  But that's like eating "one chip".  Cheese is actually full of fat.  However, this is one area I fail...I love my cheese!  But, clearly this is an area I can work on to limit myself to "one itty bitty slice" instead of stuffing my face with cheese the size of my fist.  (I can't help it, it's soooo good.)

4.  Muffins - Order a muffin at Tim Horton's instead of a donut feeling like it's better?  Well, not so much.  Again, full of sugar.  Of course, if you only eat the muffin top (which is the best part anyway) you can rationalize that you only ate half the sugar.  Okay, okay, maybe we should bypass the muffins too.

5.  Granola- Now, granola, if you make yourself can be very healthy, frugal, and yummy!!!  I make it at home with coconut oil and honey.  But definitely avoid that stuff in the store that is loaded with sugar.  (What don't they put sugar in???)

6.  Smoothies -  Oh, this one gets me angry.  You may have noticed all those fast food chains jumping on the "we have real fruit smoothies" bandwagon.  Well, I'm not sure how much real fruit is in those, because there can't be a lot of room after they pour all their sugar and sometimes even ice cream or other types of cream.  If you want a smoothie, best to make this at home, or find one of those super uber healthy smoothie bars.

7.  Trail mix - I LOVE trail mix.  But I've noticed in my quest to find good trail mix that is affordable, that many of them contain added sugar.  There are trail mixes out there without sugar, just make sure you read the ingredients on the back.

What it comes down to, and I think you can see, is that most stuff is better if you make it at home.  Unfortunately, to be healthy it tends to mean less processed food, and a little more time in the kitchen.  But don't get discouraged, there are tons of simple meals you can make in the kitchen as well. And what's healthier and quicker than grabbing a piece of fruit and eating it whole, in it's beautiful natural state?

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