Don’t be fooled, there are plenty of so-called healthy foods that aren’t healthy as their makers would lead you to believe.
Certain “healthy” snacks are advertised as being good for you, but when you read their ingredients you’ll see they aren’t really as healthy as you might think.
Imagine reluctantly eating something you really don’t enjoy because you thought that it was healthy and later finding out that it isn’t. Well, you wouldn’t be alone because it happens all the time.
Fear not though because we not only write about healthy foods, we also talk about the unhealthy as well.
Healthy Foods That Aren’t Really Healthy
Here is our list of ten so-called ‘healthy’ foods that are quite popular but not quite as healthy as advertised.
Sweet Potato Fries
Some people choose sweet potato fries over standard French fries thinking that they are a healthier option.
Even though sweet potato fries are higher in vitamins and lower in carbohydrates, they still contain a high amount of calories.
For perspective, a serving of fries may contain 16 g of fat and 320 calories while the same serving of sweet fries would contain about 20 g of fat and 390 calories.
What’s worse is that some people would eat more sweet potato fries thinking that they are low in fats and calories. Both sweet potato fries and French fries are deep-fried so both can cause weight gain and be detrimental to health.
Therefore, there is no point in eating sweet potato fries. Instead, we recommend you eat baked sweet potato fries, as they are better for heart health.
Granola bars are advertised as ‘healthy’ foods, but they are usually packed with preservatives. Plus, they must taste good or people wouldn’t buy them, which is why they are generally high in sugar or artificial sweeteners.
Consider this: peanut butter jelly usually contains 210 calories and about 18 g of sugar. A Nature Valley granola bar contains 11 grams of sugar and 190 calories.
This means that granola bars aren’t as healthy as you might think. In fact, for certain people, they can aid in weight gain.
Smoothies can be quite healthy as long as they have a perfect balance of veggies and whole fruits with sensible portion sizes.
However, the problem is many smoothies, especially the ones you buy from juice shops, are laden with sugar and pack sweetened yogurt, honey, and fruit juices.
When these ingredients are combined, you get a snack that’s loaded with calories.
Cauliflower Pizza Crust
Some people prefer cauliflower crust, not for the taste but because they think they are eating healthy.
These crusts use fats and cheese to bind the crust which is why they are probably low in carbohydrates but not in calories.
Not to mention, carbohydrates are the body’s primary energy source. If you don’t eat enough, you might experience things like headaches, fatigue, constipation, diarrhea, cravings for sugar, weight-loss resistance, and sleep issues.
If the cauliflower pizza crust doesn’t taste as good as the original, you won’t feel satisfied from eating it.
You may feel deprived and will be likely to have cravings and eat more later to feel satisfied.
This is why it isn’t a good idea to replace the original crust with a cauliflower pizza crust. Instead, you can top your pizza crust with tons of veggies and skip the meat.
Don’t think that consuming veggie chips will increase your antioxidant and fiber intake.
Even though the labels of veggie chips say that they contain actual vegetables, the truth is that they usually contain veggie powders.
These powders lack nutritional value and are high in sodium (and sometimes, in sugar) to replicate the original flavor of potato chips.
If you are really looking for a healthy snack, munch on celery sticks or raw carrots instead of veggie chips.
Organic candy may be marketed as a healthy food but at the end of the day, it is still candy and may contain cane sugar, honey, fruit juices, and other blood-sugar-raising ingredients. It is nutritionally void and doesn’t provide any substantial health benefits. This is why it is best to steer clear of organic candies.
Sweetened Breakfast Cereals
Sweetened breakfast cereals are popular among children and are usually eaten with milk.
To make them tastier, the grains are rolled, flaked, pulped, shredded, or roasted. These cereals are high in added sugar which is why they aren’t a healthy option. Some are just as sweet as candies.
Choose cereals that are low in added sugar and rich in fiber or make your own from scratch.
These drinks may be a good option for athletes but aren’t ideal for average Joe’s who don’t work out.
Energy drinks and sports drinks are popular among adolescents, teens and middle-aged adults. But what you are getting from drinking them is more calories and more sugar.
One bottle of Powerade contains 34 g of sugar and 130 calories. Gatorade (one bottle) contains 34 g of sugar and 140 calories. If you aren’t engaged in high-intensity workouts, avoid drinking energy and sports drinks.
Reduced-Fat Peanut Butter
Reduced-fat peanut butter sounds like a great idea. After all, aren’t it’s low in fat, right?
The issue is, it contains added sugar to make up for the loss of fat.
For example, there may be 3 g of sugar, 16 g of fat and 190 calories in two tablespoons of normal peanut butter while the reduced-fat alternative may contain 4 g of sugar, 12 g of fat and 190 calories.
Excessive sugar in the diet can lead to high blood sugar or insulin sensitivity which could lead to type-2 diabetes among other health problems.
If you want to eat peanut butter that is healthy for you, try the ones without any added sweeteners.
Gluten provides a delicious, chewy texture in several food products including cakes, pasta, muffins, and bread.
When you remove this ingredient, you won’t get the same texture unless you add something to make up for it. Food manufacturers generally add in fillers, like fats and sugar, to make up for the loss of texture and flavor.
So the gluten-free snacks ultimately end up with more sugars and calories.
In a Nutshell
Just because these foods made our 2019 list of healthy foods that aren’t really healthy, this doesn’t mean they can be consumed in moderation.
In our quest to live healthy lives, we shouldn’t cut-out all unhealthy foods, because, in the end, this can do more harm than good.
Rather, we should always be aware that awareness and moderation can go a long way in living happy and healthy lives.
If you have any questions please leave a comment below or contact us here.