Unhealthy “Health Foods”

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Everywhere you go, people are talking about the next healthy food or diet craze.  I pin to many health boards on Pinterest, and I see unhealthy “health” pins all the time.  I am here to hopefully shed some light on the myths.

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1.  Low Fat /Fat Free Foods –  Fat is not a bad thing.  In fact, your body needs healthy fats to thrive.  Fat makes your skin glow and your hair shine.  Fats are crucial to every cell membrane in the entire body.  The structural components of the cell membranes within the brain, and also the myelin sheath that lines the nerve cells, are made up of fats.  Often not only are fat free foods lacking in healthy fats, but they often contain extra sugars or artificial sweeteners as you will see in my Yoplait Exposed post.  It is important to check all labels to be safe.

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2.  Energy or Nutrition Bars –  Most nutrition or energy bars contain soy protein isolate or whey protein isolate, which are hidden sources of MSG.  You can see that in my Kashi Bars Exposed post.  It’s important to check the label for those ingredients.  I would also advise you to keep track of the sugar content as well.  1 teaspoon of sugar is equal to 4.2 grams.  The American Heart Association recommends that you keep your daily intake of sugar at about 6 teaspoons.  You can easily make my larabars or granola bars.  I make clif bars as well.  They would save you money as well.  Once again, check the labels to be safe.  If you need a decent store bought option, you can look at Nature’s Path.

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3.  Sports Drinks and Vitamin Water –  Did you know that a Vitamin Water contains almost as much sugar as a can of coke?  Gatorade contains artificial sweeteners and also artificial dyes.  If the artificial dyes aren’t enough of a reason to stop drinking these, watch this video.  Warning, it’s a bit graphic.  Coconut water is a natural electrolyte replacer.  If you don’t want to drink coconut water, you can try these options.

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4.  Reduced Fat Peanut Butter –  As I said earlier, your body needs healthy fats.  Often, when fat is removed from a food, artificial sweetener, sugar or chemicals are added in to make it taste as good as the full fat version.  You can see that in my Peter Pan Exposed post.  Did you know you can make your own healthy peanut butter in 5 minutes?  All you need is peanuts.  You will never believe how easy it is.

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5.  Store Bought Veggie Burgers –   Most store bought burgers contain chemicals, additives and GMOs.  You will see that in my Boca Burgers Exposed post.  Another thing to take note of, is that most veggie burgers don’t even contain actual veggies.  A lot of them are made up of soy protein isolate which is a hidden form of MSG.  Again, check the labels to be sure.  I have several veggie burger recipes on the blog.  If you need a better store bought option, try Sunshine Burgers.  Their burgers have been non GMO verified and have a much cleaner ingredient list.

Unhealthy Health Foods

 

25 thoughts on “Unhealthy “Health Foods”

  1. I’ve heard a lot of friends talk about drinking Spark-I haven’t looked at the ingredient list yet but was wondering if you have researched it or know someone who has?

      1. Yes-I have a friend trying to get me to try it (she sells it)-she said it’s basically amino acids & vitamins but really helps w energy/workouts… Just wondering if it’s been researched!

          1. Spark is is distributed by Advocare and contains artificial sweeteners. For that reason I personally do not consider it healthy. I know many who believe it to be the best thing for their health and feel better taking it but it also contains caffeine and small amount of vitamins which the vits would make them feel better (esp B vits)

  2. Thanks for this list. I’ve been making my own granola bars for snacks, but my husband keeps buying Cliff bars! I’ve been telling him they’re crap and now I can show him this post to back it up. Going to try your version of the bars and see how he likes them.

    1. You are very welcome! My clif bar recipe is very adaptable and you can use it as a base to add whatever flavors you like. I hope you enjoy mine. :)

    1. i remember when i told my doctor i was going to switch from white bread to whole wheat bread – he said be careful – it has more sugar in it. I would have thought it would have been healthier – what do you do for bread? – do you make your own, i just don’t have the time – I try to get it from a bakery actually when i can and will pick up an extra loaf – and freeze them both so this way i have bread and i think they would use less chemicals than store bought bread. what are your thoughts?

      1. I am not a big bread eater. I usually buy Food for Life bread for my kids. It’s made from sprouted grains and no sugar. Your doctor is probably right about wheat bread having more sugar. Many store bought brands do contain sugar to make the whole wheat bread taste as good as the white. Just make sure to read the labels when you buy it. If you are buying from a bakery, it’s probably much better than buying it at the grocery store.

  3. Could you clarify whats so harmful about MSG? I’m always confused by it. I think nutritional yeast is also a form of naturally occurring MSG. Are all forms to be avoided? Why? Thanks!!

  4. I was wondering if you could recommend something good to pack for the kids lunches as far as drinks. My son is 14 and he is always drinking. He gives me a hard time drinking water. I was buying Gatorade but I know it’s not good. Not sure what to buy. If I let him he would drink soda but I don’t buy soda for that fact.

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