Unhealthy “Healthy Food”: Food we think is healthy but isn’t

Post by MaggieB. Image by Tesa Robbins

Have you ever gone to the kitchen about to grab junk food but you reach for the healthier option instead, or the opposite? The truth is, some of the so called healthy foods are actually worse for you than the junk food.

One donut usually has the same amount of sugar in it as a Yoplait yogurt, and I don’t know about you but I’d rather eat the donut.  

I am not here to tell you to eat donuts instead of yogurt- do whatever you want. I am here to inform you that the “healthy food” you could be eating is not as healthy as you might think. There is so much food we put into our bodies thinking it’s good for us when in reality it’s just unhealthy food in disguise.

Check out this article this article by Jennipher Walters to see a list of 50 seemingly healthy foods that are bad for you.

Fooling Foods

Prepared Salads

Salad is extremely good for you if you make it by hand, but packaged salads contain a ton of mayonnaise and extra unhealthy add-ins which contributes to higher amounts of fat.

Granola/Granola Bars

 These two are very high in calories and depending on the brand can contain a lot of sugar. In this article, Nutritionbyeve asks the question, is granola healthy? She comes back with the answer yes and no. This is true for many of the foods I am listing, there are always pros and cons.

Dried Fruit

Like most of these foods dried fruit is not necessarily bad for you but contains 3 times more calories than fresh fruit since more sugar is added to insure the fruit is preserved well.

Dried Fruit, Apricots, Food

Image by Jenó Szabó

Smoothies

If the smoothie has just fruit in it- great. It gets unhealthy when other random ingredients are packed in smoothie packages. Time Magazine claims that drinks such as smoothies can rob you of the satisfaction of real solid foods which in turn leads to consuming more calories.

Microwave Popcorn

Popcorn is a healthy alternative to most junk food, but that is if the popcorn is bought by the kernel and is popped by yourself. Microwave popcorn has tons of added chemicals and unnecessary fat.
Check out this video!

FALSE LABELS

Multigrain

Do not be fooled by multigrain breads, they are actually not any healthier than white breads. Multigrain is not whole wheat, it is just multiple grains which could actually be refined grains (the same as white bread).

Gluten-Free

According to this article, unless you are gluten intolerant you should not go gluten-free because gluten-free foods decrease our nutrient intake. In fact, they are higher in sugar and have less vitamins.

Fat- Free

In both low fat and fat free foods more sugar is added to make up for the taste of the product. Also our body needs healthy fat! According to this article by Life With Greens you are better off just buying the full-fat food product because the chemicals added to fat-free foods mess with your body.

Sugar-Free

In foods labeled sugar-free, other unhealthy food products are replaced with sugar to make it taste better. Artificial sweeteners are often added which contribute to many health issues.

Diet

Diet foods such as diet pop can actually lead to gaining weight. When you drink the diet pop, you are not consuming regular sugar so your body craves sugar and what you will actually be doing later on is eating more sugar. According to Health.com by drinking one a day, it increases risk of type 2 diabetes by 36%.

WHAT FOOD SHOULD I EAT?

Ultimately food is food and choose whatever you feel like, but if you are concerned with your health or feel the food you are eating isn’t giving you enough energy follow these steps.

  1. Read the labels! I’m not just saying read the calories but check the sodium intake, amount of sugar, and fat. Do not just settle for reading the description on the product because many companies falsely advertise.
  2. Prepare as much food as you can at home. Try to go out less and enjoy more homemade meals therefore you will know exactly what you are putting into your food.
  3. Enjoy everything in moderation. Do not restrict yourself of fat or go on diets restricting certain foods unless your health depends on it. Your body needs a little bit of everything so do not cut out food from your diet.

Depending on the brand, and where the food was made the nutritional value differs. If there is anything to learn from this it is to look at the nutritional value of your food, prepare your food at home, and enjoy everything in moderation.

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