Even if you haven’t set a specific resolution to lose weight, you are probably still making an effort to eat better in the New Year. After a heavy holiday season, it’s a good idea to eat a little cleaner and trim some unnecessary calories from your diet. When you do, however, you might fall into the trap of foods that seem like they’re healthy, but actually aren’t. Here’s a look at some of the worst offenders.
Food labels are often deceptive, and one of the most common fake-healthy labels you’ll see is “Low Fat.” Fats are not necessarily bad for you, and many products that are labeled as low fat have extra sugars to supplement the flavor lost from the fat, and this is especially true of low fat dressings and condiments. What’s more, is there’s little evidence that a low-fat diet is any healthier. A better fix—make your own salad dressing with lemon juice, honey, mustard, and olive or avocado oil.
Granola and Energy Bars
When it comes to granola and energy bars, fewer ingredients are better. Often, these foods are marketed as healthy choices with “all natural” being a key selling point. However, natural can still pack in tons of sugar, fat, and even sodium, so read the label carefully. Rice syrup, agave syrup, and coconut sugars are all ingredients to watch out for, since they have the same calorie content as sugar but are often touted as healthier options.
Even something as simple as dried fruit or fruit leather can be much less healthy than you think. Though these foods start with real fruit, they are often packed with added sugars and preservatives. The best choice is always a piece of fresh fruit, and freeze dried fruit with no added ingredients is a close second.
Chia seeds are so small that you would expect them to be harmless, and they seem to be in everything these days. They do bring some nutritional value to the table, but too many can be a problem for your digestive tract. These seeds absorb a surprising amount of liquid, and they may also become lodged in areas of the digestive tract where they can cause serious damage. Bottom line—limit your ingestion of this trending “health” food.
It’s not always easy to know the healthiest choices, but MeMD is always available to help you. We provide online medical consultations for an affordable flat rate, so the medical guidance you need is always within reach.