Remember when Rachel’s cruel sister tells Joey in Friends – “A moment on the lips, forever on the hips”?. When you cautiously decide to pay head to this line and avoid food to become fit, why blindly eat certain food in the guise of a diet? It is better to know and avoid than to not know and follow. Which is why we put together a list of certain foods that may seem healthy, when the real picture is entirely different. Read more to discover the truth!
1) Salad Dressings
No one likes to eat raw vegetables without any flavour on top. Which is why we prefer common salad dressings, right? But to our surprise, we realised that most salad dressings are actually loaded with unhealthy ingredients like artificial chemicals, sugar and trans fat.
Even though the vegetables in your salad are incredibly healthy, the unhealthy salad dressing totally negates any health benefits that are supposed to come your way.
FIX: You’re better off sprinkling some extra virgin oil and balsamic vinegar and avoid the preservatives and sodium filled dressings.
2) Fruit Juices or Just Liquid Sugar?
When we think about fruit juices we instantly put them in the “Healthiest Snacks” category, don’t we? Solely based on the fact that they’re made from, well, fruits. Which are actually extremely beneficial to your body in so many ways. Have you ever wondered why the store bought fruit juices taste so good? That’s because a lot of times there isn’t any real fruits in them at all. Most of the time, it’s just a mix of chemicals that taste like the fruit, but only better.
That being said, even if you do get your hands on 100% quality fruit juice, it’s still just fruit juice without the healthy component; the fibres. And what you’re left with is simply a sweetened drink.
FIX: Instead of drinking juice, make a point to chow down on two to three servings of whole fruit a day.
3) Cereals & Granola
Often considered the very image of a healthy breakfast, most cereals and granola bars are chock full of sugar (in sneaky forms that you’d never suspect). In fact, we tend to skip a meal and have a Granola bar instead. This is not a smart move as these bars are packed with sugar, sodium and saturated fat and are about as healthy for you as a bar of Snickers.
FIX: Add flavour to your regular old oats with fresh fruits and berries or just make your own granola bar – trust us, the effort is worth the insane number of calories you’ll be avoiding.
4) Commercial Sports Drinks
Let the labels not fool you! Sports drinks were put together while keeping athletes in mind. The electrolytes, sugar and flavoured water only helps during workouts that usually last longer than an hour or so. They’re definitely not suitable for short indoor workouts or just a beverage. Regular people don’t need the additional salts and their bodies certainly don’t require the extra liquid sugar.
FIX: It is extremely important to stay hydrated during workouts, but you will be much better off sticking to plain water.
Who doesn’t love a cold, delicious smoothie on a sunny day?! But sadly, when you’re on the road to become healthy, it’s not such a good idea. Yes, they seem like they’re jam-packed with whole fruits but they’re not necessarily good for our blood sugar levels or our belt sizes. Don’t be fooled by the store bought smoothies, they, more than often, contain high amounts of added sugar and calorie filled ingredients.
FIX: Make one at home so that you know exactly what’s in it! Use only whole fruits, Greek yogurt, and water to keep it a healthy and refreshing snack.
6) Frozen Yogurt
No matter what flavor you choose, there is often more sugar in frozen yogurt than in real ice cream. The freezing process used to make your dessert may kill some of the healthy gut bacteria found in regular yogurt. To compensate, some manufacturers of fro-yo (and standard yogurt, too) add extra probiotics (that contain sugar) after production. Extra sugar might also be added to get rid of that tart taste of the yogurt.
Fix: Return to actual ice cream – half a cup of real ice cream is more satiating, and you get to relish the real thing. Or if yogurt is your preferred poison, add fruits to your bowl and then top up with yogurt for a healthier and delicious meal.
7) “Diet” Soda
As much as we wish, the word “diet” doesn’t always mean healthy, and it’s the absolute truth in the case of diet soda. It’s not only made with artificial ingredients and flavourings, it also has a very high sodium content. People who opt for diet soda regularly tend to consume more calories after drinking it.
FIX: There isn’t a healthy alternative to soda, your best bet is to avoid these calorie-filled soft drinks altogether.
Don’t let them fool you anymore! Consult a professional nutritionist today to build a diet plan customized to your needs.