These days it's tough to navigate our health at the grocery store. What's actually good for us and what we think is good for us can be two completely different things.
Here are 8 so-called "health" foods you may want to rethink before placing in your grocery cart:
1. Sports drinks. Most sports drinks are just made up of sugars, chemicals, and salt. While many people use them to hydrate, these drinks can cause a myriad of health issues in the body.
Solution: Try coconut water or chia seeds instead. Coconut water provides much-needed electrolytes, and both coconut water and chia seeds are great hydrators.
2. Almond milk. Many almond milks contain a chemical called Carrageenan that can disrupt your GI tract and cause other issues.
Solution: Make your own at home or look for a brand that doesn't contain Carrageenan on the ingredients list.
3. Frozen yogurt. At some point we came to the conclusion that this was healthier than ice cream. The truth is that it is loaded with sugars and other processed ingredients that aren't good.
Solution: You can easily make your own ice cream or frozen yogurt in about 10 minutes at home if you have a small ice cream maker.
4. Skim milk. Remove the fat and we're healthier, right? Wrong. Recent studies are showing people that consume healthy fats are actually able to maintain healthier weights. Those that drink whole or 2% milks end up fuller sooner, and do less binge eating to make up for the lack of fullness from skim milk.
Solution: Choose whole or 2% milk.
5. Turkey burgers. While they're lower in saturated fats, sodium is usually higher. Plus, you're also dealing with things like added growth hormones and an overuse of antibiotics.
Solution: If you do go for turkey, choose the organic option. Or you can try a veggie burger. Just be sure to choose one without a bunch of additives.
6. Reduced fat peanut butter. Skimming on the fat will get you things like partially hydrogenated oils, added sugars, carbohydrates, and sodium. And real healthy fats are actually good for the body.
Solution: Go with an all-natural or organic peanut butter. You can even make it easily at home and avoid the additives.
7. Sushi. Trust me...no one mourns this fact more than I, as I am an avid sushi-lover. Because of the white rice, sushi is a high glycemic food with very little protein that can result in rapid increases in blood sugar and insulin levels.
Solution: Order sushi "naruto" or "sashimi" and the chef will either roll your sushi in cucumber instead of rice or just serve it as is: fish only.
8. Granola. We see the word granola and suddenly feel like we've hit the motherload of healthier snacking. Not so true. Many granolas contain way too much sugar and oils.
Solution: Make your own so that you know the ingredients that are going into it, or choose a simpler whole grain cereal for your morning routine.
What are some food items that you can think of that aren't necessarily healthy?
Crystal Collins, a Savings.com DealPro, is an Atlanta local, adventurer, a health advocate and thrifty as can be. Check her out on her blog at NaturalThrifty.com.
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