Health foods have come a long way over the last few years. When it first became “trendy” to buy healthy foods, the pre-packaged products available on the shelves seemed revolutionary.
But times have changed and we’ve since learned that many of those snacks deemed healthy are actually secret sugar bombs.
Here are 10 snacks you think are healthy but actually aren’t.
1. Muesli Bars
Despite the name sounding pretty healthy, most muesli bars are loaded with added sugar and too low in fiber to keep you full for any decent length of time.
If you’re looking for a muesli bar to snack on, be sure to check the ingredients to make sure it’s not a glorified sugar bomb!
2. Energy Bites
The energy you get from these usually comes from the enormous amounts of sugars! Energy bites are another hidden sugar bomb.
When choosing energy bites make sure they’re mostly made of nuts and seeds and sweetened with dates.
3. Trail Mix
Nuts and seeds are a great snack but trail mix tends to be full of dried fruit and chocolate — making it more like a candy than a healthy snack!
Try and stick to plain nuts and seeds to avoid the extra sugar.
4. Salted or Flavored Nuts
While nuts are a great snack, try and stick to plain, unsalted and unflavored nuts. Salted nuts can be high in sodium while flavors like honey-roasted are another unnecessary source of sugar.
5. Protein Bars
Like energy bites, protein bars are often loaded with sugars or artificial sweeteners. They pass as “healthy” because they claim to help you build muscle but don’t be fooled by the label!
Ideally, source your protein from natural sources or make sure your protein supplements are sugar and artificial sweetener free.
Granola has a whopping amount of sugars, making it no better for you than Froot Loops. If you notice a pattern developing here it’s because an enormous amount of pre-packaged “healthy food” is just a minefield of hidden sugars.
Microwave popcorn often contains a high level of harmful trans-fats. If you see the words “hydrogenated” or “partially-hydrogenated” in the ingredients list, stay well away!!
8. Dried Fruit
Dried fruit is easy to overeat and lacks the fiber, hydration, and general goodness of fresh. All you’re left with is the fructose. Opt for fresh fruit where you can.
When you juice fruit you are removing all the good stuff—all the fiber that your body loves so much. The juice you’re left with is all fructose aka sugar! The lack of fiber means it’s easy to drink copious amounts that you wouldn’t be able to eat in its whole form. Choose smoothies instead to get the goodness of fiber.
10. Smoothie Bowls
Sure, they might be totally insta-worthy, but those trending smoothie bowls you see all over the internet will cost you around 500 calories and 100+ grams of carbs, most of which come straight from sugar. Doesn’t leave you much to play with in your meals for the rest of the day!
The key takeaway here is to watch out for hidden sugars! Most foods that claim to be healthy are actually loaded with sugar. Make sure you read the label and aim for foods with no more than 6 grams of sugar per 100g serving.
To make life super-simple, our meal plans come with a variety of snack options. Get your personalized IIFYM Meal Plan today!