“Not all seemingly healthy foods are good. The unhealthy bit of some of them is quite big that it hides the good part,” says Ingabire Harris, a practicing medical doctor. She tells Women Today some of the foods that may turn out to be unhealthy for you.
Microwave popcorn:With so many varieties of microwave popcorn on the market, it’s easy to think that this snack is healthy. But the high levels of sodium and chemical diacetyl it contains make health professionals caution about making this a regular snack. A better choice is putting a few plain kernels in a brown paper bag and popping them yourself.
Light salad dressings:Have you ever looked at the ingredient list on light salad dressings? Quite long! It is filled with preservatives and other additives you can’t pronounce…including sodium and sugar. You’re much better off drizzling your veggies with a little extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
Flavored fat-free yogurt:Don’t fall into the fat-free trap. Just because something is fat-free it doesn’t make it healthy. In fact, many flavoured yogurts have upward of 15 grams of sugar in that tiny serving! Dr. Ingabire’s advice is to buy plain, fat-free yogurt and flavour it up with fruit or even a small drizzle of honey. That way, you control what is in it.
Energy drinks: With so many energy drinks on the market, many of which promise to pump you up and give you a killer workout with added caffeine, vitamins, and minerals, the temptation is too strong to resist. Similar to supplements, energy drinks aren’t regulated by the FDA, so it’s best to stick to plain water to rehydrate and energize your body.
Smoothies:Smoothies have long been the darling of the health-food world. Although some smoothies made with simple, whole-food ingredients can be healthy, don’t get fooled into thinking anything with the name “smoothie” is good for you. Some smoothies are made with lots of added sugars, high-calorie ingredients like chocolate syrup, or even full-fat ice cream as a base. Make one at homewith only fruits and low fat milk so that you know exactly what is in it.
Fish sandwiches:There’s no doubt that fish is healthy. But when you fry it, coat a bun with butter, and layer on tartar sauce or mayo, there’s little “health” left in it. To get the full benefits of fish, skip the sandwich altogether and enjoy a plain grilled fillet with some steamed veggies and rice pilaf instead.
Wheat bread:Don’t be fooled by wheat-bread products. If the package doesn’t specifically say “100-percent whole wheat,” then it’s probably mostly white bread with just a little wheat flour mixed in for marketing. Also make sure that each slice has at least 2 grams of fiber,another mark of truly healthy bread.