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Popular “Health” Foods to Avoid
There are many products lining store shelves that advertise as healthy or natural, when they are in fact loaded with sugar and fat. Here’s a look at 6 of the top seemingly healthy foods that are junk in disguise.
Nutella had television commercials airing across the country describing this spread as wholesome, made from a mix of skim milk, hazelnuts and just a touch of cocoa. This probably sounds rather healthy and like a good way to get in a serving of nuts in your diet, although Nutella is actually more like a chocolate bar than health food. A single woman took the company to court, claiming she was misled about the nutrition of this product and believed it was a wholesome addition to her family’s breakfast. A single serving of Nutella packs a whopping 200 calories, 21 grams of sugar and 11 grams of fat, all in only two tablespoons. Many consumers are even entitled to a refund for Nutella they purchased due to this court case.
2. “Natural” Breakfast Cereals
If cereal is your favorite way to start the morning, you probably thought you were doing something good for your body by choosing a natural brand like Kashi. Kashi has actually gotten into a great deal of trouble lately by marketing their cereal as completely natural. Scientists examined the cereal and found genetically modified organism (GMO) material in all of the soy used to make Kashi GoLean. While you may not have a problem with GMO food, this is certainly false advertising and not all natural.
3. Sports Drinks
Many people drink Gatorade after a workout to hydrate and improve electrolyte levels. If you haven’t run a marathon, however, Gatorade is just a huge dose of salt, sugar and food coloring. A study in the General Dentistry journal also linked sports drinks like Gatorade to tooth decay and enamel damage, much like soda.
4. Energy Bars
Energy bars are another so-called health food that belong in the candy bar section. Energy bars typically have very high levels of sugar, which give you that boost of energy, although many companies try to hide this by using different types of sugar. PowerBars, for example, have up to 30 grams of sugar from 3 different sources, including brown sugar, high-fructose corn syrup and cane syrup.
5. Meat without Artificial Preservatives
After Oscar Mayer’s recent announcement that their Selects line will no longer include artificial preservatives, you’re probably assuming these meats are now good for you. While the hot dogs and sliced meat no longer contain harmful chemicals like sodium nitrate and potassium chloride, they’re still processed meat. Harvard conducted a study that linked a daily serving of processed meat — including bacon, salami and hot dogs — to a 20% increased risk of premature death and increases your risk of cancer.
6. Bottled Green Tea
There are numerous studies showing the many health benefits of green tea. Brewed green tea benefits include lowered cholesterol, improved fat burning, reduced risk of stroke and diabetes and a lower risk of cancer and heart disease. These benefits, however, do not apply to bottled green tea you buy in the stores. Bottled green tea has a very tiny amount of the catechins that benefit your health, but come with a huge amount of sugar. SoBe Green Tea itself has over 50 grams of sugar in a bottle, more comparable to a soft drink than a healthy energy booster.