Heidi

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Mom, desperately trying to get the health thing right! I started this blog so that I can pass along all the great things that I learn everyday on damage control for our wonderful bodies. It is tough to keep up sometimes with all the things going on in our daily lives so hopefully some of the helpful hints that I provide can make your life easier and healthier. I welcome your comments and tips as well! I am a vegetarian, animal rights advocate and avid animal rescuer.
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2008-05-26

Mmmmmmm These Foods Sound Good And Healthy But Aren't

Don't you just hate when you are all proud of yourself, thinking how well you have eaten only to look at the label and discover that you actually could have just had the candy bar instead because the label didn't really coincide with your idea that this was healthy? That has to be right up there on my most frustrating things. I take food and trying (key word is trying) to be healthy very seriously so if I eat a something I didn't really want but thought was healthy and gave up the much coveted candy bar for-I get a little upset. I want to share with you a few foods that you might think are really good for you but in reality are not so you won't run into that problem.

Don't Be Fooled By These Food Frauds

**Tuna Fish Sandwich With Mayonnaise-
The typical tuna fish sandwich found in a restaurant has about 700 calories and 43 grams of fat. Tuna fish has about 35 calories per ounce and is packed full of omega 3's but mayonnaise has 100 calories per tablespoon. Maybe better to try a low-fat cheese sandwich or Turkey with mustard.

**Multigrain Tostitos-A one-ounce (8 chips) serving of Multigrain Tostitos has more sugar (1 gram) than any of its “Four Wholesome Grains.” That is tricky advertising I think.

**Protein Bars-I am sure there are a few good ones out there but overall most are just glorified candy bars according to Ms. Zuckerbrot author of the F-Factor Diet. They are often high in calories, fat and do little to satisfy a persons hunger. This one really gets me. I can't tell you how many of these I have had in lieu of a nice piece of fruit or some berries thinking I was being so healthy.

**Kelloggs Nutri-Grain Pancakes-Now I have to admit that whenever I hear grain, whole wheat I instantly think-ooohhhhh, that must be good for me. Apparently not always because the box boasts that these pancakes are “Made with Whole Wheat and Whole Grain,” but they consist primarily of white flour. More here.

**Pretzels-Are you kidding me? I cannot tell you how many bags of pretzels I used to eat in college thinking I must be just about the healthiest girl in the place.
Some people go under the misguided notion that pretzels are a healthy alternative to crisps. Certainly, one serving of pretzels contain one gram of fat compared to the 10 grams contained in the same serving of crisps. However, they basically have no nutritional value at all. In fact, any they did have, such as fibre, has been taken out in the process of making them. It explains why you never feel full eating them. More here.

**Granola Bars-While granola is made with whole oats that are high in fiber, the oats in granola bars are glued together with ingredients like high-fructose corn syrup, honey, and barley malt -- all of which quickly raise blood sugar.

**DanActive Immunity Dairy Drink-This Dannon product claims to help “strengthen your body's defenses.” But the only study Dannon did to see if drinking DanActive kept people from getting sick found that it didn’t! More here.

**Fat-free, Sugar-Free Muffins- Regardless of whether a muffin is fat free or sugar free, they still usually have around 600 calories, according to Zuckerbrot from the F-Factor diet."It’s nothing but cake in disguise, especially these double chocolate chip-type muffins,” she said. “But even bran muffins, they’re very dense, very high in calories. The same thing goes for scones. People think that because they’re not sweet, they’re healthy. But scones are full of butter.Baked Beans-Beans are a great source of fiber and protein but most pre-made cans of baked beans are loaded with sugar. 1 cup of baked beans may contain up to 24 mg of sugar (about the same as an 8 oz can of soda).

**Fruit Cocktail Or Applesauce-I know they seem healthy because of the fruit but keep in mind that many are loaded with added sugar and heavy syrups. Eat some fresh fruit instead.

**Reduced Fat Peanut Butter-I must admit to really falling for this one. I love peanut butter and what could have been better but lower fat, right? Wrong. Real peanut butter that is made with plain peanuts is high in protein and fat but they are the healthy fats that your body needs. Reduced fat peanut butters are generally made with a bit of real peanut butter and then mixed with fillers like sugar. I recommend sticking with regular peanut butter,obviously.

I learned a lot doing this post and am glad to know these things so that I can avoid these pitfalls. I think it can be really hard sometimes to weed through all the food hype so hopefully this helps you on your journey to living a fit and healthy life.




18 comments:

ssgreylord said...
As I sit here, I just finished a muffin, washed down with a regular coke (which I do know is bad for me) and I'm thinking about that low fat peanut butter sanwich I had planned for luch.

Ugh. Boy have I been wrong, especially when I feed my kids applesauce thinking I am a brilliantly healthy mom. Way to blow my cover, Healthnutwannabeemom.

Actually I appreciate the head's up. We'll be making a few changes around here..
osoth said...
thank heidi, this's good blog too.
ThePeachTree said...
Fantastic post!! I think these are all so important for people to think twice about when at the grocery store :)
hparis said...
sometimes too little knowledge can be dangerous. My late husband had obesity related onset diabetes, and was told by his doctor to lose weight or die, which he did, but... was still making horrible food choices as he was only looking at the sugar grams in his food. He'd look at a label, check to see if the sugars were within a certain limit, and say, "yep, I can eat this." Plus oftentimes he would concern himself with the sugar grams and neglect what the ingredients were which comprised the remaining carbohydrates in the item. He convinced himself that it was ok to eat tons of refined foods with white flour and such just because it was low in sugar. But he ended up killing himself with the sodium and fat content in the end as he died from a heart attack.

I guess the lesson learned is to learn to read the whole label and to understand how our bodies process nutrients. And probably most importantly, food manufacturers are in business to compete and sell products, not concern themselves with your health. They load their packaging with key words which they think will grab your attention and get you to buy without looking.
MizFit said...
once upon a time pretzels gave me ENORMOUS SADDLEBAGS.

thanks guys,

MizFit
asithi said...
I used to think the same thing about pretzels too! I would keep eating them instead of chips thinking they are healthier. Now I do not even touch the stuff. When I need a salt mix, I reach for sunflower seeds instead. At least the seeds are nutritious, even though the salt probably offset any of its health benefit.
Webbyzard said...
Hi,
I love your blog and the topics you blog about. Great healthy tips and so much more. We also have some of the same interests, visit my blog at www.webbyzard.com
Are you starting the Health Nation site and the Affiliate Program as well?
Tom Parker said...
Thanks for the great advice Heidi. I totally agree with you abpit the word grain. When I see grain in the title I automatically associate this with a healthy product. I was also totally unaware that low fat peanut butter was bad for you. Very surprising.
Sogeshirtsguy said...
Wow did not know about a lot of those. I was brain washed into thinking protein bars were good for me. Whoops!
Mooney ♥ said...
Gosh, I have to say that I'm really shocked about the Tostitos thing! I haven't had their multi-grain chips, but you'd think it would be like a sun chip... oh my gosh, now you've got me wanting to read the sun chips label!

I usually just look at the calories and the fiber when I read labels, but now you've got me wanting to really look at them!! That's not a bad thing though, *wink *wink.


Janell
Jackie said...
Great post. Since becoming Vegan I am an avid label reader and it is scary to read how unhealthy many foods supposedly healthy are.
Lady G said...
It's a shame but you really can't believe a single word in food advertisements, and have to read the label of every single food you buy. It can be very surprising to read what you are actually eating!
Cynthia said...
I guess I never really believed most of this stuff was *good* for me, but I admit... I still sometimes justify a protein bar, simply because it has protein. And I *know* they are essentially candy. I suppose they are marginally better than an actual candy bar. Still better not to eat either!

The fewer labels foods have, the happier I am. Meat, fish, chicken, fruits, veggies, whole grains etc... don't need labels.

The more something claims it is "Healthy" on a label, the more suspicious I am.
Mark Fowler said...
About the Multigrain Tostitos, please say it ain't so!! I love those things and hate to give them up...but might just have too...thanks for the tip (I think...)
matt wright said...
I am really glad you posted this one! It just always comes down to eating naturally, and not a whole bunch of man-made junk. I always avoid the fat-free, sugar free rubish, and am far healthier for it! Don't even get me started on the evils of marg..
Laura said...
Wow, I knew about most of those, but NOT peanut butter!!! I definitely want to switch my reduced fat for regular now. Thanks!
Anonymous said...
I just started drinking the DanActive drink...thanks for sharing the info on it...I don't even really like how it tastes and if it's not even that good for me anyways I'm quitting immediately.
Lawrence said...
I am so happy to know more details on 'Tuna Fish Sandwich With Mayonnaise' and other foods. You know tuna fish sandwich is one of my favourite food...mmmmmmmm....love to eat it now..

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