Recently our Registered Dietitian, Alex, was asked "What are some things we think are healthy, but are not?"
It did not take her long to come up with this list, enjoy.
"Organic" salad dressing filled with soybean or canola oils (read ingredients)
Junk filled protein bars: READ YOUR INGREDIENTS. No matter how high the protein or how low the sugar, if the bar has the following ingredients in it...stay away!
- Soy protein
- Hydrogenated oils or refined oils like canola, soybean or cottonseed
- Acesulfame K
Veggie straws: You have to give these companies credit, adding "veggie" to their name to improve their reputation. Don't be fooled, the main ingredient in these snacks is potato/potato starch with a little dehydrated spinach or tomato added to it. Think again if you are counting these as a serving a vegetables!
Low-fat yogurt: The more fat you take out of yogurt, often times there is more sugar added for taste! First rule of thumb is to choose PLAIN, 2% of full fat yogurt. Secondly, if you buy the Greek variety, you are not only doubling the protein but you are also doubling the chances that your digestive system will tolerate the yogurt due to less lactose and less liquid whey.
Wheat bread: Sure, "brown bread" or visible seeds in your bread may SEEM healthier but in reality, wheat bread will spike your blood sugar just as much as white bread! Be sure to look at labels and avoid terms like "enriched", "caramel coloring", and "bleached". Soybean oil and high fructose corn syrup also doesn't belong. If you choose to eat bread, opt for a sprouted grain bread.
Fat-free Milk: Just like the yogurt above, as you remove fat from milk you strip away a lot of Vitamin A, Vitamin D, and enzymes. Often times, skim milk is higher sugar as well! Don't fear the fat in milk and for bonus points, opt for grass-fed dairy!
Soy: This plant based protein will always be a source of confusion but the reality is, soy mimics estrogen in our bodies. With the pesticides, plastics, agricultural hormones and contraceptives in our environment, add'l soy in our diet will only blow the roof off our out synthetic estrogen tank (male or female!). Whether it's soy protein, soy milk, soybean oil, your better off to avoid it. To add insult to injury, 90% of the soy crop in this country is genetically modified which has it's own implications.
Remember...healthy packaging doesn't = healthy food!