You walk into your favourite supermarket and add food products promising health benefits on their packaging in your cart. You pay the bill and feel proud that you didn’t buy that enormous soft drink bottle or the ice-cream you were craving for the other day.
Firstly, congratulations on your conscious effort to leading a healthier life! Secondly, 90% of your grocery bag has items that aren’t as healthy as you think they are. When you embark upon your fitness journey, you want to eat healthier to stay fit. However, one mistake many of us make is not knowing how healthy the food we buy really is.
Most processed food products that claim to be “low-fat” or “high-fibre” are unhealthy at best and downright health-wreaking at worst. Here’s a list of 5 foods that you should avoid if you’re on a mission to eat healthy:
1. Flavoured Water
With the claim of hydrating you with added minerals and vitamins, flavoured water brands have taken the market by storm. However, flavoured water is not much better than your run-of-the-mill cola. It contains a ridiculous amount of sugar. Some brands even have as high as 13 grams of sugar per serving! If you want an alternative to plain water for hydrating post workout, then opt for natural coconut water instead.
2. Granola Bars
‘Granola bars are healthy’ is probably the biggest food myth circling the health-conscious community. Most granola bars have too much sugar and too little protein and fibre. This means that they will not only add unnecessary sugar in your diet but will also make you feel hungry shortly after eating it. Opt for dry fruits like walnuts that contain antioxidants and healthy fats instead.
The word ‘salad’ automatically makes anything that precedes it seem healthy. If you order a salad at a restaurant in hopes of sticking to your healthy eating plan, you’re about to be disappointed. Now, don’t get me wrong. Salads are wonderful, but it’s all the toppings and heavy dressing that make them as bad as a burger. If you want to eat salads, prepare them at home so you know exactly what goes down your belly.
4. Frozen Yogurt
Frozen yogurt shops are popping in every nook and corner these days. People view them as a healthier alternative to their ice cream cravings. However, a cup of frozen yogurt contains 221 calories as compared to 275 calories in vanilla ice cream. One might point out that there’s a difference of 54 calories. But, since we think it’s healthier we tend to eat more which makes it worse.
5. Instant Oatmeal Packets
Oats are great for health. Instant oatmeal packs? Not so much. The instant version of the healthy grain contains large quantities of sugar, sodium, and preservatives. While instant oats are handy and better than fried snacks, you should pick the regular variety instead.
The best way to eat healthy is to prepare everything you eat yourself with ingredients that are good for you. If you must purchase processed foods, then make sure that you thoroughly check all contents.