Beware Of These ‘Health’ Foods

We often try to be healthy by choosing to buy things that say all natural, or health food. But what if the things that are marketed to us as healthy, aren’t all that healthy after all?  Let take a look at some commonly confused health foods that are actually bad for you:

1. “All-Natural” Breakfast Cereals: Kashi, Kellogg's "natural" brand, has been under fire from consumers over the fact that the ingredients used in their cereals aren't completely natural as their marketing implies.  In fact, scientists recently detected GMO material in 100% of the soy in Kashi GoLean.  To avoid this pitfall, carefully read the ingredients to make sure the cereal isn’t packed with unhealthy additives and artificial ingredients.

2. Sports Drinks: While Gatorade may be beneficial if you're putting in an extremely hard workout, most of us are just getting an unwelcome dose of sugar, salt, and loads of artificial food coloring.  Most of us aren’t doing the strenuous levels of activity that would warrant the need for this type of drink.  Further, sports and energy drinks are responsible can cause serious tooth enamel damage and decay. Instead, opt for plain water.

3. Energy Bars: The reason you feel a boost from your bar is most likely due to the copious amounts of sweetener added to it.  Many companies disguise just how much sugar is hidden inside by using various types of sugar—like high-fructose corn syrup, brown sugar, and cane juice—to try and fool you.  Instead look for bars containing the most natural ingredients, no more than 200 calories and 20 grams of sugar per serving or choose trail mix, low-fat cheese and crackers, or make your own granola bars so you can control what goes in them.

4. Bottled Green Tea: The benefits of green tea have been touted for years, but the sweetened, bottled beverages aren't what experts are referring to.  They are loaded with sugar, and have a minimal amount of the normal green tea antioxidants. Instead, buy green tea bags and make your own green tea in a pitcher so you can control how much sweetener you use.

5. Egg Substitute: It’s not that egg substitute is necessarily bad for you, but it’s not better for your cholesterol than the real thing.  Egg substitute typically contains a vast majority of egg whites and some other nutrients to make up for the lack of yolk like iron, zinc, folate, thiamin, vitamins A, E, B6, B12 and vegetable oil.  The vegetable oil only adds to the fat content.  Instead of using egg substitute, figure out what you want to replace: the whole egg, the yolk or the white?  Substitute accordingly.