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Beware of Pseudo-Healthy Foods

By Jimmie Flores Subscribe to RSS | June 5th 2012 | Views:
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I surely can’t be the only one who’s noticed the marketing for supposedly healthy food choices in supermarkets and restaurants recently. Although this indicates a positive trend in the sense that Americans desire to be healthy is increasing, many of these claims of a healthy nutrition profile are simply a company’s ploy to sway the unknowing consumer. In this article, I’ll share a few of the instances in which I’ve noticed people wrongly assuming a food is healthy.

Consider the many items are marketed as “low-fat” or “reduced-fat” on supermarket shelves. Although the fat content has been reduced, many food manufacturers add sugar or other sweeteners to improve the taste of reduced-fat foods—sometimes adding enough to create a higher-calorie food than it was before the fat was removed! Oftentimes you’ll be better off going with the full-fat, unaltered version.

Another example of pseudo-healthy foods is the countless energy and fiber bars. These bars oftentimes have as much sugar as a candy bar and, unless you plan on running a marathon or enduring some other type of grueling activity shortly after, should be left alone. However, if you must choose one of these bars, the best option will be the one with the fewest ingredients. One example of a bar with a low ingredient list is the “Kind” line of bars.

Yet another instance is yogurt. Although it can be a nutritionally valuable food when it’s left alone, food companies add a lot of sugar create the yogurt that the typical consumer would like to eat. However, for someone trying to manage their weight and improve their health, the excess simple carbs can be counter-productive. When looking for yogurt, the best option is plainGreek yogurt, which typically weighs in at 120 calories and 22 grams of protein in an 8-ounce serving. To improve the taste, add low or zero-calorie sweeteners (like xylitol or stevia) and cinnamon, fruit, nuts, or ground flax seeds.

The most significant mistake that people make is worrying about the quantity of their diet before the quality. Before beginning to count calories or macronutrients, people should know that the best foods to choose are whole, unprocessed foods. Whole foods provide better satiety (feeling of fullness) than processed foods and are free of artificial ingredients that may have harmful effects on your body. When in doubt, always choose the least-processed option over the more-processed option.

That’s if for this week. If you have any comments or questions, feel free to leave one below.

You can stay connected with my fitness ideas by going here: http://www.nextphasefitness.com/blog/

Jimmie Flores - About Author:
Dr. Jimmie Flores,PhD,PMP,ITIL,SSBB,SPHR,GPHR is a seasoned organizational development and continuous improvement professional with 20 years of experience. In 2006, he founded the Flores Consulting Group, a company based in San Antonio, TX. Dr. Flores is also an expert in project management, ITIL, Six Sigma, Entrepreneurship, and Sports Officiating. Please visit our website at http://www.jmbok.com

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