The food industry is a billion dollar industry and you better believe they are banking on your healthy eating ambitions. Using buzz words like “natural”, “made with whole grains”, and “low calorie” are just a few of the ways they mislead consumers into thinking that what you are eating is healthy. Be aware of these deceptive marketing tactics by knowing what you're looking for on the back of the ingredient labels. Here are a few snacks that may be wrecking your healthy ambitions:
Granola: While many granola mixes are high in fiber, they are also usually high in sugar, fat, and calories with little vitamins and minerals. In fact, the average store-bought granola mix packs 400 calories in a cup.
The Alternative: Make your own granola and control what goes into your mix. Here's one of our favorite simple granola recipes!
Vegetable Chips: The store bought vegetable chips may seem like a good alternative to Doritos, but don’t give them too much credit. They are still loaded with calories and fat, and take a look at the main ingredient - potato starch. Unfortunately, this does not count as a vegetable serving.
The Alternative: Yes, again. Make your own. Not only can you ensure healthy ingredients, you can choose your favorite vegetables to use. Try Skinny Baked Zucchini Chips, you'll be pleasantly surprised if you think you're a veggie chip hater! And if you're not a zucchini lover, try our Skinny Baked Sweet Potato Chips.
3. Turkey Dogs: It may seem like a better option than beef hot dogs, but often turkey dogs actually contain more fat, sodium, and nitrates than regular dogs.
The Alternative: Opt for low-sodium, nitrate-free turkey breast instead.
4. Muffins: After you order that Skinny Latte, you may be tempted to grab a muffin to munch on. While your intentions may be good, many store-bought muffins are loaded with sugar, fat, and calories.
The Alternative: Make ahead and individually wrap your own skinny muffins for on-the-go portability.
5. Yogurt: The yogurt diet commercials recently spotted on TV always make me laugh. While New York Cheesecake and Key Lime Pie yogurt flavors may seem like great dessert alternatives, be aware. These are still desserts! Even many regular fruit-flavored yogurts are high in sugar making them okay for splurges, but don’t consider them healthy snacks. A Yoplait Original Mixed Berry Yogurt serving contains a whopping 26 grams of sugar!
The Alternative: Opt for plain yogurts and then sweeten them yourself with your favorite chopped fruit.
6. Protein Bars: Pre-packaged protein bars can often be misleading as healthy snacks. The truth is that many protein bars are loaded with sugar and contain as much fat and saturated fat as a Snickers bar. Just because some protein powder is included in the ingredients does not make this a wise choice.
The Alternative: Make your own protein snacks, like these delicious Skinny Mom Peanut Butter + Fruit Protein Balls.
For more skinny snacks options, check out our 30 favorite here!