There are many different foods to explore when on a weight loss journey. Many women begin the challenge of getting into better shape by changing their diets, but are doing so with foods that are not truly supporting their goals. The food industry is notorious for labeling foods as healthy, when in all actuality they are not. So it is not surprising that so many people fall victim to this false advertisement. Because of this, it is very easy to consume fake health foods pretty frequently and not even realize it. One way to avoid this predicament is to be very involved in your food selection, by understanding what is in the ingredients and reading labels thoroughly. Another tactic is to avoid harmful foods altogether, and select better options that align with a whole foods approach. To better understand what foods to avoid, check out these 8 “health foods” that are bad for weight loss.
The food industry would have you believe that flavored yogurt is a healthy option, but that is not necessarily the case. False advertisements will tell you that flavored yogurt is a good choice because it is made with real fruits and fruit juices. But they are all loaded with added sugar, and possibly contain pesticides. If you read the labels, you will find that many flavored yogurts contain refined sugar and artificial sweeteners. Opt for a plain or Greek yogurt that is organic and has between 0% to 2% fat.
Frozen Healthy Meals
Many people have fallen for this marketing scheme because the diet industry does so well as advertising frozen meals as healthy. In order to keep these meals edible, they are typically packed to the brim with artificial ingredients and preservatives. Furthermore, they usually have a high sodium content, which increases the risk for all sorts of health issues. While they may be convenient and easy, they are not worth the risks. A rule of thumb is ensuring that any frozen meal you buy has less than 250 mg of sodium, if you must eat one. But better yet, take some time to make meals at home and freeze them ahead of time. Frozen fruits and vegetables in their natural state are your only sure bet when looking for healthy frozen items.
While they are very easy to grab and go, protein bars are not as healthy as they are advertised to be. They are packed with all sorts of junk like MSG, unnatural fats, GMO soy, artificial sweeteners, and sodium. The safest store-bought bars are organic ones that are mostly fruits, nuts, and seeds and have no added sugar. Or just make your own protein bars at home.
This fad hit the fast food industry several years ago, and many people have not stopped consuming them since. Store-bought turkey burgers with lean meat are a good option, but this is not what’s being served at many fast food joints and restaurants. Lean turkey meat is expensive, so many establishments use the fattier meat, which typically contains up to 850 calories per turkey patty.
100 Calorie Snacks
Yes, it may seem like a good option to have a 100 calorie snack pack, but have you ever been able to just eat one? Most likely not, and the food industry is banking on that. They are not filling, so you typically need to eat several to feel satisfied. And they are still full of harmful ingredients.
This one is a hard truth to accept, but typical granola is not what you think it is. The ingredients of granola are high in calories, like the dried fruit and nuts. And the whole mix will usually contain high fat, carbs and sugar, as well as unhealthy oils. What makes it worse is that the serving sizes are small, so you will likely consume more than the label suggests making it a healthy snack.
Fat-Free Salad Dressing
Salad dressings that are marketed as fat free may cut down on the fat, but check out the label and see what is included in its place. Typically, the ingredient list reads on forever, and includes processed, sugar ingredients. Instead, try out a homemade dressing with a healthy oil like flaxseed or olive oil as the base. You can include things like apple cider vinegar, mustard, lemon juice and herbs for taste.
Healthy cereals are a pitfall that many of us fall victim to, because the marketing is so clever. But this is another fake health food option that is full of harmful ingredients that are heavily processed. It’s also another food that seems impossible to stick to the suggested serving size, due to the addictive nature of the sugary ingredients. There aren’t many truly healthy versions of boxed cereals, meaning you are better off choosing other snack or light meal alternatives altogether. Try fruits and veggies, or a warm bowl of oatmeal or quinoa topped with nuts.