Foods You Think Are Healthy – But Aren’t

Subway has been under fire recently for having a plastic chemical, azodicarbonamide, in its bread.  This chemical is used in synthetic leather, and in such things like yoga mats!  It sparked a thought on how many foods are considered ‘healthy’, but when you really dig into it, they are NOT.  Here are a few common ones for me:

1) Clif Bars

I feel like I could do an entire post on snack bars that call themselves ‘healthy’ or ‘protein’ bars.  It makes me mad, as I get excited that they will be a good snack option, only to read the label/contents and discover it was purely a marketing ploy.  Clif bars are no different.

Clif Bars have actually cleaned up their ingredients in the past couple of years, however the #1 ingredient (which by definition means the highest content ingredient in the food) is brown rice syrup.  AKA sugar.  There are 22g of sugar in this bar, which is actually only 1g less than a Coffee Crisp chocolate bar.

2) Subway

Azodicarbonamide aside, Subway is not as healthy as it’s touted as for a few reasons.  Firstly, it’s full of a lot of processed foods: the bread, the lunch meat, and the sauces.  Interestingly, researchers from the University of California did a study on which was healthier: Subway or McDonalds.  I think most people would inherently assume Subway is significantly better.  Turns out this is wrong.  The average number of calories consumed, and the average sodium content were both higher from meals at Subway.

3) “Multi-grain”

Multigrain simply means more than one type of grain is used.  It is still refined, which means it’s actually lost most of it’s nutritional benefits.  For the grain to have the maximum nutritional content, all 3 parts of the grain must be there: bran, endosperm, and germ.  Not that I’m a bread advocate, but if I had to choose one, it would be the “Ezekiel” bread as it’s sprouted, so the maximum nutrition content.

4) Gatorade/Powerade/Vitamin Water

In my St Patty’s Smoothie, I mentioned my dislike of Gatorade/Powerade type drinks as a hangover helper.  Whether it’s too help with your hangover, or to “re-hydrate” after exercise, don’t do it!  Let me explain why.  First of all, unless you’re REALLY working out hard, chances that you need the excess calories from the drink are slim.  (This is assuming you’re eating a good meal after working out.)  Secondly, the ingredients in these drinks are awful.  Most of them have colouring, and are actually pure PROCESSED sugar.  If you do need to replenish your electrolytes from intense exercise, my recommendation would be 100% coconut water.

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