When we want to lose weight or to have a more balanced and healthy diet we always add these so-called ‘healthy’ snacks to our shopping list. But in reality, these snacks are packed with calories, their packaging might be toxic, or they might not have a significant nutritional value.
Here are the top ten snacks that you thought were safe but are actually unhealthy:
1. Rice cakes – Rice cakes are considered by many the very definition of healthy snacks. However, they do come with some concerns. Rice cakes may be low in calories, but they are made of processed rice. Processed rice has a high level of carbohydrates that might spike our blood sugar levels. Furthermore, by choosing flavored rice cakes you might consume extra sugar or salt. In conclusion, munching on nutrient-void rice cakes might be as efficient as munching on Styrofoam packing peanuts.
2. Flavored yogurt – Flavored yogurt is a very popular snack that is considered safe for both children and adults. However, plain yogurt is a much healthier option than flavored yogurt, which usually has additional sugar, food coloring, additives, etc. Rather than consuming all these substances, you can buy plain yogurt and add fresh fruit and honey. You will be surprised at how delicious it will taste.
3. Trail mix – Dried fruit and nuts mixed together? That sounds like a very healthy snack, but only if you stick to a small portion size. It’s important to avoid eating a whole bag of trail mix all at once. Furthermore, many trail mix companies add chocolate chips, M&Ms, and extra salt and sugar. Make sure you read the ingredient list before buying trail mix and keep in mind that a handful can easily contain more than 300 calories. If you are trying to lose weight, try 5 of the most effective calorie-burning activities.
4. Protein bars – While there are so many different types of protein bars available on the market, most of them are unhealthy. In most cases, protein bars are filled with artificial ingredients, additives, and sugar. Unless they are organic and unsweetened, protein bars are just a marketing scheme. If a protein bar has over 200 calories or more than eight grams of sugar, you are not eating a healthy snack, you are actually eating candy.
5. Microwave popcorn – Although popcorn is not particularly unhealthy, the packaging of microwave popcorn is somewhat of a concern. The microwave popcorn bags are lined with a chemical substance called PFOA. This is the same chemical used to line non-stick pans and pots. When exposed to heat, PFOA has been shown to cause infertility and even cancers in lab animals.
6. Snacks with artificial sweeteners – If you are on a diet and are trying to avoid sugar at all costs, you are probably munching on snacks that have been artificially sweetened. Think twice before consuming artificial sweeteners because these substances inhibit the natural ability of the body to assess the calorie intake. As a result, you will probably overeat and your cravings will worsen. Instead of drinking diet coke, use it to clean these 6 things.