These supposedly healthy foods are actually pretty terrible for you

Seriously...

Thought you knew exactly what was good for you and not? Think again. Here are the seemingly healthy foods which actually aren’t all that healthy…

Popcorn

Microwave popcorn, that is. A lot of microwave popcorn have high levels of sodium and some even have the chemical diacetyl (which gives it that buttery taste) making it less of the light snack most people assume it is.

Granola

This breakfast cereal seems so helpful, what with all its oats, nuts and dried fruit but one bowl can easily have more than 500 calories (before the milk) and can have a lot of sugar in it. Also, dried fruit can have sulphur and sugar added to preserve them longer so eat fresh when you can.

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Orange juice

OJ is disappearing from the American breakfast because people have cottoned on to just how much sugar is packed into it. If you’re actually looking for vitamins from fruit, you’re way better off eating the actual fruit than drinking its juice. A traditional, from concentrate glass of orange juice contains 153 calories, 34 grams of carbohydrates, 27 grams of sugar, and 2.4 grams of protein. That’s the same amount of carbohydrates and almost as much sugar as a bag of M&Ms… This is probably why sales of OJ are down 13%.

Salad dressing

If you actually look at the ingredient list of salad dressings, you’ll notice some are super long with preservatives, additives, sodium and sugar. Replace it with extra virgin olive oil and some balsamic vinegar instead.

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Smoothies

Although some smoothies are just full of fruity goodness, others can include a lot of sugary ingredients like syrups, full-fat ice-cream and sugars so make sure you read the menu clearly.

Vegetable oils

Processed vegetable oils, including canola oil, rapeseed oil and soybean oil, have been linked with lowering cholesterol but because they contain fatty acids in them that can be toxic when heated up, it can increase your risk of heart disease and cancer so coconut oil and olive oil are your best bet. And although margarine has less trans fat than it used to, it’s still loaded with these same fatty acids so it’s best to stick to natural butter.

Agave Nectar

Given how bad a rep sugar has been getting recently, it’s no wonder that people have been looking towards natural sweeteners as an alternative. Agave nectar, though, has around 70-90% fructose (whereas sugar has 50%).

Brown rice syrup

Similarly, rice syrup has a glycemic index of 98 so your blood sugar level will spike real fast.

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Canned soups

Most canned soups have more than 400 milligrams of sodium in them which can leave you feeling bloated, sluggish and with high blood pressure. Thumbs down.

Diet drinks

Diet doesn’t mean it’s healthy as they are often laden with artificial ingredients like flavourings and sweeteners. Also, there’s an argument that you’re more likely to eat more after consuming a diet drink than a ‘full fat’ drink.

Low-fat peanut butter

Peanuts are full of monounsaturated fat which is actually good for you – so just go for the most natural version you can find, as reduced-fat jars often add in sugar to replace the fat.

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