The following are labels that are often thought to be healthy, however are not necessarily.
Healthy Myth #1: Low Fat
Yogurt, cereals and many other products can be low or reduced fat, or even fat-free, and many people assume this is healthier. There are three reasons this is not necessarily true. 1) Preservatives, chemicals and sugars often are added in order to make it fat free and palatable, and are actually much worse for you than the extra fat. 2) Fat is an important part of your diet, just be sure they are healthy fats in moderation such as olive oil, nuts, and avocado. 3) Regular fat dairy products have been shown to keep you fuller longer, and may have a favourable influence on cholesterol and diabetes risk. But remember – everything in moderation.
Healthy Myth #2: Multi-grain
Multi-grain means simply that: more than one grain. This does not mean whole grain, nor does it mean healthy. Which brings us to our next myth…
Healthy Myth #3: Gluten free
Processed gluten-free products often have a lot of added sugars and preservatives along with many other ingredients I can’t pronounce. Overall less gluten is healthier, but breads and pasta should be replaced with naturally gluten free grains such as brown rice and quinoa, as well as fruits and vegetables.
Healthy Myth #4: Sugar-free
Sugar-free usually means “Artificial-sweetener-full” in the form of aspartame and sucralose. Artificial sweeteners have numerous negative effects, and have actually been shown to alter metabolism and increase risk of obesity and type 2 diabetes. ALL artificial sweeteners are a no-go!
I hope this helps you navigate the grocery store a little bit better. We'll dive deeper into some of this in upcoming posts. Always read the labels, and keep these tips in mind on your next grocery store visit!