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Diet Watch: Not-So-Healthy Food That You Must Avoid

Shopping for healthy foods is supposed to be easy, but can turn into a nightmare. Every brand touts up the nutrition quotient in its product, so customers have to navigate the aisles like a pro to get the stuff that's actually healthy for you. On most occasions you will find unhealthy food simply masquerading as healthy by presenting buzz words on the label. Here are some of those not-so-healthy 'health' foods that you would do well to steer clear of.

Flavoured Yogurt
Frozen Yogurt
Everyone loves flavoured yogurt because it tastes so good, and often has labels such as non-fat or probiotic on the front. But if you buy plain yogurt instead of flavoured yogurt, you will immediately notice that the sugar content is far lower in the former. That's because flavoured yogurt is often packed with sugar, enough to rival a candy bar in sugar content. Avoid them at all costs. Add a moderate amount of fruits, dry fruits or nuts at home to enhance the taste, instead.
Protein Bars
Enery Bar
You will see them branded as ‘gluten free,’ ‘organic,’ ‘dairy free,’ ‘low fat,’ and ‘natural,’ but what they don't tell you is it's jam-packed with processed and refined sugar. The buzzwords are taking advantage of the fact that you want to eat healthier. Avoid any and all store-bought protein bars as they are usually packed full of sugar and devoid of nutrition. Make your own; it's super simple and a great recipe is right here.
Packaged Fruit Juices
Packaged Fruit Juice
Yes, a cold-pressed fruit juice is great, but the packaged kind often are likely to have high sugar content. It's easy to mask the taste of regular juice to make it taste like cold-pressed. Choose whole fruits over juice as they not only hydrate you, but also provide benefits through pulp and fibers. Sometimes, even a cold-press can end up destroying the beneficial fiber, vitamins and minerals.
Powdered Peanut Butter
Peanut Butter
For one, powdered peanut butter is not the real deal. And secondly, it's definitely not better for your body. Be wary of any powdered peanut butter even if it advertises fewer calories and less fat than the real deal because it doesn't have any of the natural healthy fats that make peanut butter healthy in the first place. It's also likely to contain extra additives that won't exactly help you in terms of nutrition.
Energy Drinks
Energy Drink
We don't have to stress again that many of the products that are advertised as healthy are in fact full of sugar even if some of them may have electrolytes (potassium and sodium, for example) that are essential for intense workouts or endurance training. Many sports drinks contain up to 125 calories for a 400ml bottle. So you will have to work extra hard to burn them off. The simple truth is that plain water or a calorie-free beverage is enough to keep you hydrated. Try a cup of coffee before your workout for that booster shot.
Whole-Wheat Bread
Brown Bread
The controversy around carcinogens in Indian bread is raging on, but even so called Whole Wheat Bread is full of additives and sadly, often just a colored version of plain white bread. Some wheat bread is known to cause extreme blood sugar elevations, and high insulin response. It aids inflammation of the muscles and fat accumulation. Some studies suggest that home-made bread, especially the kind involving long fermentation period, produces less bloating and gas.
Even as more and more people are becoming aware of health foods and trends, brands are looking to make an easy buck by latching on to buzzwords. It's become increasingly important to be informed about what is actually healthy and not.
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