Deceivingly Dangerous Foods

by Katherine Simon, Contributing Writer

If you are a sushi-aholic like me, this article will upset you as much as it hurt to write. Picking up a delicious crunchy roll for dinner may seem like the quick and healthy way to go, but don’t be deceived. Sushi, along with many other deceivingly dangerous dishes, contains tons of hidden fats and sugars. This is especially true if the dish is fried fish and cream cheese, drenched in soy sauce. Opt for sushi that’s not coated in rice, one with mainly fish and veggies.

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Other sneaky snacks that have us thinking we’re being healthy:

1)  Peanut Butter

Although peanuts themselves are full of heart-healthy fats, peanut butter is full of saturated fat and often times the same kind of sugars you find in frostings on cookies and cakes. It would be best to stick to natural peanut butters in order to avoid the hydrogenated oils in regular Skippy or JiF. Moderation is also key. Don’t be the one to just sit in front of your desk with a jar of peanut butter and a spoon (not speaking from experience, of course).

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2) Energy Bars

These are not the on-the-go snack to be reaching for. These guys are filled with high fructose corn syrup and crammed full of calories. Most energy bars could substitute a whole meal with the amount of calories they have. These bars are full of proteins to keep you full. That being said, if you are planning a serious hike or intense workout, they aren’t terrible.

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3) Pre-Made Smoothies

If you decide to get a smoothie at a coffee shop or smoothie chain, make sure it’s not completely made up of sugary juice cocktail mix or simple sugars and syrups. Most of these seemingly healthy smoothies are full of added sugars and could potentially be highly caloric. The best option would be to continue making homemade smoothies where you know what’s going in the blender.

4) Trail Mix

This treat is also high in calories. This seems especially true if you tend to go for the ones loaded with coated candies and chocolate covered raisins. Even though often times the nuts in the mix provide a good amount of protein, a handful of trail mix is full of sugar, trans fats, and refined carbohydrates.

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5) Frozen Yogurt

Frozen yogurt can be a great treat if consumed in moderation. It contains much less saturated fat then ice cream, but loading it up with chocolate toppings and sugary candies make it just as bad as its creamy counterparts. As well, frozen yogurt doesn’t contain that many less calories than ice cream. Although it might not be as fun as throwing brownie bites and caramel sauce on top, a small dish of frozen yogurt with a spoonful of fruit on top would be the best route to go.

6) Granola

Granola is loaded with trans fat and sugar. A little goes a long way in the calorie department. Often times, the amount of fiber in granola doesn’t even compare to the carbs and calories. That being said, be sure to avoid sugary granola breakfast cereals.

7) Fruit-on-the-Bottom Greek Yogurt

Greek yogurt itself is proven to have many health benefits. When the yogurt is full of sugary fruit preserves, however, the calorie count rises and nutritional value falls. Even if the label reads “Non-Fat Yogurt”, greek yogurt with fruit mix-ins often times contain just as much fat as full-fat yogurts.

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