Healthy Snacks Debunked
By Nutritional Weight & Wellness Staff
August 28, 2015
Let’s set the scene. You’re shopping at your local co-op or grocery store, slightly hungry (mistake #1) and you come across the natural aisle shelves stocked with snacks. You’re thinking “junk food?” and then “But it says organic it can’t be that bad...right?” Well, it’s complicated...to help you debunk these “healthy snack” options, JoAnn, a Nutritional Weight & Wellness nutritionist, took a stroll through the grocery store, and here’s what she suggests.
Annie’s Homegrown Cheddar Bunnies®
These snacks have better ingredients than Goldfish® or chips, but are still processed carbohydrates that will turn to sugar in your blood stream. With 19 grams of carbohydrates in 1 serving (51 small bunnies), that will turn into 5 tsp. of sugar in your blood stream. Besides, who actually counts out 51 bunnies? These Bunnies are a popular snack parents give to children, but a better alternative could be cut up soft fruit with pieces of meat or cheese and avocado or a few olives.
Clif Kid ZFruit Rope®
The ingredients are okay, with organic fruit puree and juice, but this will also turn to sugar. One rope provides 17 grams of carbs, and will turn into over 4 tsp. of sugar. Which, if this was a lunchbox snack, would negatively affect your kiddo’s concentration for the rest of the school day. A roll-up made with deli meat, cream cheese and pickle would be a more balanced option.
This bedtime snack is just another source of sugar. Corn, whether popped or not, will turn to sugar in your body. What do farmers feed cattle to fatten them up? Corn. And it will do the same to you. Instead go for full-fat cream over your favorite berries.
Macadamia Nut Clif Bar®
We don’t recommend soy for a host of reasons, and this bar contains both soy protein and soy crisps. A protein bar with whey protein is superior in quality. Brown rice syrup and cane syrup, additional ingredients in this bar, also turn to sugar. Forty-one grams of carbs turns into 10 tsp. of sugar! Look for a protein bar with 15-20 grams of carbs, 10 grams of protein and 10 grams of fat ideally. Another option is a nitrate-free beef stick, a small piece of fruit and some almonds.
Mary’s Gone Crackers®
This is a cracker we often recommend at Nutritional Weight & Wellness. The ingredients are good, and it is gluten free. A serving size is 10-13 crackers. Use caution with the portion size; it would be easy to eat too many. Often gluten free products still contain a lot of carbohydrates, so look for 15-20 grams of carbs per serving. Balance out the carbs with some tuna salad on top of the crackers.
Kashi Go Lean Cereal®
While this isn’t a necessarily a snack, many people are confused about its health benefits. This cereal contains soy, which again, we don’t recommend for optimal health. Another ingredient is cane syrup, which is sugar. Forty grams of carbs equals 10 tsp. of sugar in a 1¼ cup serving. A much better alternative is eggs or nitrate-free sausage for breakfast, paired with some broccoli (or whatever veggies you like!) sautéed in butter.
We have many more grocery store snacks to debunk, so stay tuned! And, please let us know what products you’ve always been curious about.
If you’re curious about any of our responses, check out our Weight & Wellness Class Series to learn more. Snack on!