Reality Bites: 10 Foods That Aren’t As Healthy As You Thought

Eating healthy is good for your body and your mind, but some of the foods we think are healthy, really aren’t as great as we think. A lot of these “healthy” foods are loaded up with sugar and salt. The packaging of some of these foods can have us fooled because they advertise the good qualities of the product, while the nutritional label reveals the truth behind what’s inside.

1. Energy bars
Although these bars are delicious and a nice snack every once in a while, they are loaded with sugar. Make sure to check the ingredient list and sugar content before eating so you don’t have a sugar crash. A bar that I’ve taken a liking to that doesn’t have extra unneeded ingredients are Lara bars. They’re only made with a few ingredients, yet they still taste amazing. My personal favorite is the cashew cookie made only with cashews and dates!

2. Pre-made smoothies
Buying smoothies premade means sugar overload. A lot of smoothies may even have more calories than a cheeseburger! These sweet drinks often have added sugars or syrups in them, jacking up the calorie count. Avoid the sugar rush by making your own smoothie!

3. Granola
This seemingly healthy food is full of trans fats. The smallest portion size of granola has a high calorie count and once again, is loaded with extra sugar. While it’s a yummy snack and there are definitely unhealthier things you could be eating, it’s not the best choice. Try making your own granola or topping your morning oatmeal with some chopped almonds instead.

4. Nuts
Peanut butter is my weakness, but nuts in general are a fatty food. Two tablespoons of peanut butter is 200 calories! Nut products are delicious, but shouldn’t be part of your everyday eating habits, especially if you’re trying to lose weight. As an alternative, you can try powdered peanut butter. While you lose a bit of flavour, it has less fat and calories making it better for you! 

5. Fat free foods
It might seem like a good idea to enjoy fat-free foods. Just be wary of them, because companies tend to add more artificial sweeteners and other fillers to make up for the lost taste of the food.

6. Flavored yogurts
Flavored yogurts have fruit in them, but they also have added sugar that isn’t needed to enhance the flavor of the fruit. Some of these popular yogurts may have as much sugar as a candy bar! Instead buy plain yogurt and add fruit yourself. If it still isn’t sweet enough for you, add some honey.

7. Dried fruit
Dried fruit is combined with sugar and other preservatives to increase the shelf life. Instead of buying dried fruit, try making your own at home without any extra sugar! Another alternative is just to eat regular fruit. It’s just as yummy!

8. Instant oatmeal
Oatmeal is a great breakfast, just not the kind that’s flavored and loaded with sugar! Buy some plain oatmeal and add your own sweeteners, like honey or agave syrup. Some fruit and other yummy, healthy toppings are great options too.

9. Pretzels
Pretzels may be low in calories but they also have no nutritional value not to mention they’re high in sodium. There’s not much fiber, protein or vitamins in pretzels either so you’ll likely still feel hungry after snacking on them. If you’re really craving something salty try some pistachios or a handful of salted peanuts.

10. Pre-made salads
Salads are good, yes, but it’s the toppings and the size of the salad that make it unhealthy. At restaurants the portion sizes are usually huge, but people often eat the whole things anyway. Topping like cheese, dressings, and fried foods can contribute to a high calories and lots of fat.

Bottom line is to look at the labels and be aware of what you’re putting into your body. Sugar and fat can be hidden in a lot of foods that we would never suspect. While these things are good to indulge in every once in a while, a healthy body is a happy body!

Featured Image via: Pexels


  1. “Nut products are delicious, but shouldn’t be part of your everyday eating habits, especially if you’re trying to lose weight.”
    “If you’re really craving something salty try some pistachios or a handful of salted peanuts.”

    So which is it – nuts, or no nuts? Also, salted peanuts are just as unhealthy as pretzels in regard to health; they are processed and loaded with sodium. Unsalted, completely natural peanuts would be the option to recommend.

  2. Nice list! And I wholeheartedly agree with you. I find that most pre-made foods at the very least lack the nutritional value of freshly made food.

    I think for the majority, they see it as a time-saver more than anything else. So it’s a trade-off between convenience and value.

    Smoothies are fast and simple though and if you’re looking for more, there’s a great list of them here:

    Try them out if you have time.


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