I can’t believe it’s already Wednesday! I guess since we were gone until Monday afternoon, it seems like it’s only Tuesday.
This morning I had planned to go to spin at the gym but the weather was nice and cool so we went for a run instead.
There was a very pleasant breeze and it was slightly overcast which was great compared to the HOT weather we’ve been having around here. Someone was thrilled to get outside after being cooped up in the stroller/car/and house yesterday.
We ran a nice mellow 5 miles stopping at the park for a little play time.
After our run we came home and I finally got a chance to sit down to catch up on emails, blogs and a few articles I’ve been wanting to read. One article I found interesting was titled “8 “healthy” snacks that are more fattening than a twinkie.” I wasn’t too surprised by the foods that were listed and was happy to see that I eat a lot of the foods that were given as an alternative to eat instead.
- Spaghetti Sauce – It’s not a huge surprise that this item is on the list because it’s a well-known fact that it’s loaded with sugar. “1/2 cup of Prego Fresh Mushroom Italian Sauce has 11 grams of sugar – the same amount that’s in a glazed Krispy Kreme donut.” Source
What to eat when you want some pasta with red sauce? Just make your own quick sauce! I do this often with a can of diced tomatoes (opt for low sodium when possible), some fresh garlic, onions, and seasonings. To thicken it up if you’d like, just add a tbsp of tomato paste. Just as good as a jar and you control the sugar/sodium content 🙂
2. Yogurt – Again, no surprise here folks. Just look at the back of a Yoplait container and you can see why it’s listed as a “healthy” fattening food. They advertise as a healthy option but some containers are loaded with over 29 grams of sugar!
My go to yogurt in our house is Fage greek plain non fat yogurt. Even though the full fat in greek yogurt is good for you, I opt for this one because it’s the only one they carry at Costco. Some of you might say, “it tastes like sour cream!” It is plain with no sugars added but you can add lots of different flavors into it. I sweeten mine up with a little stevia or agave. For the Love Nugget I will mix in some sugar-free jam, pureed berries or applesauce. One of our favorite snacks is a yogurt/peanut butter dip with apples. It’s deliciously creamy and by mixing yogurt with a smaller serving of nut butter, you are cutting down on the calories 🙂
3. Smoothies – Not the ones you make at home, but those yummy dessert tasting smoothies you get at Jamba Juice or other Smoothie shops. Some are filled with added sugars as well as ice cream. Luckily Jamba Juice lists their ingredients as well as their calories but be sure to check out the other nutrition facts as well. “Some smoothies amount to 540 calories… and anywhere from 40 to 110 grams of sugar.” Source
Instead, make your smoothies at home.
Here you can control the amount of fruit and sugar that are added to your smoothies. You can even toss in some greens (which you know I love to do), and they still taste just as good if not better! A few of my favorites are my Chocolate Peanut Butter Green Smoothie, Chocolate Covered Cherry Green Smoothie, and my go to Protein Berry Green Smoothie.
4. Sports Drinks – Surprised? Probably not. It’s becoming pretty well-known that unless you are a big athlete, sports drinks are not really that great for you. “Sports drinks like Gatorade have 28 grams of sugar per 20 oz. bottle.” Yikes! The average woman is only supposed to get around 40 grams of sugar total per day. “There is a place for sports drinks but it’s for those who are extremely active and have sweated out their nutrients.” Source
Luckily for those of us athletes that don’t really want to drink all that added sugar, brands like Gatorade, Propel, Poweraid and Vitamin water have come up with reduced sugar beverages that still contain the electrolytes you need to refuel. There’s also Smart Water and Coconut water which are my favorite go to beverages after a big sweaty workout.
5. Granola Bars – As easy as they are to grab on the go, these babies are loaded with added sugar and extra ingredients. “Essentially, granola bars are really healthy-sounding cookies,” says Ansel. An Apricot-flavored Clif Bar has 24 g of sugar; a Twinkie would’ve tasted better and has 4 grams less sugar.”
I read once that as a woman we shouldn’t be eating granola bars/protein bars for a snack that are over 200 calories. The main things I look for if I’m going to purchase a granola bar or protein bar are the amount of calories, the sugar content, protein and the amount of ingredients. I opt for bars like Kind bar or Lara bar if I’m in need of a quick snack because they have very minimal and natural ingredients. However, it’s surprisingly easy to make your own bars at home if you’re looking for something more substantial.
6. Cereal – Check the ingredients people! Just because it’s advertised to help you lose weight, doesn’t mean it will. Kellogg’s Special K Fruit and Yogurt has 17 grams of sugar in 1 1/4 cup. What does sugar turn into??? Fat! “When cereals are made from whole grains, we assume they’re made with other wholesome ingredients, too, but that’s not always the case,” says Ansel.
We very rarely have sugar in our house. The hubby loves Honey Nut Cheerios but after we cut back on processed foods and he realized how much sugar was in a bowl full, he’s removed it from his diet.
7. Frozen Yogurt – Huge :-(…. Yes, I knew this but still 😦 Why? “You walk in and pour as much yogurt as you want into a cup, before you pile on the toppings,” says Dubost. “By the time you’re at the register, you’re up to the caloric value of a meal.” Source
Well, I guess I’m doing okay in that I always opt for the smallest container and shoot to stay under a 1 cup serving if not a 1/2 a cup. Although I do tend to get just a small amount of my favorite chocolates 🙂
We have gotten better at saying no to making a trip to the frozen yogurt shop and instead whipping up our own mock frozen yogurt treats at home.
8. Reduced Fat Peanut Butter – People often think they shouldn’t eat peanut butter because it’s high in fat and calories. But…. it’s a good fat so eat away (in moderation of coarse). Here’s why reduced fat isn’t the best option; “When manufacturers remove the fat from their foods, they need to put something else in to pump up the flavor — and that something is often sugar,” says Ansel. “Many brands have up to a teaspoon of sugar in a 2 tablespoon serving.” Skippy’s 25 percent less fat option has 4 g of sugar in 2 tablespoons — that’s double the amount of the original, “fattening” variety. So, while we admit this is less than the amount of sugar in a Twinkie, it’s still astounding. Source
I was pleasantly surprised to see the recommended food to eat instead was Almond Butter! It’s no secret I LOVE almond butter! I have to try to limit myself to keep in the “moderation” category of getting in my healthy fats through nut butters. I always make sure to buy the all natural kinds with just almonds or just peanuts to avoid any added sugars. Although every once in a while I’ll splurge on a Maple Almond Butter. So good!
Off to go prepare some lunch for the Love Nugget and myself. I’m hoping the hubby gets home early enough for me to go try out a new boot camp 🙂
QUESTION – What healthy snacks do you enjoy in place of these “fatty” snacks?