'Healthy' Foods That Are Worse Than Candy
										Be mindful of clever marketing tactics; not all "healthy" foods may actually be good for you.

'Healthy' Foods That Are Worse Than Candy Be mindful of clever marketing tactics; not all "healthy" foods may actually be good for you.

It feels like a million different types of food get marketed as “healthy” nowadays. Many of these items have tangible lifestyle benefits and come packed with vitamins, minerals, and other positive nutrients that make a huge difference in your diet. Other foods find ways to cut down on calories, salt, sugar, and fat, offering up a more wholesome alternative to traditional versions. You might never guess that some of these foods marketed as “healthy” are actually worse for you than candy.

To figure out which foods do less nutritional good for our bodies than candy, it’s important to understand why candy is bad for you in the first place.

“Eating candy is generally considered unhealthy because it is high in sugar and calories and typically does not provide much nutritional value,” says Trista Best, MPH, RD, LD, at Balance One Supplements. “Consuming too much sugar can lead to a range of health problems, including weight gain, tooth decay, and an increased risk of certain chronic diseases, such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease.”

Eat This Not That! consulted a handful of additional experts to determine which foods that are typically marketed as “healthy” may actually do more damage than you realize. In some cases, these selections prove worse for your health than candy because of how much sugar they contain. Others manage to go beyond simple empty calories or excess sugars by including added fast or salts that you might not see in a generic chocolate bar or lollipop.

With all of this in mind, here are seven “healthy” foods that dietitians say can be worse for your health than candy—and for more healthy eating tips to help you make better eating decisions, be sure to check out The Best Sweeteners for Your Blood Sugar—Ranked!

You might never have considered that fruit could be worse for you than candy. However, dried fruit presents a variety of problems, especially when compared to something like a hard fruit candy.

“While fruit is generally considered a healthy food, dried fruit is often high in sugar and calories. It is also typically smaller in size, making it easy to eat more than you would of fresh fruit, which can contribute to weight gain,” explains Best. “Rather than turning to dried fruit in a pinch, opt for whole fruit that is just as convenient as dried fruit, like apples, bananas, and [raisins].”

Don’t feel like you need to completely ditch dried fruit. It actually ranks as one of the 7 Surprising Foods You Don’t Have To Give Up To Lose Weight, Says Dietitian—just make sure to eat it in moderation.

When you think of healthy grains, granola likely springs to mind. While many companies want you to think of this food as a wholesome alternative to other sugary breakfast cereal, many types of granola use various oils to bind the grains together that then gets sweetened with sugar.

“Granola is often marketed as a healthy option, but it can be high in sugar and unhealthy fats,” says Best. “It is important to read the label and choose granola that is lower in sugar [that is also] made with whole grains and healthy fats.”

Energy bars have found a niche among health-minded folks, partially thanks to their advertising campaigns featuring images of rockclimbers and athletes. While many believe that fit lifestyles and energy bars go hand in hand, this food has a dark nutritional underbelly. When you turn the bar over and read the nutrition information, you might be shocked to see incredibly high percentages of carbs and fat.

“Energy bars are often marketed as a healthy, convenient snack, but many varieties are high in sugar and calories,” explains Best. “It is important to choose energy bars that are made with whole grains and have a lower sugar content.”

Not every energy bar has nutrition stats worse than a chocolate bar. Knowing about The Best & Worst Energy Bars—Ranked can help you make an informed purchasing decision next time you hit the grocery store.

Cereal gets a bad nutritional rap for good reason—many versions of this breakfast staple come packed with sugar. While certain whole grain cereals might not inflict the same kind of nutritional damage, you probably don’t see them in cereal bar form. Marketed as healthy on-the-go breakfasts, some of the leading cereals have found their way into individually-packaged bar form. While the marketing for these cereal bars look pretty healthy, don’t be fooled.

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