Continued from last week...
If you rely on protein bars for the occasional meal or snack, it may be time to re-evaluate. Research shows that there are 20 grams of sugar in a Clif Builder’s Protein Bar. Many protein bars are advertised to be healthy options for diet-conscious people, but they’re usually packed with sugar and carbs. Need more proof? According to Women’s Health, a PowerBar Performance Energy Bar in Citrus Burst contains a staggering 29 grams of sugar.If your diet is already high in sugar, you may want to consider switching out your bars for raw almonds, peanuts, or seeds instead, according to Men’s Fitness. Also, always make sure to read labels first to ensure you are not buying a protein bar that is oozing with sugar and artificial ingredients.
Juice is usually thought of as a healthy, good-for-you option. However, its sugar content can be through the roof. Take grape juice, for example. Women’s Health writes that an 8-ounce glass of grape juice is packed with a whopping 36 grams of sugar! Additionally, a 10-ounce bottle of pure apple juice can have as many as 32 grams of sugar, according to Everyday Health.This goes for juice that is labeled as 100 per cent natural juice in addition to those that are labeled as only containing natural sugars. It always pays to read the label, but you should anticipate juice usually being extraordinarily high in sugar. The worst part? Juice is not filling, and it certainly would not curb your hunger. Rather than reaching for juice, experts have recommended choosing fresh fruit instead. Yes, it will have sugar, but it also has filling fiber, making it a more satisfying choice.
Just because it has the word ‘tea’ in its title does not mean it is good for you. Many people reach for a bottle of iced tea when they are thirsty – after all, it is a cool, refreshing drink that is often deemed as a healthy food. The next time you reach for a bottle of sweet tea, though, take a moment to look at its label. You will probably have to do a double take when you see the sugar content. Experts believe that drinking one 20-ounce bottle of Arizona Iced Tea with Lemon contains a staggering 59 grams of sugar. If that does not seem like a lot, think about it like this: You could eat two normal-size chocolate bars for 54 grams of sugar. Your best best here is to forgo the iced tea and stick to good old-fashioned water. If you need a hint of flavor, try soaking some lemon or lime slices in a pitcher of water overnight for a taste of citrus.
Dried fruit has its advantages. It’s high in fiber, vitamins, and minerals, offering plenty of overall health benefits. However, indulging in too much dried fruit can cause a sugar overload. According to Everyday Health, just five to six pitted dates can contain 32 grams of sugar.This is not something you need to give up entirely. Instead, make sure you monitor how much you are eating, and stop after a few pieces of dried fruit. Avoid dried pineapple, banana chips, cranberries, and watermelon, experts have warned. Dried pineapple is usually coated in refined sugar, while banana chips are typically deep fried and sweetened. Cranberries usually have sweeteners added, and dried watermelon contains plenty of sugar, but not very many nutrients. Instead, aim for dried apples, apricots, mangoes, cherries, figs, papayas, blueberries, and raisins, according to reports.
Frozen breakfast foods
When you think of frozen breakfast foods that include items such as sausage and cheese, you might not expect them to be high in sugar. Sodium? Yes. But sugar? No. Surprisingly, these foods are typically bursting with sugar. For example, studies show that a Jimmy Dean sausage and cheese croissant breakfast entree can contain up to 21 grams of sugar per serving.
This story was published in Newswatch Times on May 23, 2015.