6 Foods Marketed to Americans as Healthy That Are Really big Steaming Piles ... of Sugar

It is hard enough to eat healthy in America.  But it is even harder when big companies, who know the current social trends, play on these themes and begin marketing the same old sugary crap to us with fancy new labels.  

Recently the trend has been moving towards higher protein diets and lowering the number of carbohydrates you take in.  So leave it to our good friends at General Mills to come out with a new version of a classic Cheerios and call it "Cheerios Protein".  Now this may look like a great option.  I mean who doesn't want to consume more protein for breakfast?  I sure do.  However, once you read the label, you'll find out that Cheerios Protein only contains a measly 7g of protein while loading us up with a WHOPPING 17G of SUGAR!  


To put that in perspective, a serving of Lucky Charms only has 10g of sugar.  Now I limit the amount of sugary cereal my kids consume, however, you might not think twice about feeding your kids something labeled as "Cheerios Protein" simply due to marketing and packaging when, in reality, it is much worse for them than the marshmallow-laden Lucky Charms.

6 Foods Marketed as Healthy That are Really just the same as eating a few teaspoons of sugar

1.  Chobani Fruit On The Bottom Greek Yogurt 

 In the past few years it has been drilled into our heads that greek yogurt is better for us than traditional yogurt.  No one seems to know why other than the fact that marketing has told us so.  We also want to have "healthy" and "natural" ingredients.  However, just because something is said to be all natural doesn't mean it is good for you.  Chobani Fruit On The Bottom Greek Yogurt can contain up to 18g of sugar per single serving cup!  

By tossing one of these in front of your child with a glass of juice and some toast with strawberry jam on it, you could be saying "here honey, eat 40g of sugar for breakfast".

2.  Meal Replacement Bars

There is a good chance that your protein or meal replacement bar is about as nutritious as a candy bar.  Take, for instance, the new Gatorade protein bar.  Sure it has 20g of protein (which is a good amount), however, I'm not convinced that it outweighs the whopping 30g of sugar and fat content you'll find in this bar.  Many other meal replacement bars share the same nutritional profile and could be harming you more then helping.

3.  Flavored Instant Oatmeal

Maple Brown Sugar Instant Oatmeal contains 12g of sugar and 32g of carbohydrates. You might as well pour your kids a giant bowl of Lucky Charms - it's about as nutritious as that flavored oatmeal!

4.  Sports Drinks

Talk about marketing at its finest.   Sports drinks are nothing more than sugar water marketed as "super recovery and hydration fuel".  Just one drink can pack five teaspoons of sugar.  Skip the sugar altogether by quenching your thirst with water next time.

5.  Barbecue Sauce

While barbecue sauce is not really marketed as a healthy condiment, it is not perceived as unhealthy either.  However, most BBQ sauces can contain over 15g of sugar in only 2 tablespoons!  BBQ ribs, BBQ chicken and anything dipped in bbq sauce then becomes a sugar bomb - and you might not have even known it!

6.  Granola

Granola is typically marketed as a low fat, healthy breakfast/snack options, however, most granola is usually loaded with calories and sugar.  The main ingredient in granola is oats. Plain oatmeal is a well-balanced food containing carbs, protein, fat and fiber. However, the oats in granola have been married with sugars, honey, nuts and/or other added sweeteners, which increases the amount of sugar and calories and makes the oatmeal a horrible choice.

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