Optimal health is a goal for many but is sometimes easier said than done. In this day and age there are so many diet fads and new health trends that inspire us for a moment and create shortcuts to a seemingly healthy lifestyle. However, everything that might seem good for you can actually be bad for you. Let’s take a look at some popular health beverages that are actually junk food in disguise.
- Fruit Juices
When you go to the supermarket you see a lot of juices that claim to have 100% fruit juice. That must be healthy because it comes from a fruit right? Wrong. A lot of the fruit juice is not really fruit juice. Sometimes there isn’t even any actual fruit in there, just chemicals that taste like fruit. What you’re drinking is basically just fruit-flavored sugar water. Fruit juice is like fruit, except with all the good stuff (like the fiber) taken out, only leaving you with sugar.
- Sports Drinks
Sports drinks were designed with athletes in mind. Whether you are committing to a steady workout routine or joining a local sports team to stay in shape, you might grab a sports drink every once in a while to stay hydrated. These drinks contain electrolytes (salts) and sugar, which can be useful for athletes in many cases. However, most regular people don’t need any additional salts, and they certainly have no need for liquid sugar. Although often considered “less bad” than sugary soft drinks, there really is no fundamental difference except that the sugar content is sometimes slightly lower. It is important to stay hydrated, especially around workouts, but most people will be better off sticking to plain water.
Smoothies have long been the darling of the health-food world. Although some smoothies made with simple, whole-food ingredients can be healthy, don’t get fooled into thinking anything with the name “smoothie” is good for you. Some smoothies are made with lots of added sugars, high-calorie ingredients like chocolate syrup, or even use full-fat ice cream as a base. Your best smoothie bet? Make one at home so that you know exactly what’s in it.
- Diet Sodas
The word “diet” doesn’t always equal healthy, and that’s certainly the case for diet soda. Made with artificial ingredients and flavorings, it’s not only unnatural and high in sodium, but regular diet soda drinkers have been shown to eat more calories after consuming diet cola. While the reasons aren’t fully understood, researchers suspect it’s the body’s way of making up for calories it thinks it received in the diet soda but didn’t.
Today we learned that foods that look good for us are not always the best for us. If you saw some of your favorite beverages on here remember that the fresh way is the best way! Carefully read all of your labels before consumption and look out for liquids that are high in sugars, fats and sodium.
All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.