Sugar can be sneaky, lurking inside even healthy-sounding foods, from sauces to breakfast items.
If you’re watching your sugar intake, which “healthy” foods are you better off avoiding? Fox News spoke to Lauren Blake, a registered dietician at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center, and Alexandra Miller, a dietitian at Medifast, to find out which seemingly healthy foods may be hiding excess sugar:
Yogurt can be a bit of a “health halo,” Blake told Fox News. While it may appear healthy, many brands can have a lot of added sugar, especially brands of flavored yogurts. For a 6-ounce container of yogurt, look for total carbohydrates of 15 grams or less, she recommended. Another tip? Typically, vanilla and coconut flavors have less added sugars than other flavors, Blake said.
While many types of granola have whole grains and nuts, they often also have lots of added sugars and oils, Blake said. Try chopping up some nuts, and tossing them together with cinnamon and berries for an easy, healthy yogurt topping, Blake recommended. Or look for healthy granola recipes online, like Blake’s Nutty Banana Hemp Granola.
3. Granola or other health bars
Similarly, granola bars can be just as deceptive, sugar-wise, Miller told Fox News — some can even have as much sugar as a candy bar. Look for bars with 8 grams of sugar or less, she said.
4. Fresh-pressed juice
While fresh-pressed fruit juice sounds healthy, there’s no fiber in it — which means your body will absorb the sugar very quickly, Blake said. Instead, try a green juice with minimal fruit, such as a juice made from greens, cucumbers, green apples, and lemon, she suggested.
5. Packaged fruits and vegetables
Fruits and vegetables are a great choice — depending on how they’re packaged. Avoid canned fruits and vegetables, including mandarin oranges, cream of corn, and canned beets, that come packed in syrup, Miller said. And beware of items like applesauce that boast “no sugar added,” as Miller noted that they may still have fruit juice concentrates that significantly up their sugar content. Check the ingredient list to be sure.
6. Low-fat salad dressings
While low-fat salad dressings may sound healthy, they could be packing extra sugar, Blake said. When recipes take fat out, they add sugar in. Instead, she recommended looking for full-fat salad dressings with real ingredients.