‘Healthy’ Food Frauds

ShreelParikh.FoodWhether you want to call it fake or fraud, it’s never fun being mislead by a health food hoax. We know that promises of low calories, reduced fat and all natural ingredients can confuse even the savviest shopper. At Valley, we understand the importance of eating healthy, so we compiled a list of common healthy foods that aren’t:

Greek Yogurt

It seems that everyone is going Greek these days- when it comes to yogurt, that is. With phrases like “Only natural ingredients” and “Non-fat” scrawled across the top, it’s hard not to think of a Greek yogurt like Chobani as a guilt-free snack. Greek yogurt is often praised for having more protein than regular yogurt, but you have to stick to plain in order for it to be a healthy snack. Although fruit-flavored Chobani may taste delicious, it contains a lot of sugar and should be considered more of a dessert.

Sports Drinks

Sports drinks like Gatorade can be a great choice if you’re putting in a hard workout or are getting ready to play a big game. It’s not so great if you’re simply sitting in your dorm room or walking to class. You may think this drink is doing your body a favor, but in reality it’s just giving it an unwelcome dose of sugar, high fructose corn syrup and artificial colors. Sports drinks can also do some damage on that pearly white smile.


With its whole grains, seeds and nuts, granola can boast health benefits. So what makes it bad? Granola comes with a fair share of calories, fat and sugar- especially with common additions.  Think again before you choose to add sugar-coated fruit, chocolate chips, or yogurt to your granola. We generally connect granola with being healthy, but ironically it’s one of the least healthy ways to start our day. It can still be a healthy snack choice as long as you keep portion size in mind and make sure to read labels carefully.

Wheat Bread

It seems that wheat breads can be found in almost every product in grocery stores nowadays. Lucky Charms even come in a whole wheat version, but we’re sorry to say that doesn’t make them healthy. Terms like multi-grain and wheat sound like the healthy choice, but these labels are typically made from refined grains. You want to make sure that the label says “100 percent whole grain,” otherwise health benefits are lost.

Fruit Smoothies

Let’s be honest- who doesn’t love indulging with a yummy fruit smoothie from Irving’s? As summer comes around, fruit smoothies may seem like the healthy way to stay cool and beat the heat. If you’re not careful though, fruit smoothies can pack as many calories as a milkshake. Beverages are less filling per calorie than solid foods and smoothies often contain a ton of added sugars. Lesson learned: just because there’s fruit in something that doesn’t mean it’s healthy.

Photo by Shreel Parikh

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