Millions of people swear every January they’re going to improve their health. I’ve assumed for years that achieving that goal requires paying careful attention to what we eat.
Apparently I was wrong about that. Turns out countless processed foods are actually good for you. I learned that glancing at a bunch of labels and packages recently in the cafeteria at the building where I work.
I usually bring lunch from home or skip eating lunch entirely, so it’s been years since I took a good look at what’s on the shelves. Imagine my surprise when I saw healthy offerings like this:
Whodathunkit? Swiss Miss hot chocolate is actually good for you! After all, it provides as much calcium as an 8-ounce glass milk! And if we turn that package over …
… we see the calcium comes with sugar, corn syrup (in case the sugar isn’t sweet enough), and hydrogenated coconut oil. Small price to pay for the health benefits of all that calcium.
Moving along, I found chips that contain 30% Less Fat or even 65% Less Fat than the leading Potato Chips – and as we know, anything lower in fat will make you healthy.
Here are the healthy ingredients in those Oven-Baked Lays:
Awesome. Corn oil, corn starch, sugar and soybean oil. Good thing they contain 65% less fat than regular potato chips, or I’d almost wonder if they’re good for us after all.
Of course, as the overlords at the USDA have been reminding us for years, one of the keys to better health is to eat more whole grains. I found several foods that fit that bill, such as these Veggie Wheat Thins that provide 100% WHOLE GRAIN WHEAT.
And here are the ingredients:
Wheat flour, canola oil, sugar and cornstarch. So they’re not just low in fat; the bit of fat they do contain comes from heart-healthy canola oil! Man, if we all could develop the discipline to live on foods like this, the nation’s health bill would plummet.
If you prefer breakfast foods while eating more whole grains to improve your health, Raisin Bran is a Good Source of FIBER & Made with WHOLE GRAIN.
Best of all, there are only 68 carbs in that little serving of whole-grain goodness.
Froot Loops are also good for you because, as you can see, they provide WHOLE GRAIN 14 g or more per serving.
With all that whole-grain goodness, it probably doesn’t matter that the primary ingredient is sugar. Grab the skim milk, pour it on that whole-grain cereal, and let’s get healthy!
But wait .. what if we don’t have any skim milk? No problem. Kellogg’s makes a healthy cereal bar. I know it’s healthy because Nutri and Grain are both in the name.
And as you can see, there are only 12 grams of sugar and a whopping two grams of protein in one of these nutrition-packed powerhouses.
There’s also a wee bit of fruit. And since fruit in any form is good for us, I was totally jazzed to find these Fruit Medleys, which are Made With REAL FRUIT JUICE and have Colors From Natural Sources. Boy, that’s got to be good for you.
I even found the REAL FRUIT JUICE in the list of ingredients, right after corn syrup and sugar.
Fruit juice is great, but if you want to get really healthy, you need some whole fruit. Luckily, I found these Pop-Tarts, which are Baked with Real Fruit!
Along with the real fruit that’s baked in, you can power up with some wheat flour, corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup, soybean oil, sugar, and modified food starch. The real fruit that’s baked in is listed down there in the contains less than 10% or less section … but it’s real fruit, so it’s got to be good for you.
So there you have it. Accomplishing your New Year’s goal of becoming healthier has never been easier. Just grab some Froot Loops or Pop-Tarts for breakfast, and you’ll put some real fruit or those all-important whole grains into your body. If you feel like a snack a few hours later (a near-certainty if you eat cereal or pasty for breakfast), you can grab some Wheat Thins for a dose of 100% Whole Grain Wheat. Then wash ‘em down with a yummy cup of Swiss Miss hot chocolate, and you’ll strengthen your bones with as much calcium as an 8-ouce glass of milk.
With all these healthy choices sitting on the shelves in grocery stores and cafeterias all over America, I predict the nation’s diabetes crisis will soon be nothing but a bad memory.
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