A Terrible Ten: Know Your Faux Health Foods

Terrible Ten cover

If you’re reading this blog post, you probably understand a thing or two about proper nutrition, and you definitely know what’s up at the grocery store. No white bread or soda for you. No corn syrup or GMOs. And no junk food, ever. When you get home and start carefully unloading your canvas tote, you may just pat yourself on the back. Look at all those nutritious edibles…all the stuff you’ve been told for years is good for you: yogurt, energy bars, soy milk, whole grain cereal, agave-sweetened something or other. And yum! Amy’s frozen enchiladas.

Perhaps you should sit down for this next part. Your eco-friendly shopping tote is actually full of faux-healthy groceries. And by “faux-healthy,” we mean “not good for you.” Yogurt? Chances are high that it’s sweetened, pasteurized yogurt, complete with an astronomical sugar count and not much in the way of vitamins. Okay, fine, you say. What about these energy bars? Everyone knows those are healthy. Well, not so fast. How healthy do soy isolates, synthetic vitamins, refined grains, and “natural” food fractions really sound to you? There’s only one right answer: not healthy at all.

But let’s face it: the bar for nutrition in this country has been set dangerously low for decades. When you look around at the store and spy shopping carts piled high with Pepsi and Hot Pockets, it’s hard not to feel virtuous as you scan your tubs of Greek yogurt and your organic frozen dinners.

Still, we here at SRP believe it’s always best to know exactly what you’re putting in your cart—and your body. That’s kind of hard to do when we’ve been sold a bill of goods when it comes to certain foods many of us consider healthy (or at least healthy-ish).

But you can truly educate yourself with a short read of A Terrible Ten: Health Foods That Ain’t from author and chef Patrick Earvolino. This booklet turns conventional nutritional wisdom on its head and exposes the truth behind the top ten most fraudulent “health” foods you’ve been putting in your cart. And it makes a great read for your kids too. The next time you go shopping, they’ll know why you’re saying no to flavored sugary yogurt.

Heather Wilkinson

Heather Wilkinson is the Archives Editor for Selene River Press.

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