The most important meal of the day
Keeping your family’s diet rich with nutrients can be difficult when many ‘healthy’ options are quite far from healthy in reality. In this article we uncover some unknown secrets about a few foods that are commonly seen to be healthy breakfast options:
1 – Muesli:
Although Muesli seems to be a much healthier alternative to sugar-coated cereal and fatty fried breakfasts, often muesli has a high fat content and a large amount of added sugar.
If you enjoy muesli and don’t want to swap it for something else, rather make your own with oats, sunflower seeds, a small amount of dried fruit and nuts.
2 – Store Bought Smoothies:
Pre-made smoothies can sometimes have more calories than a cheeseburger because of the high portions of fruits, simple sugars and syrups. We tend to overdo it when we drink these and buy larger portions because of their plant-based nutrients. A quick tip is to make these at home and add more vegetables than fruit.
3 – Bran Muffins:
Believe it or not, the average bran muffins sold at a store contains more fat and sugar than a donut so they are not a good idea for breakfast. If a store-bought muffin is a must, cut it in half and save the rest for later.
To control the ingredients and save some money, get baking! We’ve found a delicious healthy muffin recipe: https://www.stork.co.za/recipes/overnight-bran-and-date-muffins/. For portion control, don’t overfill your muffin pan.
If you are a bran-lover but want to lay off the muffins, have a bran cereal with low-fat milk and fresh fruit instead.
4 – Light Yoghurts:
Removing fat from yoghurt makes it taste bland so manufacturers generally add a lot of sugar into the product in order to make it tastier; in the process making it less healthy. The high levels of sugar make low-fat yoghurt less healthy than full cream yoghurt. Light yoghurts often include artificial colourants and preservatives. Rather buy plain yoghurt and flavour it with honey or fruit.
5 – Energy bars:
Energy bars are designed to be meal replacements for active on-the-go people not a snack to have in between meals. They contain as many calories as a big lunch. Even though they have all these calories they’re usually quite small and are not filling. Although they are supposed to contain many nutrients, processing them strips them of most nutrients. Just like most of these false healthy foods, sugar is added to make them tastier.
A great alternative to energy bars is a banana, not only are they fulling, easy to eat/prepare but they are also low in calories and have no fat, no sodium, and no cholesterol. They contain vitamin C, potassium, fiber, and vitamin B6.
6 – Peanut butter:
Nuts are well known for their healthy fats and have been shown to help boost heart health and help weight loss however, peanut butter manufacturers often take out good fat, replacing it with sugar and saturated fat. It’s best to eat raw peanuts with some salt for flavouring.
We hope next time you’re at the shops you will be better informed to make smarter and healthier choices.