Transformers: Unhealthy Foods In Disguise. Top 10 Healthy Foods That Are Not Really Healthy

You may have heard the expression, “you are what you eat.” Well, in regards to weight loss, ‘what you eat’ is almost as important as ‘how much you eat’. Eating a healthy, well balanced nutrition plan will help you lose weight and keep it off.
Most of you think you know which foods are healthy and which ones are not. Below is a list of the top ten foods that people mistakenly believe are healthy.


“All I eat are salads and I still can’t lose weight”. I wish I had a dollar for every time I have heard that said. Most people mistakenly believe that salads are healthy. The salads that most people eat cause more weight gain than weight loss.
Salads are unhealthy because of the toppings:

  • Creamy Salad Dressings: Most people drown their salads in a creamy salad dressing such as Thousand Island, French, Ranch, etc. These dressings are high in calories and in sugar. Only use these dressings if you are trying to gain weight.
  • Oil Dressings: A little extra virgin olive oil with your salad is great. Olive oil is a “healthy” fat with multiple benefits. However, it is high in calories. At over 100 calories per tablespoon, oils should only be used in moderation. Do not drown your salad in oil. Instead make a vinaigrette and put some in a little container. To eat your salad, dip your fork in the dressing before each salad bite.
  • Fatty Meats: Bacon and fatty deli meats simply add unnecessary calories to your salad. Instead consider low-fat deli meats, extra lean turkey bacon, other lean meats, or even better beans.
  • Fried Chicken: It always amazes me when someone trying to lose weight orders a salad topped with a fried chicken breast. Fried chicken is never part of a weight loss program. Top your salad with a grilled chicken breast instead.
  • Croutons and Crackers: Salad + Bread = Sandwich. Keep the bread off of your salad, it just adds unnecessary calories. If you have to have croutons, make your own with 100% whole wheat bread.
  • Fatty Cheeses: Fatty cheeses can turn a good salad bad. Choose 1% or fat-free cheeses instead.
  • Nuts: Nuts have “healthy” fats, but they are high in calories. Use sparingly.


Most smoothies are not healthy or low calorie. They are made with fruits, but add extra sugar, and/or syrups. Some even add frozen yogurt or ice cream! Fruits are good for you. However, most smoothies have 4-6 fruit servings with no additional fat or protein.
A fruit smoothie is typically high in calories and sugar. This type of meal/snack will lead to weight gain. The situation is made worst when sugar or syrup is added to the smoothie.
Make your smoothie healthier by decreasing the fruits and adding:

  • Protein: Drink smoothies that are made with fat-free milk, fat-free yogurt, and/or whey protein powder. Protein will help you to build muscle, boost your metabolism, and stay full longer.
  • Fat: Consider adding a small amount of extra-virgin olive oil, nuts, natural peanut butter, or flaxseed to your smoothie. These healthy fats will help to keep you full longer and improve your overall health.


Top 10 Healthy Foods That Are Not Really Healthy

Granola Bars

Most granola bars are made with sugar, high fructose corn syrup, chocolate, caramel, raisins, dried fruit, and/or candies. They are candy bars in disguise. They have little nutritional value and will lead to weight gain. If you have to have one, I would choose the granola bars made by Kashi.

Multigrain or Wheat Products

Do not be fooled by products that say they are multigrain or made from wheat. That does not mean that the product is healthy.
Multigrain simply means that the product is made from more than one type of grain. Corn chips and white rice are both made from grains, but neither is healthy and both can lead to weight gain.
Wheat products are not necessarily healthy either. White bread and most crackers are made from wheat, but they are not healthy.
You can eat multigrain or wheat products in moderation. However, do not fool yourself into believing you are eating well.
When choosing breads or crackers, look for products made from 100% whole wheat. Even better look for products made from 100% stone ground whole wheat. These products have more vitamins and fiber than their multigrain and wheat counterparts. For great bread, packed with protein and fiber, consider Ezekiel Breads (found in the freezer section). This line of breads is made with live whole grains and has a much higher fiber content than bread found on the shelf.

Fat-free Products

Just because a product says it is fat-free does not mean that it is healthy. Many of the fat-free products on the market were made fat-free by removing the fat and adding sugar.
You will eat more of these fat-free products and you will be less satisfied. This will lead to weight gain. If a product states that it is fat-free, look at the nutrition label and ingredients for added sugars and/or high fructose corn syrup.
Fat-free products can be healthy if they are removing unhealthy saturated fats and not replacing it with sugar. This is the case with most fat-free dairy products and lean cuts of meat.

Sports Drinks

You think sports drinks are healthy because you see athletes drinking them. However, they are not even remotely healthy.
Sport drinks are meant to replace the fluids and electrolytes lost from sweating. Unless you are exercising for over an hour in the heat, you are probably not sweating enough to need a sports drink.
Most sports drinks are high in sugar. High sugar drinks and foods lead to weight gain. Stay away from them.
If you think you need fluid and electrolyte replacement, drink the sugar-free sports drinks or fitness waters. Do not drink sports drinks as a beverage. That is not what they are intended for.

Energy bars are not healthy because they are not meant to be healthy. They are made to provide energy to people who are exercising for extended periods of time. They are not meant to be eaten as snacks or meals.
Unless you are an endurance athlete you do not need the energy boost from an energy bar. If you are trying to lose weight, your energy should be coming from the fat you are trying to get rid of.
Energy bars are high in sugar. Stay away from them. Real foods are cheaper and healthier.

Fruit Juice or Dried Fruit

Fruits are great in moderation because they are very nutritious and when incorporated into a balanced meal, they help keep you satisfied longer. They help to keep you satisfied because of their high water and high fiber content.
Fruit juices remove the best aspect of fruits by eliminating the fiber. They then add extra sugar making it even worse. You are much better off eating a fruit than drinking a fruit.
Dried fruit removes the water from fruit. Now the fruit becomes less satisfying and you eat more to compensate. Dried fruits are also bad because they are typically sugar sweetened, which makes them worst. Unless you are an astronaut and concerned about your foods spoiling, skip the dried fruits. Eat real fruit instead.


Many of you believe that wraps are healthy because the wrap it self has less calories and carbohydrates than two slices of bread. However, wraps can be just as unhealthy as most sandwiches if they are filled with creamy sauces, fatty cheeses, fatty meats, and/or fried meats.
To make your wrap healthier, fill them with lean meats, fat-free cheeses, and fresh vegetables. You can make it even healthier by eliminating the wrap and using lettuce instead. Lettuce wraps taste great.

Grilled Chicken Sandwiches

Boneless, skinless, chicken breasts are healthy. They are high in protein and low in saturated fat. They also taste great when grilled. However, most grilled chicken sandwiches are not healthy.
At most restaurants and fast food places, they take a perfectly great piece of chicken and put it in between two high-calorie white buns. They then serve it with a high-fat creamy sauce, high-fat bacon, and/or ketchup.
If you want to make your grilled chicken sandwich healthier, make it special. Tell your waiter that you do not want sauce, ketchup, or bacon. Tell them you only want mustard. If they have 100% stone ground wheat bread/bun request it. If they do not, simply remove one of the white bun halves.


There is no such thing as a healthy food. Any food can be made healthy or unhealthy if you do not know what you should and should not be eating. Feel free to email me any questions that you may have about your current weight loss plan. I will personally respond to everyone.