How do you tell which foods are healthier?
If you had to choose between two
seemingly healthy foods, could you tell which one packs the strongest nutrition
punch? Although most people know how to
pick out low-fat foods, it’s not always easy to tell which food is better for
If you rely on only fat grams and
calories, you might not always be getting the whole story when it comes to
rating those ‘healthy looking’ foods.
So, let’s put your summer nutrition know-how to the test.
What’s better for you?
Frozen yogurt or ice cream?
Hagen Daaz Vanilla Ice Cream (1
cup): 540 calories, 36 grams fat, 42 grams sugar (10.5 teaspoons)
Hagen Daaz Wild Berry Frozen Yogurt
(1 cup): 360 calories, 4 grams fat, 54 grams sugar (13.5 teaspoons)
Because frozen yoghurt is lower in
fat it is the better choice, especially if you are watching your waistline. It
is important to remember, though, that low fat doesn’t necessarily mean low
calorie. While one cup of Hagen Daaz Vanilla ice cream delivers 540 calories,
36 grams of fat, and 42 grams of sugar, the same size serving of Hagen Daaz
low-fat Wild Berry frozen yoghurt is certainly lower in fat, but it is not
lower in sugar – 54 grams or 13.5 teaspoons worth.
Read the labels carefully since
many frozen yoghurts provide just as many, if not more, calories than a
Beef hot dog or chicken hot dog?
Beef hot dog (37g): 110 calories, 9
grams fat, 380 milligrams sodium
Chicken hot dog (37g): 90 calories,
6 grams fat, 480 milligrams sodium
From a calorie and fat perspective,
the chicken hot dog would be the clear winner. Depending on the brand, a
chicken hot dog may also be lower in saturated fat compared to beef. Don’t
assume it’s the better choice all around, though. Clearly the chicken hot dog
is 100 milligrams more in sodium compared to beef, so read the label carefully
and compare brands.
Ideally one hot dog should provide
no more than 400 milligrams of sodium.
Spinach dip or hummus?
Spinach Dip, 2 tbsp: 120 calories,
13 grams fat, 150 milligrams sodium
Hummus, 2 tbsp: 60 calories, 3
grams fat, 110 milligrams sodium
We can thank mayonnaise and sour
cream for making spinach dip the poor choice here. At 120 calories, 13 grams of
fat, and 150 milligrams of sodium per two-tablespoon serving, spinach dip is
not the best choice despite its healthy-sounding name.
If you are looking for something to
dip your vegetables in and want to save calories, go for hummus dip. With so
many varieties to choose from today you will never get bored of this creamy,
Dill pickle or dill pickle relish?
Dill pickle, 1: 5 calories, 1 gram
sugar, 570 milligrams sodium
Dill pickle relish, 1 Tbsp: 15
calories, 3 grams sugar, 95 milligrams sodium
This is a no brainer. Choose the
relish instead of a sliced dill pickle on your next burger. For 10 extra
calories, your savings is 475 milligrams of sodium – almost one-third of your
Beer or gin and tonic?
Beer, 340 ml: 150 calories, 0 grams
fat, 3 teaspoons sugar
Gin and tonic, tall: 200 calories,
0 grams fat, 6 teaspoons sugar
A few too many of either and you’ll
wind up eating more food, since alcohol tends to stimulate your appetite! The
better choice in terms of calorie-savings, though, would be the bottle of beer.
The 150 calories come from alcohol and carbohydrate – 12 grams worth (or 3
teaspoons of sugar). The gin and tonic, on the other hand, would cost you 50
extra calories and three extra teaspoons of sugar.
Watch that tonic water; it’s the
same as having a soda. If you are looking for even more calorie-savings when
choosing an alcoholic beverage, choose a light beer or a wine spritzer.