Should You Skip these 4 New Snack "Health Halo" Foods?

Posted On Jan 28, 2017 By Erin Kuh, MBA, RD

Should You Skip these 4 New Snack Health Halo Foods

New and exciting "healthy" snack foods are at an all-time high. From baked kale chips to quinoa-nut clusters to gluten-free anything and everything are even popping up in gas stations and convenience stores. Although they sound healthier than their conventional counterparts, most of them aren't, nor are they easy on the pocket book.

  1. Savory high protein snack mixes and bars

    With exciting flavor combinations such as smokehouse BBQ, pizza, Sriracha, and curry, the snack bar isle is no longer dominated by sweet candy-bar like concoctions. But are these new varieties any healthier? Some of them are. They have less sugar with protein and healthy fats coming from combinations of nuts and seeds and they're more likely to keep you feeling fuller than a bag of potato chips. The snack boxes range from 120-150 calories and bars have about 180. For most people, this calorie range is perfect for a snack.

    Verdict: Keep 'em, on occasion or in place of other energy or granola bars but check the calories.

  2. Candy bar snack pouches

    The word "snack" makes it sound as if it's lower calorie, after all it's only a snack. Snacks should be around 100-200 calories for most people, depending on your meal size. But if you eat the whole "snack" pouch, which has 2.5 servings (which wouldn't be hard to do) you get a whopping 280-300 calories, more than most candy bars, which come in at around 220 calories each.

    Verdict: Skip em!

  3. High protein cookies

    Most single packages actually have two servings per cookie. Deceiving, right!? Don't be fooled by high-protein cookies, bars, and energy bites. Just because they have added powdered protein doesn't make them a good choice. Stick with more nutritious sources of protein. Convenient grab and go protein options include nuts, string cheese, and hard-boiled eggs.

    Verdict: Skip em!

  4. Crackers and chips made with vegetables, beans, and sweet potatoes

    With packaging touting pictures of fresh vegetables and whole beans, these new creative cracker and chip varieties do look and sound healthier, but when nutrition facts are compared side-by-side, sweet potato black bean crackers and roasted red pepper vegetable chips aren't much different than the traditional potato chip. You'll save a measly 20-30 calories per 1oz serving but won't get much more in the way of nutrition.

    Verdict: Skip em!

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