The Great Pretenders

Down each grocery aisle, snack packages flaunt nutritional promises. Compare these 3 to some smarter options that could serve you better:

Baked potato chips: While baked brands contain less overall fat than the greasy originals, they’re still calorie rich and nutrient deficient. To satisfy cravings for a salty crunch, try popcorn instead. At 65% fewer calories/cup, it also supplies more fiber. In fact, the American Dietetic Association found that kernel munchers eat up to 2.5 times more whole grains than non-popcorn snackers. Just go easy on the butter and salt; buy oil-free or air-popped brands.

Gummy fruits: Whatever real fruit’s in there is often hidden under high fructose corn syrup and hydrogenated oils. A better bet would be a smoothie with some of your favorite fresh fruits. Or go with dried fruits, which still maintain much of their fiber and antioxidants.

Nonfat salad dressings: In place of saturated fats, these products often add extra sugar or corn syrup and artificial ingredients. Certain fats are good for you, so stripping them away may actually reduce nutrition potential. Consider organic versions that contain little more than olive oil, vinegar, and a handful of herbs, or make your own from scratch.

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