Lately there has been a good amount of confusion swirling around certain foods that potentially leave eaters thinking they are healthy, when in fact, the opposite is true. The following are a few closely related, yet frequently mistaken foods. They are in many ways the Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde of food – one is genuinely healthy, the other only seems so. There’s a difference between…
Whole Wheat and Whole Grain
These two food twins – separated at birth – are among the most widely confused for each other. I can’t tell you how many people I come across that say, “This bread is much healthier, its whole wheat,” or “I just had a sandwich on whole wheat, aren’t I healthy?” No one likes to rain of a good parade, but healthy whole-wheat parades are, unfortunately an illusion. In almost every way whole wheat is just the same as sourdough, ciabatta, or any type of white bread – none are proven to be healthier. They all have one primary commonality – their grains are not intact. When it comes to eating bread – Whole GRAINS are an essential part. Some bread companies will even say they are whole grain, or misleadingly use the word “grain.” The healthiest loaf of bread is the one that has visable WHOLE and intact grains on and inside it. Remember this the next time you enjoy a slice of your favorite bread – whole grain is a must!
Almond Butter and Peanut Butter
Although both peanut butter and almond butter can be considered healthy under the right circumstances, almond butter is always a better option, in my opinion. Many types of peanut butter, including Skippy and Jif, have hydrogenated oils and other harmful ingredients that you really do not want to mess with. Additionally, all peanut butters often carry a potentially harmful carcinogen, called Aflatoxin. Although almond butter can be a bit pricey, your health is always worth the extra dollar or two.
Cow’s Milk and Coconut Milk
Did you know that humans are the only mammals that continue to drink milk after infancy? In my opinion, drinking milk as an adult is entirely unnecessary, I wouldn’t go so far as to call it harmful, but there are certainly better options. Anyone who says you won’t get enough calcium or protein if you rid your diet of milk, is full of it! Look at all the lactose-intolerant people, have they withered away and died on us? Nope. In fact, they are probably better off with their involuntary diet change. Alternatives to cow’s milk like almond milk and coconut milk are just as nutritious (if not more so) and feature significantly less calories per service.
Cow’s Milk (fat-free) – 90 calories per 8 oz serving
Almond Milk (unsweetened) – 35 calories per 8 oz serving
Coconut Milk (unsweetened) – 60 calories per 8 oz serving