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By Lauren LeBlanc

5 "healthy" foods that are not as healthy as you think

Making healthier choices in your diet regularly is one way to adopt a better lifestyle. However, many options we think are healthy for us or are labeled as "the best new thing in health" are just as bad as that bag of chips you were thinking about getting instead.

Knowing what to look for when grocery shopping is extremely important if you are trying to make healthier choices or shed a few pounds.

Always check the nutrition facts. This is so important. Learn to understand this label. You have your serving size – no, that whole box of cookies is not one serving – the servings per container and the nutritional breakdown of what ONE serving is.

Many people look at the listing of 200 calories and think "wow, 200 calories for this whole thing!" That's NOT always the case.

Make a habit of seeing exactly what the serving size is and how many calories, how much fat and carbs are in that serving!

There are many foods you're picking up off the shelves that are not as good for you as you may think.

1. Yogurt

Yogurt is an easy one to mistake for being a "healthier" option. Unfortunately, many yogurts (especially flavored) are very high in sugar. You might as well go for the cookies. Next time you head for the yogurt section, look at those handy nutrition facts and make sure you are grabbing one with lower sugar and fat content. If you want something even healthier, opt for Greek yogurt – it is known to be higher in protein.

2. Granola

This is another huge mistake many people make: "Ooooh granola! This is healthy! Let me sprinkle it on everything!"

Again, look at the sugar content. You will be surprised. Almost all of those granola options you see on the shelf are loaded with sugar.

Consider making your own granola at home. It is fast, simple, and you control the ingredients so that you know what is actually going in. Plus, you can make it in bulk so it is always there and ready!

3. Cereal

No, I am not referring to Fruity Pebbles. I am talking about the ones labeled as a "nutritious breakfast" but are, again, loaded with sugar!

The next time you grab those Honey Bunches of Oats, turn the box over and see what you are buying.

4. Oatmeal

"Say whaa? But oatmeal is known to be the best thing you can eat for breakfast." Well, yes it is. But only if you're buying plain, unflavored, preferably steel cut oats.

Put the maple brown sugar oatmeal down and grab the unflavored. Prepare as suggested and add some of your favorite fruit, chia seeds, cinnamon and stevia and you are much better off.

5. Protein bars and granola bars

These are sneaky, because you would think that they are an awesome, quick, grab-and-go snack that is better than the snickers staring at you at checkout. But you really need to be careful when choosing the right one. They can be so high in calories/fat/carbs if you are not paying close attention.

My favorites are the KIND bars. They are all natural, the ingredients list is short and sweet, and most of them are under 200 calories and 10g of sugar.

Be mindful on your next trip to the grocery store. Pay attention to those nutrition facts and start to know and understand exactly what it is you're putting in your body.

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