If you look at the majority of packaged foods, they have some claim or some messaging trying to spruce it up and make it seem healthier than it really is.
“Made with real fruit”
“No sugar added”
“No cholesterol” (Even though peanut butter shouldn’t have cholesterol to begin with…)
Anyway, it can be confusing navigating some of these labels — especially when it comes to frozen foods. In an article published on She Finds, nutritionist Lisa Richards and dietician Trista Best share their thoughts on frozen foods to avoid.
#1: Frozen Veggies With Additives
“Frozen produce made with added sugar, oil, dressings and cheeses have added calories that aren’t necessary and will negatively impact your weight loss.”- Lisa Richards
Just the other day, I was searching for cauliflower rice (which is great as a rice substitute that I love tossing into eggs) when I saw bags of frozen broccoli with cheese… sauced veggie mixes… and “veggie tots”. So Lisa is spot on, sometimes healthy these frozen veggies will have extra ingredients that somewhat “spoil” their benefits.
In fact, this is a golden example of Jack Lalanne (the godfather of modern fitness) saying:
“Don’t spoil healthy foods!”
#2: Frozen Vegan Microwavable Meals
“The sodium, fat and calorie content in most of these meals makes them among the worst vegan foods to purchase.”- Trista Best
I’ve personally noticed the selection of frozen vegan meals has slowly grown over the last few years. Vegan chicken filets… vegan Italian sausage… and even vegan ground beef. And while these are convenient, easy to make, sometimes tasty (key word: sometimes) and have the air of ‘healthy’ attached to them many are not.
And like Trista mentioned: the fat, sodium calorie-content and ingredients can be less than desirable. I’m sure there are exceptions to this.
For example, one brand I love is Quorn (not corn) which is made of mushrooms and depending on what you cook with it, you wouldn’t have a clue that you aren’t eating meat.
Here’s one more thought on frozen veggies:
Some people will poo-poo them (that’s the scientific term) and only buy fresh produce. And some people are great at making that work.
In my experience, when people start getting serious about cleaning up their nutrition they initially struggle with fresh produce — largely because they aren’t used to preparing it, eating it and cooking regular meals with it.
That’s where frozen veggies are a great way to stock up on veggies without the urgency of devouring them before they go bad (and mushy). Plus, veggies that are frozen lock in their nutrient content. Fresh produce is a different story. As soon as it’s harvested it starts losing its nutrients and continues to do so as it sits on the shelves.
So ultimately find out what works for you (and avoid the pitfalls above)
For my most in-depth training on mastering your nutrition, workout habits and mindset check out a free issue of Mind-Body Breakthroughs.
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