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In this photo made Tuesday, May 15, 2012, Amanda Perry drinks a protein shake for lunch at her home in Tyngsborough, Mass. Perry, a gym owner and personal trainer, blends a vegan protein powder with almond milk, natural peanut butter, ice and a banana as a drink in her daily diet. A surge in protein as both a nutrient and a marketing element has been added to the American diet. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa) Associated Press

These days it’s tough to navigate our health at the grocery store. What’s actually good for us and what we think is good for us can be two completely different things.

Here are 8 so-called “health” foods you may want to rethink before placing in your grocery cart:

1. Sports drinks

Powerade bottles in various flavors are photographed in San Francisco, Monday, May 5, 2014. A controversial ingredient, brominated vegetable oil, is being removed from some Powerade sports drinks. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

Most sports drinks are just made up of sugars, chemicals, and salt. While many people use them to hydrate, these drinks can cause a myriad of health issues in the body.

Solution: Try coconut water or chia seeds instead. Coconut water provides much-needed electrolytes, and both coconut water and chia seeds are great hydrators.

2. Almond milk

In this photo made Tuesday, May 15, 2012, Amanda Perry drinks a protein shake for lunch at her home in Tyngsborough, Mass.  Perry, a gym owner and personal trainer, blends a vegan protein powder with almond milk, natural peanut butter, ice and a banana as a drink in her daily diet.  A surge in protein as both a nutrient and a marketing element has been added to the American diet. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

Many almond milks contain a chemical called Carrageenan that can disrupt your GI tract and cause other issues.

Solution: Make your own at home or look for a brand that doesn’t contain Carrageenan on the ingredients list.

3. Frozen yogurt

Mango pieces are dropped onto green tea frozen yogurt at a Red Mango yogurt shop in Palo Alto, Calif., Monday, July 28, 2008. Frozen yogurt, trendy during the 1980s and early 1990s, has made a comeback but this time with an edge. Companies selling the soft stuff are opening stores with hip decor and pulsating music that draw a younger crowd.  (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma)

At some point we came to the conclusion that this was healthier than ice cream. The truth is that it is loaded with sugars and other processed ingredients that aren’t good.

Solution: You can easily make your own ice cream or frozen yogurt in about 10 minutes at home if you have a small ice cream maker.

4. Skim milk

Milk Fights Back Health

Remove the fat and we’re healthier, right? Wrong. Recent studies are showing people that consume healthy fats are actually able to maintain healthier weights. Those that drink whole or 2% milks end up fuller sooner, and do less binge eating to make up for the lack of fullness from skim milk.

Solution: Choose whole or 2% milk.

5. Turkey burgers

HealthBurgers

While they’re lower in saturated fats, sodium is usually higher. Plus, you’re also dealing with things like added growth hormones and an overuse of antibiotics.

Solution: If you do go for turkey, choose the organic option. Or you can try a veggie burger. Just be sure to choose one without a bunch of additives.

6. Reduced fat peanut butter

**FOR USE WITH AP LIFESTYLES** A variety of peanut butter products are shown on Jan. 24, 2008. Producers of nut butters are are filling the shelves with a dizzying array of options for not only the classic PB&J sandwich but for use as ingredients in many excitiing recipes. (AP Photo/Larry Crowe)

Skimming on the fat will get you things like partially hydrogenated oils, added sugars, carbohydrates, and sodium. And real healthy fats are actually good for the body.

Solution: Go with an all-natural or organic peanut butter. You can even make it easily at home and avoid the additives.

7. Sushi

In this Wednesday, Nov. 27, 2013 photo, a dish of a slice of roasted splendid alfonsino, left, topped with ginger and slices of roasted duck, right topped with spinach, leek and vinegared turnip are served on a table at Japanese restaurant Irimoya Bettei in Tokyo. Washoku, the traditional cuisine of Japan, is being considered for designation as part of the world’s priceless cultural heritage by the U.N. this week. But even as sushi and sake booms worldwide, purists say its finer points are candidates for the endangered list at home. The younger generation is increasingly eating Krispy Kreme donuts and McDonald’s, not rice. (AP Photo/Shizuo Kambayashi)

Trust me … no one mourns this fact more than I, as I am an avid sushi-lover. Because of the white rice, sushi is a high glycemic food with very little protein that can result in rapid increases in blood sugar and insulin levels.

Solution: Order sushi “naruto” or “sashimi” and the chef will either roll your sushi in cucumber instead of rice or just serve it as is: fish only.

8. Granola

This June 15, 2015 photo shows cinnamon citrus granola with pepitas and cashews in Concord, N.H. This dish is from a recipe by Alison Ladman. (AP Photo/Matthew Mead)

We see the word granola and suddenly feel like we’ve hit the motherload of healthier snacking. Not so true. Many granolas contain way too much sugar and oils.

Solution: Make your own so that you know the ingredients that are going into it, or choose a simpler whole grain cereal for your morning routine.

What are some food items that you can think of that aren’t necessarily healthy?


Crystal Collins — a Savings.com DealPro — is an Atlanta local, adventurer, a health advocate, and thrifty as can be. Check out her blog at NaturalThrifty.com.

Photos: Associated Press

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