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Are your snacks really healthy?

Organic logo
Organic logo

Have you been buying the healthy organic or all natural snacks? It seems logical that if it is all natural or organic it may be healthy, that is not always the case. Lets look at a few things different ways to find out if your snacks are really healthy.
• Organic: In order to be labeled organic the ingredients or produce must be grown without the use of synthetic fertilizers, sewage sludge, GMO (genetically modified organisms), or pesticides. The FDA regulates the organic, if it is has been inspected by the FDA it will have the certified organic seal on the product.
Organic authority has come out with the top 20 brands that are best organic brands, is your brand on this list?
• All Natural: ‘all-natural’ was the second highest claim on American foods. The FDA does not pay too much attention to the claims of all natural, 100% natural, or 50% natural, they politely say they can not define natural. There has been several lawsuits especially in 2012 against large companies such as: General Mills, Kashi breakfast cereals, Frito-lays Tostitos, and Sun Chips for claiming all-natural. Genetically modified foods were contained in the majority of these claims. Pepsi has produced an ‘all-natural’ soda, it may be natural but that does not make it healthy. One thing to take away from this is the claim of ‘natural’ in any form is most likely a marketing ploy.
• Ingredients list: check the ingredients list and pay attention to the order of food. The ingredients are required to be listed by the largest amount contained to the least. In other words, the first few items listed is mainly what you are consuming.
• Nutrition label: don’t forget to look closely especially at the sodium levels! Any sodium level over 250 mg is a lot of sodium intake. Things like mixed nuts, most packaged foods often have high sodium.
• Portion control: this may be the most important part of your healthy snack. Depending on your snack will depend on the amount you should be eating. If it is not a fresh fruit or vegetable a handful may be all you need.
If you are truly wanting the most healthy options for snacks, pick up a fresh fruit or vegetable! Pick up an apple or some brocolli.

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