Pop quiz: what’s healthier: a burger or a salad?

It may seem like a no-brainer that fresh veggies are better for you than a greasy meat patty— but you can make healthy foods unhealthy with sugary, fatty, and otherwise calorie-packed add-ons.

We’ve picked the 4 foods most likely to lose their healthy edge– along with our favorite tricks  to keep them out of the high-calorie Danger Zone (but still tasting great).


As we mentioned, our friend the salad can become the enemy with the wrong things on top. Avoid the “loaded” salads most restaurants offer. Stay away from tons of cheese, fried chicken, bacon, and fatty dressings. [If you want lots of meat, cheese and toppings– stick with a burger!] Instead of the unhealthy stuff, go healthy with tuna or grilled chicken, your favorite veggies, and a vinaigrette for a salad that’s tasty and nourishing.


Just because you choose popcorn over candy at the movies doesn’t mean you’re getting a healthy snack. In fact—with up to 1200 calories in a medium bucket–it’s one of the most unhealthy things you could eat. [And that’s without butter on top!] Stick with the air-popped stuff, with light salt and seasoning, and go back to enjoying movies without the guilt.


Yogurt is tricky, too. Did you know that sweetened and flavored yogurts can have up to eight teaspoons of sugar into one serving? Yikes! To keep our yogurt healthy, we love to have a scoop of the plain Greek style with a drizzle of honey, a sprinkle of nuts, or some slices of fresh fruit.


Speaking of breakfast, granola is rarely seen as unhealthy, and it’s often a first choice among healthy eaters. But you can make your granola breakfast unhealthy fast. Lots of store-bought varieties are full of added sugar (and processed toppings) that negate the health benefits of the nuts and oats. We’d rather make it at home, and lightly sweeten it with honey and fresh fruit.

By keeping it simple— and swapping out unhealthy toppings, sauces, and dressings for more nutritious ones—it’s easy to make healthy foods healthy again, and take back your nutrition plan!

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