Tag Archives: unhealthy snacks

Most Granola Bars are Not Good for Health

Fiction: All Granola snack bars are loaded with healthy ingredients.

Fact: Granola bars are being promoted aggressively as a quick energy source and a healthy snack. They come with a base of oatmeal, or a number of exotic grains and nuts. They are promoted for their healthy ingredients, and they do taste delicious because of flavouring. But the fact is that a large number of granola bar varieties being sold in the stores are loaded with sugar or high-fructose corn syrup to give them that sweet flavour. So, if you are eating a granola bar to lose weight, or get your dose of quick energy, you may just skip it. Instead, eat fruit or some nuts, and you will be better off.

Answered by Prachi Agarwal, first appeared in HT City (Hindustan Times), Get Healthy Delhi! campaign, where she is a Fitness Expert on the panel of health experts.

— this article is written by a dietitian @ FitHo
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Unhealthy South Indian Snack Foods

South Indian cuisine is one of the most popular cuisines in India. This cuisine is prepared from the most natural ingredients available with minimum use of processed goods. Unfortunately it’s not the ingredients that can make south Indian food unhealthy but the way it is cooked it can negate its health benefits and add empty calories with almost no nutrition benefits to it.

Most South Indian snacks are deep fried and if you are consuming them everyday then they can be causing your health some serious damage in the long run. We have picked up some of the unhealthiest South Indian snacks to show you what make them bad for your health.

Murukku: Popularly known as chakli, its a crispy snack eaten with evening tea in many Indian households. Urad dal is mixed with rice flour and a host of other spices. There are varieties of murukku made. They are circular coils, which are deep fried until golden brown in color. They are high in cholesterol which leads to obesity and heart problem.

Nutrition Facts: 1 piece Murukku contains 78 calories, 4 gm fat, 9 mg cholesterol, 10 gm carbohydrates and 2 gm protein.

Pakoras: Pakoras are made by deep frying your preferred variety of vegetables/rice/potato – in a mixture of garlic, besan and salt. They are served along with a sweet and spicy dip. Pakoras increase bad cholesterol and lower good cholesterol from the body leading to obesity and coronary diseases.

Nutrition Facts: 1 serving (28 gm) contains 76 calories, 4 gm fat, 8 gm carbohydrate and 2 gm protein.

Vadai: Vadais are crunchy and extremely flavorful due to the range of spices added. They are crispy lentil-based fritters. There are several versions of vadai. They are deep fried until golden brown in color.

Nutrition Facts: 1 piece (33 gm) can contain 80 calories, 3 gm fat, 25 gm carbohydrates and 5 gm protein.

Bonda: The bonda is fried and crisp outside and soft inside. This is very famous in Indian cuisine. In North this is called as batata vada. The process of making a spicy bonda involves deep-frying potato (or other vegetables) filling dipped in gram flour batter.

Nutrition Facts: 1 piece (30 gm) contains about 70 calories, 1 gm fat, 2 mg cholesterol, 13 gm carbohydrates and 3 gm proteins.

Sev: They are a crispy snack made up of rice and besan flour. They are fried till they become crispy. They are very high in calories and fat.

Nutrition Facts: 1 cup (35 gm) can contain about 200 calories, 14 gm fat, 14 gm carbohydrates and 3 gm proteins.

— this article is written by a dietitian @ FitHo

Healthy Snacks and Dips for Card Parties

Its difficult to portion control when it comes to snacks. They are consumed while standing and socializing that might prevent the mind from registering the damage done in terms of calories. With moods elevated for the coming festive season and friends, family and relatives getting together for card parties, its difficult to escape the snacks. Snacks are also known as finger foods,  are small in size but can be very high in calories as most of them are either deep fried or consumed in large quantities. This  directly impacts the waist line and reverses any weight loss that you might have achieved especially for this festive season.

Prawn Salad (Cr/freedigital)

Not considering all snacks to be unhealthy but most of them are made from using cheese, refined flour, oil, high carb ingredients and many of them are deep fried. Also the dips which offer different flavors can be equally unhealthy if the ingredients have high salt, sugar or high fat.

We know it that its not just the snacks that play spoil sport to your weight loss resolutions but also the alcohol that accompanies it. If not the alcohol then the sweetened soda beverages, cold drinks, packaged juice, soda water etc are there to keep sipping on your favorite snack. Now we don’t want ti imply our options but present you some healthy options for consideration. Even if you are eating healthy options portion control is a must as every extra calorie consumed gets saved as fat in your body.

There are plenty of healthy snack options available and using some culinary skills and keeping out the unhealthy ingredients you can prepare or outsource some snacks for better health and taste.

Some Healthy Dip Options

Hung Yogurt Dip: Hung yogurt or greek yogurt is a healthy option as it is rich in nutrition and keeps a check on calorie intake. To make a dip you can use shredded garlic cloves, table spoon olive oil, chopped coriander and peppermint, some chilly flakes and salt for taste and combine it with greek yogurt. It tastes delicious and is a great substitute for   cheese dips, mayonnaise or other fattening dips.

Hummus: Chickpeas is the main ingredient in the recipe which is an excellent source of protein and important vitamins and minerals. Mash the chickpeas in a blender and mic chopped garlic (optional), seasame paste, olive oil, lemon juice and garnish it with coriander or peppermint leaves. This is a great dip that can be eaten with breads and cereals, pita bread and is filling too.

Green Chutney: This is a common dip in Indian menus and and compliments all the snacks. You can prepare green chutney in a variety of ways. You can make it in combination of coriander leaves, peppermint leaves, raw mango, lemon juice and salt for taste. If you want to further experiment it you can add a paste of onion and garlic paste in it to further the taste.

Fresh Vegetable Platter: For vegetable salad you can have plenty of options of vegetables that you can mix and prepare different salads. You could use fruits for a mixed taste and bring in more flavor to it. Simple salads with tomatoes, cucumber, radish, carrots, bell pepper, cruciferous vegetables are mostly available. You could add lean meat options, cottage cheese etc to avoid making the salad plain and simple. Even boiled eggs or scrambled eggs can add flavor to your simple salad.

Whole wheat Pita Bread: Pita bread is a great substitute for chips to be served as snacks. It has fiber and protein in it that helps you get fuller faster and longer preventing  you to continue nibbling. The salt in chips is highly addictive that’s what makes you keep munching them and before you realize it you have finished a large packet of chips all by yourself.

Barbecued Chicken: Everyone loves Barbecue chicken and vegetarians can opt for barbequed veg platter. Chicken is a nutritious food option rich in protein and low in fat if the fat is removed properly. Grill your chicken in the open and with some spices and dips enjoy eating it while you play cards and make some money.

Dry Fruits: Some different healthy dry fruits that you can casually munch while concentrating on your game can be a interesting choice. It will add nutrition to your body, is small in portion and can be eaten directly. Offer almonds, pistachios, walnuts, cashew-nuts etc. Peanuts or peanut salad can be a healthy option as well.

— this article is written by a dietitian @ FitHo

Is Cricket making you Fat?

Wondering how cricket might be making you fat? Plenty of ways actually..

Your Couch: The reason people gain weight is because they’re not burning any calories. While watching cricket, you may be sitting on your couch ranging from 3 hours to 5 days! Besides not burning calories, you might be promoting weight gain. A recent study showed that sitting for long hours promotes fat gain around the belly area.

Read below for more…

Photo- Fat Cricket Fans (mugley@flickr)

Beer: With a game of cricket, a few beers seems synonymous. With each beer, you’re not only consuming calories, but you’re also promoting fat gain by consuming alcohol. Did you know that alcohol consumption can cause man boobs- know how.

Grub: Along with the beer, are the chips and dip, the snacks, the ice cream and the sugar loaded juices and soft drinks. They’re all high on calories. All those extra calories just get stored as fat. Besides that, these are all high on simple carbohydrates (chemically, same as sugar), which further promotes fat gain- know how.

So, while you’re supporting your team, you’re also showing serious support to your belly fat too! Read our next article to know how you can stay fit and even burn calories while watching the match!

— this article is written by a dietitian @ FitHo