There are many ‘healthy drinks’ on the market now that can be found not only at your local whole foods or sprouts, but at convenience stores and gas stations. But how healthy are they really?
Marketing and branding can trick us into believing that what we’re consuming is healthy, but after some deeper digging it’s apparent that there are many drinks that are marketed as healthy that most definitely are not. Today, we’ll be exploring three specific things to look for on the back of drink labels that manufacturers sneak in that are not nearly as healthy as they portray.
There are many drinks retailed as “healthy” or “full of nutrients.” But just how good are those drinks really for you. Here are 3 ingredients that are snuck into those very drinks. You’ll want to look on your drink labels for these and make sure to avoid them. They sneak them into single serve beverages as well as milks, juices, and teas.
3 Dangerous Ingredients To Look Out For:
A large percentage of beverage formulations are sugar and acid, two major beverage additives. Many drinks claim to be “healthy” as they have “no sugar added.” This just means it does not include any sugar or sugar-containing ingredients. They work around it by providing sugar in the form of fruit puree or artificial/natural sweeteners. Because of this, the total sugar load is still significant and is often not balanced with any nutrients to help stabilize blood sugar levels and keep you full.
This is dangerous for blood sugar levels because when you consume liquid there is no fat, protein or fiber to buffer the absorption of sugar and slow it down. This causes a quick blood sugar spike and a subsequent shot of insulin following a rise in blood sugar. The more liquid sugar you have without a buffer (such as fat, protein or fiber) the more your blood sugar goes haywire.
There are a variety of gums added to “healthy” drinks, but they are all used to thicken, emulsify, and stabilize products. Consuming these on a regular basis has shown to lead to gastrointestinal side effects, such as abdominal gas, bloating and loose stools. This is especially a problem for individuals with digestive issues, sensitivities, and especially if one is one a Fermentable Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides, and Polyols (FODMAP) diet.
Reducing consumption of the gums found in drinks has led to an improvement in overall health and well-being for many. In other words if you want to have a healthy gut and immune system you want to avoid drinks with gums in them.
3. Natural Flavors
Natural flavors are highly processed, complex mixtures created by flavorists, meant to enhance flavor and do not contribute nutritional value to a food or beverage. The FDA has not officially defined this ingredient, and many nutrition experts and public interest groups have criticized them for not disclosing safety data on natural flavors. In most cases, there is not much of a difference from artificial flavors in terms of chemical composition and health effects. In other words, these are synthetic chemical compounds that aren’t truly identified. You’d be surprised how many ‘health drinks’ have these chemicals added in them.
Unfortunately many so called ‘healthy drinks’ include these ingredients. Even the pricey ones that you’ve been drinking. There area few drinks on the market that do have a pure base however. One such drink is Genius juice. Genius juice is a delicious smoothie that blends organic coconut meat and water as the base, and then based on the flavor will add cinnamon, cacao, coffee bean. All organic, with no additives of any kind.
This was a product that was actually featured on shark tank as you can see here:
They offer flavors like vanilla cinnamon (my personal favorite) mocha, plain and more on their website Geniusjuice.com.
If you love coconut, you’ll absolutely love genius juice! I gave one to a friend the other day and after his first sip he said “it tastes like a desert” and the funny thing about it is that there are no added sugars. BEST PART! It’s naturally sweet because the coconut meat and smoothie are blended immediately after harvesting.
Be sure to use the discount code ‘welcome5’ at checkout to save $5 off your order.
They also sell Genius juice on Amazon, which you can find here. I highly recommend the vanilla cinnamon flavor, and the mocha and plain are great too. They also have protein versions of their smoothies for post workout! There are few drink brands that are as clean as this one. Keep an eye on the back of your ingredient labels, thankfully we have genius juice! Try them out online or look for them in your local whole foods or sprouts location. We have to keep pure ingredients alive!
Recommended Reading: 8 Healthy Beverages You’ve Probably Never Heard Of