7 Diet Food Ripoffs

What if you could lose all the weight you wanted to, without shelling out for high-priced “health” foods, and without even breaking a sweat? Sound impossible? Well, let Eat This, Not That! fan Raul Guerrero help dispel that myth:

“I lost 180 pounds with minimal exercising,” says Raul, at right, who trimmed his body from 385 pounds to a svelte 210 in just 11 months. He didn’t have to join a fancy gym or subsist on high-priced “health” foods: “I learned that it’s a myth that healthy living is expensive,” he says. Nor did he have to starve himself: “I still eat like a big man!” In fact, you can eat what you want, when you want, if you know how to make some simple, smart swaps. And here’s another secret you need to know: Many high-priced health foods are more likely to add fat to your body than to strip it away. And that’s why Eat This, Not That! has been on a crusade against health-food ripoffs. Below, you’ll find some of the worst offenders in the supermarket, some tricksters lurking on restaurant menus, and some simple swaps that will help you strip away pounds, fast.

Bonus Tip: Discover more surprising nutrition and weight loss secrets like this by  (where I’m giving a FREE iPad to a lucky follower) or by signing up for our FREE Eat This, Not That! newsletter.1. WORST HOT CEREALQuaker Instant Raisin & Spice (1 packet)150 calories2 g fat (0 g unsaturated)14 g sugars

Somebody must have been sleeping at the FDA the day Quaker was approved to carry this oversized heart-health logo on its box. Sure, it’s low in saturated fat and cholesterol, but it’s absolutely teeming with sugar. One bowl has more sugar than a scoop of Edy’s Slow Churned Rocky Road Ice Cream. Your best bet is to stick with Quaker’s old-fashioned oats and sweeten it yourself with fruit, but if you’re set on the single-serving packets, go with the Lower Sugar variety. It provides just as much fiber with a mere fraction of the sugar.

2. WORST YOGURTYoplait 99% Fat Free Strawberry (1 container, 170 g)170 calories 1.5 g fat (1 g saturated) 27 g sugars Just look at the ingredient list to see the true picture. After milk, sugar is the next ingredient. Scroll down the list a little and you’ll find high-fructose corn syrup, too. So sure it’s “99% fat free,” but it also has more sugar than an entire Hershey’s Milk Chocolate bar. Fage’s is plenty sweet, but more of its sugar comes from real fruit. Plus it justifies the sugar with 17 grams of protein—more than 3 times as much as you’ll find in Yoplait’s yogurt. Eat This Instead! Fage 2% Strawberry 130 calories 2.5 g fat (1.5 g saturated) 17 g sugarsBonus Tip: Smart snacking can work wonders on your waistline, but it can be a challenge to find options that keep the sugar low and the protein and fiber high. That’s why we put together The 50 Best Snack Foods in America, to help keep you lean and full all day long!3. WORST REDUCED-CALORIE ICE CREAM NOVELTYBreyers Carb Smart Almond Bar (1 bar)180 calories15 g fat (10 g saturated)5 g sugars

 The fact that this bar has only 5 grams of sugar is commendable, but the fact that it contains half your day’s saturated-fat limit is not. Instead, look for a treat like Slim a Bear that puts a cap on both sugar and fat. Not only does that protect your heart, but it also diminishes your calorie impact.Eat This Instead!Klondike Slim a Bear No Sugar Added Ice Cream Sandwiches (1 sandwich)100 calories2 g fat (1 g saturated)3 g sugars

4. WORST NUTRITION BARPowerBar Energize Berry Blast (1 bar)210 calories3.5 g fat (0.5 g saturated)24 g sugars

Not only does it contain virtually zero fiber, but the first ingredient is evaporated cane juice, otherwise known as sugar. Switch to Kashi’s GoLean Crunchy! and you’ll earn a touch more protein and a ton more fiber. Plus, you’ll drop your sugar load by almost half.Eat This Instead!Kashi GoLean Crunchy! Chocolate Caramel (1 bar)150 calories3 g fat (2 g saturated)14 g sugar

Bonus Tip: I get it—life is hectic. That’s why we created our new book: The Eat This, Not That! No-Diet Diet, a complete day-by-day, meal-by-meal weight-loss plan for busy people who hate to diet. You can eat all your favorite foods, at your favorite restaurants, and even enjoy your favorite desserts—while shedding belly fat fast. Check it out by clicking the book cover below.

5. WORST WHEAT BREADArnold Whole Grains Health Nut (2 slices)240 calories4 g fat (0 g saturated)4 g fiber

Don’t blow your calories on the bread; save them for the nutrient-dense stuff you’re going to stuff inside. Arnold’s Whole Grains Health Nut earns the Worst Bread distinction by being high in calories and carrying a load of refined flour. Make your sandwiches on Nature’s Own Double Fiber Wheat instead and you’ll eliminate 140 calories and double your fiber intake.Eat This Instead!Nature’s Own Double Fiber Wheat (2 slices)100 calories1 g fat (0 g saturated)10 g fiber6. WORST SMOOTHIESmoothie King Banana Boat (40 oz)1,048 calories24 g fat (12 g saturated)154 g sugars

There’s a health halo hanging over everything smoothie-related, which makes it seem as though you can do no damage in the smoothie shop. Truth is, you can. Case in point: Smoothie King’s Banana Boat. It sounds healthy enough, but it’s made with ice cream and served from a mammoth-size cup. It also packs in more sugar than 8 Twinkies. Make it a rule to never drink out of anything bigger than Smoothie King’s 20-ounce cup, and then do yourself a favor by ordering the Youth Fountain.Eat This Instead! Smoothie King Youth Fountain (20 oz)253 calories0 g fat54 g sugars

Bonus Tip: Studies show that a high-sodium, low-potassium diet is linked to a host of maladies, including high blood pressure, stroke, osteoporosis, and exercise-induced asthma. Do yourself a favor by avoiding the 30 Saltiest Foods in America.

7. WORST SALADT.G.I. Friday’s Santa Fe Chopped Salad 1,830 calories 29 g saturated fat 3,450 mg sodiumIt’s time to shake your belief in the unbounded goodness of greens. Sure, leafy vegetables are good for you, but not when they’re encumbered by fried tortilla strips and a reckless deluge of ranch dressing. In the 15 minutes it takes you to eat this salad, you’ll take in a day-and-a-half’s worth of sodium and saturated fat along with nearly a full day’s worth of calories.Eat This Instead! Soutwest Wedge Salad 480 calories 8 g saturated fat 1,470 mg sodium

Bonus Tip: Almost every chain restaurant has a few wolves in sheeps’ clothing on the menu, and they’re usually hiding in the salads section. Check out this shocking list of 20 Salads Worse Than a Whopper!

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