December 2019
Jacqui Lewis - BHSc Nutritional and Dietetic Medicine

What Are the Sneaky Diet Saboteurs?

Different kinds of junk foods

Cutting the junk from your diet is the first step towards your healthy weight, but sometimes, the healthy foods you swap in are surprisingly high in fat and calories.

That's why serving size matters - even when it comes to fruits, nuts, yogurt, and salads.

So STOP sabotaging your diet!

Follow our guide to healthy—but sneaky—foods. Health friendly swaps and serving sizes follow, making it easier to indulge in meals that pack the best nutritional punch.


Dry Fruits - BN Healthy

Nuts are packed with heart- healthy omega-3 fatty acids, protein, vitamin E, and fibre—but they're also high in calories.

A quarter-cup of almonds, for example, contains 132 calories.

It's all too easy to eat them by the handful, like popcorn.


Measure out a serving rather than eating straight from the container. Better still – get yourself a E-ZY SNAX stackable lunch box and you’ll be sure you are only consuming a 100 calorie serving every time!


RED WINE - BN Healthy

People who consume moderate amounts of red wine may be at reduced risk for heart disease, Alzheimer's, certain types of cancers, and even weight gain. 

The key word: moderation.

A 150ml (half a cup) serving is about 130 calories.


Beware fishbowl-sized glasses, which make you more likely to overpour.

Pour your wine into a measuring cup, and then dump it into your glass to see what a serving looks like in your glassware.


Avocado - BN Healthy

This superfood is packed with good-for-you nutrients and antioxidants, as well as belly-filling fibre and heart-healthy monounsaturated fats.

But if your goal is to lose weight, you'll need to watch your intake.

Even foods packed with healthy fats are calorically dense - so PORTIONS is EVERYTHING!


One serving size is about 1/5 of an avocado, and clocks in at 50 calories. A single avocado can deliver more than 350 calories.

This means that the small bowl of guacamole you enjoy so much is more than a snack it's actually getting closer to a whole meal!


Chocolate - BN Healthy

Dark chocolate contains disease-fighting polyphenols and has even been associated with weight loss —if you don't eat too much of it, that is.

25g of dark chocolate packs in 155 calories and 9 grams of fat, 5 of it saturated.


Snack on dark chocolate that contains a high percentage of cacao that means it's less sugary. Have just a couple squares at a time.


Dried Fruits -BN Healthy

Dried fruits are just normal fruits that have had the water taken out of them.

So, a cup of dried fruit packs five to eight times more calories and sugar than a cup of the fresh stuff.

Here's some perspective: a cup of fresh grapes is 60 calories, while a cup of raisins is a whopping 460 calories.


Go for fresh fruit whenever possible.

Use dried fruit sparingly as a garnish, not as a snack.


Yoghurt - BN Healthy

A container of plain yoghurt contains just 100 calories and provides a dose of bone-building calcium.

But one small cup of yoghurt that comes with fruit on the bottom may contain up to 150 calories and 26 grams of sugar.


Buy plain, fat-free yoghurt and add sweetness with fresh fruit and honey.

Fat-free Greek yoghurt is even better! It's naturally lower in sugar but contains double the protein to keep you satisfied longer.


Gluten Free Packaged Food - BN Healthy

If you have a gluten intolerance, then you must drop wheat, barley, and rye from your diet to stay healthy.

But gluten-free products aren't necessarily healthy.

Gluten-free packaged foods often replace regular flour refined flours, and are usually loaded with sugar which decreases nutritional content = sugar crash and cravings a few hours later. Removing glutenous grains also lowers B group Vitamins and Fibre.


Whether or not you're on a gluten-free diet, you should try to eat as many whole, natural foods as possible, and limit your intake of heavily processed foods.

Wholemeal/rye/sourdough breads are good alternatives to white breads!


Coffee - BN Healthy

The caffeine in coffee may help protect your brain cells against the damage that causes dementia, and your brew's antioxidants ward off disease.

But if you order a large latte with whole milk, you'll be sipping up to 300 calories and 15 grams of fat.


Drink it black, and you set yourself back just 5 calories.

Add a splash of fat-free milk and a teaspoon of sugar for just an additional 30 calories.


Iced Tea - BN Healthy

Tea contains disease-fighting antioxidants and has been linked to improved heart health and reduced risk for dementia.

However, drinking sweetened bottled tea may do your health more harm than good.

These products are loaded with sugar, and one bottle may contain two or more servings.


Brew your own iced tea and add sweetener gradually to taste; you'll probably use less than you'd get from a bottle.

Or, simply buy an unsweetened variety.

Jacqui Lewis
BHSc Nutritional and Dietetic Medicine

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