The hidden sugars in "healthy" snacks

Feeding your kids snacks can be tricky.

Sometimes they are picky eaters – they want certain colors or dislike particular textures. Sometimes they hate sitting in the car unless they have an ample and diverse selection of snacks (like my son – “no daddy I don’t want apple sauce, I want carrots, no I want soft pretzels“).

Foods that are portable and easy to eat in the car are very helpful when you are on the go. You would think I would be giving my son this:
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We are not. If I am being honest, I wish I could tell you that is because of the ingredients, but a close friend made us promise not to give him tubed yogurt because “it wasn’t dignified” (I guess you had to be there, I laugh every time I think about it). But the ingredients are not great either…

Gogurt contains:

Cultured Pasteurized Grade A Low Fat Milk, Sugar, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Modified Corn Starch, Kosher Gelatin, Tricalcium Phosphate, Potassium Sorbate Added To Maintain Freshness, Carrageenan, Natural And Artificial Flavor, Blue #1, Red #40, Vitamin A Acetate, Vitamin D3.

Clearly they are adding quite a bit of additional sugar to these portable treats. Several parenting websites have called out Gogurt due to sugar content. Almost all of them suggest using greek yogurt with natural sweeteners as a substitute.

Here is a video on how to make your own portable yogurt snacks:
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FYI: here are the “silicon things” that she references in the videos.

Food geared towards kids tend to be higher in sugar. I don’t think this will come as a surprise anyone. Take a look at fruit snacks, classic peanut butter brands, and even oatmeal (the flavored kind) – they are loaded up with sugar to make the food more palatable to the target audience.

In an era of instant access and convenience, the only absolute way to know what your child is consuming is to study the labels and finding more natural alternatives or making the food yourself.

Photo: Micah Taylor, Flickr

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