by Food Network Magazine in Which is Healthier?, March 27, 2014
by Food Network Magazine in Which is Healthier?, July 24, 2013
Before you hit the salad bar, see how some popular ingredients compare.
Italian Dressing vs. Balsamic Vinaigrette
WINNER: Balsamic vinaigrette. Balsamic vinaigrette can contain a third fewer calories and grams of fat than Italian dressing. Bottled versions of both are often made with additives and preservatives, so mix your own: Combine three parts olive oil with one part balsamic vinegar and a little salt and pepper.
Spinach vs. Spring Mix
WINNER: Spinach. It’s a close call — both are super low in calories and packed with nutrients. Spinach contains slightly more phytonutrients, antioxidants, B vitamins, potassium, calcium and iron. Spring mix usually contains spinach, but it’s bulked up with lighter lettuces like frisee that don’t offer much in terms of nutrition.
Cheddar vs. Feta
WINNER: Feta. Cheddar has 32 percent more protein and 49 percent less sodium than feta. But feta has fewer calories and grams of fat (total and saturated) than cheddar and because it’s so creamy and flavorful, a little goes a long way.
Grilled Chicken Breast vs. Diced Turkey
WINNER: Grilled chicken breast. Sodium is the big issue here: Diced turkey is more likely to be processed and loaded with sodium — up to 16 times the amount in store-bought or restaurant-cooked chicken breasts. Also, chicken breast is white meat, while diced turkey can contain a mix of light and fattier dark meat.
Croutons vs. Tortilla Strips
WINNER: Croutons. Croutons are usually much lower in fat because they’re sauteed or baked rather than deep-fried like tortilla strips. The exception? If you see croutons labeled “cheesy” (as opposed to plain), beware: The added cheese makes them almost as fatty as tortilla strips.
Food Network Magazine’s expert Jaclyn London is a registered dietitian in New York City.
by Dana Angelo White in Grilling, Which is Healthier?, July 23, 2013
Pay attention when you hit those touristy candy shops this summer: Some treats are better than others.
Red Licorice vs. Black Licorice
WINNER: Red licorice. Many people assume that black licorice root can alleviate health issues. This hasn’t been proven, but eating large quantities of black licorice may be dangerous to people 40 and older because a compound in it has been linked to heart problems, according to the FDA.
Boardwalk Fudge vs. Boardwalk Taffy
WINNER: Boardwalk taffy. A 1-inch square of chocolate fudge has more than double the fat of the equivalent amount of taffy (about seven pieces). Plus, fudge is higher in saturated fat, which can raise cholesterol in the bloodstream and lead to heart problems.
Classic Gummies vs. Sour Gummies
WINNER: Classic gummies. The calorie and sugar counts are almost identical, but studies suggest that sour candy erodes tooth enamel more than other types because it’s more acidic. And because gummies stick to your teeth longer than other sweets, sour ones pose a greater risk of dental damage.
by Food Network Magazine in Which is Healthier?, June 2, 2013
I used to be totally against anything related to a hot dog. Two kids later, I find myself turning to them as a viable option for the occasional backyard barbecue or last-minute weeknight dinner. Part of the reason I changed my mind was because of healthier options. After reading TONS of ingredient labels, I found some decent choices out there, with something to please everyone (including vegetarians). In honor of National Hot Dog Day, here are some of the top dogs.
Applegate Farms Uncured Beef Hot Dog
Beef, spices and that’s about it. These tasty hot dogs are free of nitrates and have only 70 calories and 6 grams of fat. Organic versions are also available and Applegate Farms uses no antibiotics with their animals.
Field Roast Vegetarian Frankfurter
Super popular among vegetarians and meat-eaters alike, this 2.75-ounce “frankfurter” contains 180 calories and 8 grams of fat. It’s made from wheat gluten, tomato paste and spices. It’s a bit high in the sodium department (690 milligrams), so reserve for occasional enjoyment.
by Food Network Magazine in Which is Healthier?, September 19, 2012
Food Network Magazine compared some fiesta favorites — did your Mexican-food favorites come out on top?
Red Sangria vs. White Sangria
WINNER: Red sangria. Red wine is loaded with resveratrol, a compound in the skin of grapes that is thought to be good for the heart. White wine has none of this, plus many white sangria recipes call for fruit juice and sweet liquors, so they typically end up with higher sugar counts.
Yellow Corn Tortilla Chips vs. Blue Corn Tortilla Chips
WINNER: It’s a draw. Blue corn chips are often labeled as all natural, so people assume they’re the better choice. But the FDA doesn’t regulate the use of that term. In fact, the two varieties have the same number of calories and grams of fat. And because most of the sodium is added, the health factor depends more on the brand than on the color.
Cotija Cheese vs. Mexican Cheese Blend
WINNER: Mexican cheese blend. Ounce for ounce, these taco toppings have the same number of calories (about 100) and similar levels of fat and protein. But cotija cheese has three times as much sodium, giving Mexican cheese blend the edge.
by Dana Angelo White in Which is Healthier?, August 7, 2012
Food Network Magazine staged a breakfast face-off and asked a registered dietitian to name the better choices. The results might surprise you.
Cow’s Milk vs. Soy Milk
WINNER: Cow’s milk. To make soy milk taste better, many manufacturers add sugar (especially to flavored kinds). Plus, soy milk doesn’t naturally contain as much protein or calcium as cow’s milk. Soy milk can be a healthful alternative if it’s fortified and doesn’t have too much added sugar, but unless you’re lactose intolerant, just stick with 1 percent or skim milk.
Smooth Peanut Butter vs. Chunky Peanut Butter
WINNER: It’s a draw. The amount of salt, sugar and oil in peanut butter can vary by brand and even within each brand, but smooth and crunchy versions are the same nutritionally—one is just ground more than the other. The healthiest option: peanut butter without added sugar or salt.
by Dana Angelo White in Which is Healthier?, July 1, 2012
Deciding whether a food is healthy or not can be really difficult, especially when food companies market their products in such clever ways. It’s even harder to decide between foods with healthy components, or similar-sounding foods. For this food fight we’ll explore regular and Greek-style yogurt — which one is the better choice?
Greek-style yogurt contains less water than regular varieties. This creates yogurt with tangier flavor and thicker consistency; this also affects the nutrition facts. One cup of non-fat plain Greek yogurt has 80 calories and 13 grams of protein (comparison to regular yogurt is below). The calcium and vitamin D content of all yogurts will vary from brand to brand (and whether you choose, non-fat, low-fat or whole milk) so check labels.
by Toby Amidor in Which is Healthier?, March 8, 2012
Potatoes are loaded with nutrients including fiber, vitamin C and potassium – they’re also free of fat and cholesterol. No matter which recipe you choose, potatoes are often accompanied by good-for-you veggies and herbs like celery, onions, carrots, parsley, dill and basil.
The addition of mayonnaise, oily dressings and sometimes bacon will fatten up potato salad. You’re looking at over 420 calories and 30 grams of fat per cup.
Healthy Potato Salad Tips:
- Cut the mayo in half and replace it with nonfat Greek yogurt.
- Lose the mayo all together and use small portions of vinaigrette dressing.
- Make your favorite recipe with sweet potatoes instead.
- More tips and recipes for lightening up potato salad.
by Toby Amidor in Which is Healthier?, September 15, 2011
- Which is healthier?
Our next head-to-head battle is between two popular pasta entrées. We’re pitting cheesy layers of lasagna against gooey mac & cheese. Who’ll win this food fight?
If your lasagna includes pasta, veggies, cheese and meat, you’ve got yourself a pretty balanced meal. Plus the tomato sauce is a great way to get in the antioxidant lycopene.
This dish is also easy to modify— pile on more veggies or eliminate the cheese to accomodate a dairy allergy. It’s also a very easy dish to cook and freeze in individual portions—a plus for those busy weeknights.
We’re teaming up with fellow food bloggers to host a Brown-Bag Challenge, a month-long initiative to eat consciously and save money by packing a lunch each weekday instead of eating out. Join us here and share what you’re eating on Facebook and Twitter with the hashtag #brownbag.
Healthy Eats’ Brown-Bag Challenge has folks from around the country packing their lunches this month. Two popular brown bag items have been tuna salad sandwich and turkey sandwiches. These bad boys are going head-to-head for the title of healthiest sandwich.
Tuna Salad Sandwich
Three ounces of canned tuna in water contains 108 calories and 20 grams of protein. It provides 5 percent of your daily iron needs, a multitude of energy boosting B-vitamins and 80% of your daily recommended amount of selenium. Tuna is also plentiful in omega-3 fat, which is important for heart health, growth and brain function. For the sandwich, using whole grain bread can up your daily dose of fiber as can piling up on the veggies.