CINCINNATI - Some foods are considered to be healthier than others, but even the "good" ones can have some unintended dietary effects when amounts add up.
KERO-TV in Bakersfield, Calif., put together a list of five foods that can be beneficial when used in reasonable amounts but can contain surprising amounts of calories.
Nuts can be high in vitamins and minerals and are generally considered to be nutritious, but having too much can make the calories pile up quickly.
One ounce of almonds, for example, has 150 calories and 15 grams of fat. Eating more than an ounce or so of almonds can turn a healthy snack into a fat-filled mini-meal.
Oils, such as those found in almonds, avocados and sunflower seeds, have many health benefits, but a serving is equal to only a tablespoon. Having closer to 1/4 cup of oil could mean as much as 500 calories.
3. Energy bars and drinks
Energy bars are constantly associated with fit people who are refueling their bodies to recover and to rebuild muscle. But many energy bars are little more than glorified candy bars, with lots of sugar to go along with key nutrients.
The healthiest bars will have whole grain as a top ingredient and sugars much further down the list. But calories connote energy, so energy bars inherently have high calorie counts. If you eat them regularly but don't exert much energy, then the value of the bar decreases.
The same is true for energy drinks. Sugars often are a main ingredient, so along with the electrolytes there are plenty of calories.
4. Fruit Juice
If fruit is healthy, then what about fruit juice? Juices that are made of 100 percent juice are relatively healthy and have natural sugars, but when the drink is only 10 percent juice, there tend to be lots of added sugars. Any drink that has high-fructose corn syrup as a top ingredient will be packed with added sugar.
The traditional food for the sick has long been viewed as a healthy option, but many are high in fat and sodium. Many tomato soups, for example, are cream-based, meaning that the fat content is high. Soups hide the fat and sodium, so consumers often do not realize how much they are ingesting.