How to choose healthy snacks from the supermarket

Last Updated: May 6, 2021 References Approved

This article was co-authored by Dina Garcia, RD, LDN, CLT. Dina Garcia is a Registered Dietitian, Nutritionist, and the Founder of Vida Nutrition and Conscious Living, her private practice based in Miami, Florida. Dina specializes in helping yo-yo dieters and binge eaters overcome food guilt, practice self-love, and rediscover self confidence. She has over 15 years as a dietitian. She received a BS in Dietetics from Ball State University and completed her supervised dietician practice at California State University, Fresno. She is certified as a Registered Dietitian (RD) by the Commission on Dietetic Registration and is a Florida Licensed Dietician/Nutritionist (LDN).

There are 16 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page.

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Eating the right snacks is an important part of a healthy lifestyle. Snacking provides fuel and boosts energy levels, as well as provides little delights throughout the day! By shopping smart, making mindful decisions, and being aware of ingredients, you can easily integrate healthy snacks into your life.

How to choose healthy snacks from the supermarket

It’s 3 o’clock and your stomach is rumbling. No possible way you’re making it to dinner. While it’s tempting to make a vending machine run or rummage around mindlessly in the fridge, snacking is (yet another of those) things in life where a little advanced planning pays off big.

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To keep your weight in check, healthy food choices matter. And that includes all of the food you eat, says dietitian Mira Ilic, RD, LD. Your carefully planned diet can go astray if you’re unwise in the snacking department.

“I recommend a Mediterranean way of eating in general — for both meals and snacks,” Ilic advises.

After all, about 90% of Americans snack between meals, according to the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, as long as you follow these simple guidelines.

Make smart snack choices

Choose nutrient-dense snack foods. Why? It’s because snacks that combine protein, high-fiber carbs and healthy fats are nourishing. That means they’ll keep you feeling full longer.

Protein can come from both plant and animal sources (if you eat it). And you’ll find healthy fats in avocado, olive oil, nuts, nut butter, seeds (like chia or flax) and fish.

So fruits and veggies should be a large part of what you’re snacking on, Ilic says. Unlike many snacks, they’re not just empty calories. They have nutrients and antioxidants, and some have anti-inflammatory properties. (Bonus!)

But knowing which foods to avoid is just as important as those to choose. Stay away from sugary foods, processed foods made with white flour (which are inflammatory), and foods high in sodium. Saturated fats and trans fats can also promote inflammation.

Be sure to read food labels. Yogurt itself is a fine pick. But it can be unhealthy if it contains lots of sugar. If you buy the flavored variety, find one with less than 10 grams of sugar, she suggests.

When you snack matters

Well-timed snacks can help to keep you from overeating at meal time.

For example, it’s actually a good idea to get that 3 p.m. snack to tide you over from lunch until dinner.

Why planning ahead + portion control are so important

If you run out the door in the morning with no thought to what you’ll snack on that day, there’s a good chance you’ll regret it later.

It’s too easy to grab a bag of potato chips or a sugar-laden power bar masquerading as a healthy snack when you’re ravenous. These options tend to be high in calories and loaded with added sugar, salt and bad-for-you fats.

The solution? Pack your own snacks each morning (or the night ahead) in a small container or small snack bag. Aim for about one-quarter to one-third of a cup.

Here are 10 healthy snacks ideas that Ilic recommends to get you started:

  1. Veggies with hummus.
  2. Veggies with a dip made from plain yogurt and dill (or other herbs and spices).
  3. A smoothie featuring protein (yogurt, tofu, protein powder), fresh or frozen berries, spinach or kale, and chia seeds.
  4. Sardines on whole-grain crackers.
  5. Smoked salmon on crackers or cucumber slices.
  6. Dry-roasted edamame.
  7. Roasted chickpeas with anti-inflammatory spices like turmeric and ginger.
  8. Nuts of any kinds
  9. Natural nut butter on apple slices.
  10. Trail mix made from dry-roasted edamame, nuts, seeds and unsweetened dry fruit.

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How to Choose a Healthy Packaged Snack

Choosing a healthy snack product from the supermarket sure is much harder than it used to be. With so many different options on the shelves, and companies using clever marketing on the front of the packets, it can be super tricky to find a snack that is right for you and your family.

Quite often the common healthy snacks that you buy in the supermarket can actually pretty high in sugar and have other nasty little ingredients added that just shouldn’t be there.

You may know that I am all about making your own snacks and treats. Making your own just means that you’ll know exactly what is added to the product and you know there is no preservatives, refined sugar and that sort of rubbish.

I think it’s great to put time aside on the weekend to make some healthy snacks for the week but I also totally understand that life does get busy and sometimes this just doesn’t happen.

You may need to grab something from the supermarket to have as your snacks for the week or buy something while you on the go.

When choosing a healthy snack product next time, I have 3 main things for you to look out for and just be aware of.

1. Check it is made with all natural ingredients

Look through the ingredients and make sure everything is natural and there are no food chemicals added, these are usually stated as E numbers or it’ll be some weird chemical term that you probably would never have heard of before.

A good way to think about this, is for each ingredient you should be able to buy and eat on it’s own. It should be earth grown and not made in a factory.

2. Check there is no refined sugar

Loads of food products that we think are healthy actually just have straight up white sugar added to them.

I was looking at tinned tuna the other day and noticed that sugar was in the ingredients. Which is, firstly really bad and also just weird that it’s added to tinned tuna…..like why is there sugar in tuna??

Sugar is not just always stated as sugar, it has a lot of other sneaky names such as high fructose corn syrup (which is prob the worst type of sugar), maltodextrin, palm syrup, glucose, barley malt extract and loads more as well.

3. Be aware of how much natural sugar that is in these snack foods

With natural sugars, I mean sugar such as dates and other dried fruit, honey and those types of sugars. Which I definitely believe are a much better option – I use them in my healthy treats. But I think it is important to know there is a difference between a treat food that you have every now and then and a snack food that you usually have every day.

Especially if your goal is to lose body fat then eating dried fruit everyday, is something you should be careful of. Even for digestive reasons too, so many people now can not tolerate dried fruit and high amounts of fructose in one sitting which is the basis of a low FODMAP diet.

Always look for a snack that has the least amount of total sugar in it, just by comparing the numbers in the 100g column of the table.

Comparison of Common Snack Foods

1. Muesli/Nut Bars

Be aware of how much sugar is in some of these bars. The brand that I have here, for one bar it contains 8.1 grams of sugar, which is equal to about 2 teaspoons in just one bar. That’s a lot of sugar in just one small snack that would probably leave you feeling hungry again soon after.

2. Crackers

These sprouted oat crackers while seem pretty good on the front of the packaging but when you look at the ingredient list, they have brown sugar added to them….which is just silly really. They also contain antioxidant 307b which is a food chemical.

They are made with sunflower oil which is very inflammatory in the body and can contain trans fats once it is processed.

I also have some rice crackers, and these do only contain natural ingredients which is good but there is again vegetable oils added. And also these are pretty much just carbs so not a lot of nutrients in these, no protein, fat which means won’t fill you up for long and not the best as a snack.

3. Bliss Balls

Lastly I have bliss balls which really are taking over the snack isles and are very on trend right now in the health food space.

The first one I have here is the brand Tasty – the flavour is almond cashew, which I chose because I thought it would contain the least amount of sugar compared to the other flavours.

INGREDIENTS: Dates (63%) Sunflower Seeds (17%) Cashews (8%) Almonds (8%) Coconut (3.5%) A Hint of Natural Flavour.

When looking in the 100g column the sugar is 46.6% which is a lot of sugar, and that’s just because it’s mostly made of dates, so if you not about go do a big workout or play sport this might not be ideal for you.

I also have another brand by CleanPaleo who kindly reached out to sponsor this video as they have just launched their new Better Balls in NZ.

This is the Ginger and Turmeric flavour. The ingredients in this one are Sunflower seeds, pepita (pumpkin seeds), almonds, manuka honey, dried coconut, coconut oil, ground ginger and turmeric.

When looking at the 100g the sugar is only 16.7% which is a lot less than the first one, and that’s mostly due to the fact the CleanPaleo one doesn’t have dried fruit and it’s mostly made up of sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds.

And that means that is also higher in fat and protein so it will keep you fuller for longer, it would be ideal for during the day when you are at work or your on the go and you not necessarily being super active.

Not all healthy snack foods are as healthy as they may seem. It is so important that you read the ingredient list and have a look at the nutrition table to see what is actually in the product and determine whether it is the right product for you.

I hope you all found the tips helpful and of course let me know in the comments if you have any questions at all.

Thanks CleanPaleo for partnering with us on this post and video. We only partner with brands that we LOVE and are excited to share with our amazing community 😊

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Prepared food that’s healthy too

It’s a common ploy. You walk down the grocery store aisle and are bombarded with “all natural” and “immunity boosting” claims on boxes, bags, and bottles.

With so many enthusiastic labels shouting out to you, how can you tell which packaged foods are healthy and which ones are nutritional nightmares?

Use our savvy shopper tips to choose healthy versions of 11 common snacks, meals, and drinks.

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Breakfast cereal

Most cereals are similar in serving size and calories but differ in fiber and sugar content, says American Dietetic Association spokesperson, Keri Gans, RD.

Buy those with at least 5 grams of fiber per serving and less than 12 grams of sugar per serving. The only way sugar in cereal is good for you is if it comes from dried fruit, and not in the form of high fructose corn syrup, molasses, or honey, Gans says.

In general, the fewer the ingredients the better (for example, shredded wheat is usually just that). Stay as close to 5% of your age group’s

recommended daily allowance (RDA) of sodium as possible, and definitely don’t consume more than 20% with your cereal.

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Bread

Look for bread with no more than 100 calories and 150 milligrams of sodium per slice, and at least 3 grams of fiber (which rules out white bread).

And not all wheat bread is healthy. “Just because something says it might have whole-wheat flour in it doesn’t mean it’s 100% whole wheat,” says Gans. Instead, look for breads that say, “100% whole grains.”

And it’s worthwhile to read the ingredient list. Whole wheat, oats, or other whole grains should be the first ingredient, as opposed to refined flours. If whole-wheat flour is listed first and followed by other flours, that bread will be lower in fiber. Limit molasses and other sweeteners too.

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Snack bars

Pay attention to the protein content, along with the calories, fat, sugar, and fiber, in these portable noshes. The best buys have at least 5 grams of protein and 3 grams of fiber, less than 10 grams of sugar, and no more than 200 calories, if it’s a snack.

It can contain 300 calories if it’s a meal, says Gans, and 8 to 10 grams of protein is fine, but 20 grams is probably too much. Limit yourself to about 10 grams of total fat, and no more than 1 gram of saturated fat, but also check where the fat is coming from. “Nuts are the best source of fat in a snack bar,” Gans says.

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Microwave meals

Even low-cal options can contain more than 30% of your daily sodium. “You need to compare brand to brand, because most frozen dinners are going to have more salt than they should,” Gans says. “Look for the ones with the smallest percentage of daily value.”

Also, fat and calorie content is an issue with these meals. They can include unsaturated fats from olive oil and salmon but not saturated fat from cream or butter. Also aim for less than 500 calories. And since this is a meal, make sure you have 10 grams of protein or more per serving.

But bear in mind that you’re probably not going to get enough veggies from a frozen dinner, so enjoy a side salad too.

How to choose healthy snacks from the supermarket

All parents have seen their kids come running to them from school or sports practices looking for something to eat. This is a crucial time to teach healthy snacking habits to your kids, and even a few basic cooking skills if they are a bit older. Here are some ways to make sure your children have a healthy snacking habit.

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Encourage snacking

Kids have smaller stomachs and can get hungrier quite a few times in the day. They normally tend to eat smaller portions more often. You do not need to worry as this is a common trend among children and is perfectly healthy. This also teaches them how to incorporate healthy eating habits on a daily basis. If the kids are aware of the fact that snacking is allowed, they will eat just until they are no longer stuffed and judge when they eat by when they actually feel hungry. You should also keep healthy choices close to you. When the kid is hungry, he/she will search the closet as it is an instinctive choice. Allow healthy snacking by keeping healthy food close to your kids’ reach, which is easily accessible to him/her when the need arises.

Keep things simple

Most children love an easy snack that they can just take and go wherever they want. Keep fresh cut-up fruits and vegetables in the refrigerator. The children can then grab them whenever they want without having to wash the snack first, peeling and asking the parents for help. Moreover, all the kids accept that things seem more attractive with the option of a dipping sauce. This is also a good way to get different food groups within a small snack. For example, you can give the kid cut-up veggies with some hummus or ranch dip, apples with peanut butter or graham crackers with yogurt.

Choose the whole grain options

Whenever possible, keep things whole grain. This will provide more nutrients to your kid, and will also make them feel fuller for a long while and as a result, they will not ask for snacks a lot. Also, buy fascinating and different nuts and fruits from the supermarket. Take your kid with you to the grocery store and make them choose a new fruit or any other healthy food. This will make them more excited about experimenting with new foods and they may even find a new favourite snack to eat.

How to choose healthy snacks from the supermarket

Want to make smart food choices but confused by all the health claims, messages and logos on foods? Use these tips to avoid the brain strain while shopping online or in-person at the store.

    Read food nutrition labels, even for so-called “healthier” foods. Ingredients and nutrient content can vary a lot by brand and preparation. When there’s more than one choice, compare labels. Choose the item with the lowest amounts of sodium, saturated fat, trans fat and added sugars.

Beware of sneaky ingredients. For example, sodium and added sugars go by many different names, making it harder to tell just how much is in there.

Choose frozen, canned or dried produce when fresh isn’t available or practical. It can be just as nutritious as fresh, and will last longer. Choose canned fruit packed in water, light syrup or its own juice. With canned and frozen vegetables, choose the product with the lowest amount of sodium. Heavy syrups and sauces can add unwanted ingredients to your healthy fruits and veggies.

Choose whole-grain foods. Lots of products claim to be, but there’s a simple way to know for sure. Look for the word “whole-grain” (or “whole” followed by the grain name) as the first item in the ingredients list. And we’re talking more than just bread. Include crackers, cereals, tortillas, pasta and other grain foods in your whole-grain quest.

  • Look for the Heart-Check mark to quickly and easily identify foods that can be part of an overall healthy eating plan. When it’s on the label, you know the product has been certified by the American Heart Association to meet specific science-based nutrition requirements. The Heart-Check is easy to spot and takes some of the guesswork out of comparing Nutrition Facts label information.
  • Keep in mind, not all red hearts or check marks on food packages are the trusted Heart-Check mark! Look for the American Heart Association name if you’re unsure. And, the Heart-Check program is voluntary. That means not every heart-healthy food, such as fruits and vegetables, will apply for a Heart-Check mark. But you won’t find the Heart-Check on desserts, candy, chips and other foods that do not meet our nutrition requirements.

    Find out more about how the Heart-Check mark works.

    Written by American Heart Association editorial staff and reviewed by science and medicine advisers. See our editorial policies and staff.

    How to choose healthy snacks from the supermarket

    Looking for the best healthy snacks to fuel your energy? You’re in luck. The novel coronavirus crisis is changing consumer behavior, increasing the demand for vegan and vegetarian foods. “There is sustained interest in eating more plant protein, while at the same time many people report eating less animal protein,” Ali Webster, Ph.D., RD told Everyday Health.

    More and more consumers are going vegan or gluten-free. Some are replacing their go-to snacks with healthier options that support immune function and gut health. Others prefer keto- and paleo-friendly foods like grain-free snack puffs or egg white chips, notes Everyday Health. With the rise in remote work, people are more open to trying new snacks. They are also looking for ways to reduce waste and make more sustainable choices, reports Food Processing.

    It’s no secret that snacking can make or break your diet. Some snacks are chock-full of vitamins, minerals, fiber, or protein, while others contain nothing but empty calories and sugar. Your best bet is to opt for whole, unprocessed foods. Make a habit out of reading the labels and reach for snacks that support your health goals. Here are our top picks for 2021!

    Snack on probiotic-rich foods for gut health

    How to choose healthy snacks from the supermarket

    The human gut boasts about 100 trillion bacteria, reports a 2013 review featured in the journal Therapeutic Advances in Gastroenterology. These microorganisms regulate every system in your body, including digestion, metabolism, and immune function. They also have a major impact on brain health and mental well-being. Many conditions, such as Crohn’s disease, obesity, diabetes, and colorectal cancer, may be associated with imbalances in the gut microbiome, according to the above review.

    One way to keep your gut healthy is to snack on foods rich in probiotics. Yogurt, kefir, and probiotic fruit bars are all great choices, says Everyday Health. The Institute of Food Technologists recommends fermented foods, such as Chobani Complete yogurts. You can also snack on pickles or fermented vegetable chips.

    Probiotic kefir, for example, isn’t just healthy but low in calories, too. One cup has roughly 140 calories and a whopping 11 grams of protein, according to MyFoodData. You’ll also get 20 grams of grams, 2 grams of fat, and 23% of the daily recommended calcium intake. Just make sure you choose sugar-free varieties. Mix kefir with berries, mashed bananas, chia seeds, or oats for extra flavor and nutrition.

    Chickpea snacks are loaded with fiber and protein

    How to choose healthy snacks from the supermarket

    Rich in protein, chickpeas can be a good alternative to meat and fish. After all, there’s a reason why they’re used in vegan burgers and other meat substitutes. As Samantha Cassetty, RD told Everyday Health, “Few people eat enough veggies or pulses.” Chickpea chips, bars, and cereals make it easier to get more vegetables in your diet without compromising on flavor.

    Depending on the brand, chickpea chips boast around 140 calories, 3 grams of protein, 15 grams of carbs, and 8 grams of fat per serving (1 ounce), reports MyFoodData. This snack can also be a great source of fiber, iron, and calcium, and other key nutrients. The downside is that store-bought chickpea snacks are often high in sodium and may contain artificial flavors.

    Looking for a healthier alternative? Try roasted chickpeas. All you need is a can of chickpeas, olive oil, salt, and spices. BBC Good Food suggests using smoked paprika, cumin, cayenne pepper, and coriander for extra flavor, but that’s a matter of personal taste. Simply toss the chickpeas with salt, olive oil, and spices into a bowl, transfer them to a baking tray, and cook for about half an hour or until crunchy.

    Sprouted almonds are chock-full of good fats

    How to choose healthy snacks from the supermarket

    Touted as one of the best healthy snacks of the year, sprouted almonds are a powerhouse of nutrition (via Forbes). Sprouting reduces the levels of phytic acid, calcium oxalate, and other nutrients in nuts, explains Washington College. As a result, it makes the nutrients in food easier to digest and break down.

    While you can buy sprouted almonds from most grocery stores, it’s healthier to germinate them at home. Store-bought versions may contain added sugar, excess sodium, preservatives, and other fillers. The experts at Washington College recommend soaking the almonds in water overnight. Strain them in the morning and then let them dry. Rinse them, let them dry again, and repeat. Eat them immediately or roast them for extra crunchiness.

    One ounce of sprouted almonds has 163 calories, 6 grams of protein, 11 grams of fat, and 6 grams of carbs, including 3.5 grams of fiber (per MyFoodData). If you choose to roast them, you can blend them into almond butter and enjoy it as a breakfast spread. You can even turn them into sprouted almond flour or almond milk, says Washington College. Cashews, sunflower seeds, and other raw nuts or seeds can be sprouted, too.

    The gluten-free craze is still going strong

    How to choose healthy snacks from the supermarket

    The Institute of Food Technologists reports that gluten-free fruit bars, chocolate cookies, and other snacks are still in high demand. But just because something is gluten-free doesn’t mean it’s healthy. Potato chips or French fries, for example, contain no gluten (depending on how they were made), but they can still have large amounts of fat, sugar, and sodium.

    The best healthy snacks are minimally processed or contain just one or two ingredients. If you decide to go gluten-free, reach for whole foods. Fruits, vegetables, nuts, legumes, fish, and meat are all gluten-free. You can also snack on rice cakes, quinoa chips, or chickpea puffs. However, if they were made in a factory that also processes wheat, rye, or barley, they may contain traces of gluten. Make sure the label says “gluten-free,” especially if you have Celiac disease or wheat allergy.

    Gluten itself isn’t harmful for healthy people, notes Harvard Medical School. Current evidence doesn’t support the purported benefits of going gluten-free. Moreover, just 1% of the population has Celiac disease. However, you might be sensitive to gluten if you experience bloating, rashes, or indigestion after eating foods containing this protein.

    All in all, gluten-free foods are more or less healthy, depending on the ingredients used. Processed gluten-free snacks are often lower in fiber and higher in sugar or fat than their conventional counterparts, says Harvard Medical School. Plus, they may have lower levels of iron and other nutrients.

    Our expert advice will help you decode the ingredients lists and nutrition labels of 5 common grocery items

    The simplest way to make shopping for healthier food a snap, experts say, is to fill most of your cart with fresh and unprocessed items such as fruits and vegetables.

    “In general, I usually recommend people eat as close to nature as possible,” says Dana Hunnes, R.D., Ph.D., an adjunct assistant professor at the Fielding School of Public Health at UCLA.

    But most of us eat at least some processed items, and choosing healthy packaged food can be challenging because nutrition labels and ingredients lists aren’t always easy to decode.

    If you’re looking for reasonably healthy packaged food—with ingredients lists that some call “clean”—Consumer Reports’ nutrition experts recommend that you keep the following strategies in mind when shopping:

    Compare labels and ingredients lists. Look at different brands in the same food category. In general, it’s smart to go for the one with the simplest, shortest list of ingredients. Check nutrition labels to determine how much sodium, sugars, and fats are in the items you’re considering.

    Buy organic. Choosing certified organic foods can help you avoid many artificial additives and antibiotics, which aren’t allowed under the organic rules.

    Go basic. Typically, when it comes to healthy packaged food, the plainer the flavor, the simpler (and often shorter) the ingredients list. For example, unflavored Quaker oatmeal has just one ingredient—rolled oats—but the instant apples and cinnamon version has well over a dozen.

    Keep in mind, though, that all products with simple ingredients lists aren’t necessarily healthy packaged foods. Lay’s Classic potato chips, for example, have just three ingredients—potatoes, vegetable oil, and salt—but they’re heavy on fat and sodium.

    If you’re shopping for crackers, frozen dinners, pizza, soup, or cereal, our experts also advise the following:

    Crackers

    What to look for: Choose lower-sodium products that have whole grain as the first ingredient. Don’t be put off by long lists for multigrain crackers; they can contain many grains and seeds that lengthen the list in a good way.

    What to skip: Partially hydrogenated oils are a source of trans fats, which can increase your risk of heart attack and stroke. The Food and Drug Administration has required companies to remove partially hydrogenated oils foods by June 2018, and though many have already stopped using them, you may still want to check nutrition labels. You may also want to avoid brands with high fructose corn syrup, a highly processed sweetener.

    Frozen Dinners

    What to look for: This can be pretty heavily processed stuff, so don’t expect short ingredients lists. Your best choices are products that provide the biggest nutrition punch, so look for simple mixes of protein, vegetables, and whole grains.

    What to skip: Avoid products with refined grains—such as wheat flour rather than whole-wheat flour—and additives such as modified food starch, gums, and artificial colors and flavors. It’s also smart to avoid products in the freezer case with a lot of sodium, saturated fat, and/or sugars, so check and compare labels.

    Soups

    What to look for: A long ingredients list on a packaged soup isn’t necessarily a bad thing—as long as it reads like a homemade recipe. “I’m fine if there’s 20 different vegetables in that soup but you recognize every single one,” Hunnes says. With reduced-sodium and so-called “healthy” soup brands, be sure to read and compare labels, because many have additives to boost flavor and texture.

    What to skip: Look out for list lengtheners like modified food starches, unspecified “flavorings,” coloring, high fructose corn syrup, and the flavor-booster monosodium glutamate, or MSG, (which might be hidden in ingredients like hydrolyzed vegetable protein). Anyone with kidney problems should avoid sodium substitutes such as potassium chloride, sometimes used in “reduced-sodium” brands.

    Frozen Pizza

    What to look for: Frozen pizza is a complex food with an unavoidably long ingredients list. Look for products with less processed toppings—sliced tomatoes instead of tomato sauce, for example—to reduce the number of ingredients. Sodium levels in frozen pizza can be astronomical, but opting for vegetable toppings rather than sausage and extra cheese can help lighten the salt load.

    What to skip: Steer clear of too many preservatives and gums, as well as artificial color and flavor. And if you want to avoid nitrates—which are used to cure meat and boost shelf life, and may lead to the formation of cancer-causing compounds—skip pizzas for meat lovers.

    Cereal

    What to look for: Choose brands that have whole grains high on a short ingredients list. It doesn’t get much better than one-ingredient shredded wheat. Be aware that fortified cereals will typically have much longer lists and might cost more than those without added vitamins and minerals.

    What to skip: Some cereals, especially those for children, are loaded with food coloring. And watch out for healthy sounding products that contain multiple natural sweeteners—like evaporated cane sugar and honey. It’s healthiest to limit sugars in cereal to no more than 8 grams per serving.

    Shop Like a Nutritionist

    Eating well isn’t always easy—or fun. On the ‘Consumer 101′ TV show, Consumer Reports’ expert, Amy Keating, heads into the grocery store to show you how to make healthy decisions when it comes to food.