Few don't enjoy a cookie now and then...be they thin or crisp, soft and chewy, filled with cream, or rich and buttery. There's a choice for everyone. Now the cookies in the supermarket aisle have a plethora of healthier options than traditional cookies.
So, while no one can really call cookies "healthy", that doesn't mean you can't make a healthier choice the next time your browsing the cookie aisle.
Helpful Cookie Buying Hints
Here are a few pointers to keep in mind the next time you're cookie-shopping if you know you don't have time to bake, and want to buy a healthier brand name cookie.
- Know what you want. If you have diabetes or other blood sugar concerns, certainly the sugar-free choices are your best bet. If not, however, calories or saturated fat content may take priority over sugar content for you.
- Keep portions small. You'll notice the serving sizes of many cookies are fairly small - usually two cookies. So, while 100 calories doesn't seem too bad, if you're sitting down with 4, 6, or more cookies at a time, those calories add up. If stopping after 1 or 2 cookies is just too difficult for you, those little 100-calorie snack packs were made for you.
- Sugar free foods have calories. Keep in mind that the words "sugar free" do not equal "calorie free". Cookies with no sugar still contain calories, and sometimes as many or more than those made with sugar. Don't get into the mindset of, "Sugar-free means unlimited amounts".
- Look for healthy bonuses. These days, cookies are filled with more than just chocolate chips and creamy fillings. For an added nutritional benefit, albeit small, when you're quelling that sweet tooth look for cookies containing nuts, rolled oats, dried fruit, flax seeds, whole wheat flour, or other nutrient-packed ingredients.
Important Note on GMOs in Cookies
First of all, it's important to note that sugar beets are one of the leading raw materials used in making refined sugar in the United States.
According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, 95 percent of sugar beets are genetically modified - that number is up from 60 percent in 2009.
If you are concerned about GMOs, you may wish to make a special note to look for organic cookies.
Organic cookies won't necessarily contain less calories or fat than non-organic, but you can avoid several genetically modified ingredients.
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