Trail mixes are hot. You’d think we were a nation of hikers and bikers who need to gulp down a lot of calories in just a few bites.
No doubt, some people grab a bag of Emerald Tropical Blend Trail Mix and hit the road (though most likely in their car). After all, the “delicious blend of fruit, nuts & chunks of granola” has just 130 calories, according to the Nutrition Facts panel.
Except that those Facts apply to a one-ounce serving—a little less than half the non-resealable bag. Eat the whole bag (it holds just half a cup) and you’re up to 300 calories.
And the mix isn’t even mostly fruit (plus added sugar) and nuts. The first ingredient is “granola clusters” (label-speak for oats, sugars, oil, flour, etc.). Want trail mix? Make your own.
Make you own healthy trail mix by combining:
-4 cups Kashi Go Lean or other 100% whole grain cereal – look for cereal with fewer than 250 calories and at least 3g fiber per serving
-1 cup unsalted, roasted nuts and/or seeds – almonds, walnuts, cashews, pecans, peanuts, sunflower, or pumpkin or a combination of these
-1 cups dried fruit – raisins, cherries, apricots, apple pear, cranberries – chop the larger pieces
Nutritional info for 1/2 cup: 170 calories; 8g fat (1g sat fat); 8g protein; 24g carbs; 6g fiber; 40mg sodium.
Other relevant links:
- Many companies are turning nuts into candy and pretending it’s healthy! See: Sugar in Food: Are These Nut Products Healthy or Just Well-Marketed Junk Food?
- Peanut butter alternatives with less saturated fat and more vitamins and minerals. See: Nut, Seed, and Soy
- Can eating nuts help you live longer? See: Go Nuts with a Handful of Them