In the supermarket, every day feels like April 1st. Here’s a sampling of the latest tricks.
Yes, there’s some avocado in Hidden Valley Avocado Ranch Dressing. But the bottle basically contains a mix of water and oil. Less than 2 percent is dried avocado.
What explains the avocado-green tint? A mix of Blue 1, Yellow 6, and Yellow 5 food dyes, of course.
What else are they hiding in that valley?
“Love your juice. Love your life,” says Welch’s Super Berry Juice with Antioxidant Vitamin C 150% Daily Value.
Wow. Those super berries must have supplied loads of vitamin C!
No, silly. Read the fine print: “Flavored blend of Concord and other grape, aronia and mangosteen juices from concentrate with other natural flavors and added ingredients.”
We’re talking mostly grape juice plus who-knows-how-little aronia and mangosteen and some added vitamin C.
Gotta love Welch’s marketing department.
“Grab some goodness,” implores Del Monte Fruit & Chia Peaches in Strawberry Dragon Fruit FLAVORED Chia. See the pictures of fruit on the label? Other than the peaches, they’re just for show.
That’s what “flavored” means. You get only a flavor…and some carmine (red color from insects) to make it look like you’re getting strawberries.
Not that Del Monte is trying to fool anyone. Nah.
“Nutritious deliciousness,” says Oprah’s O That’s Good Creamy Parmesan Pasta…with a Twist of White Beans. “We’ve replaced some of the cream with a smooth white bean puree, increasing the number of veggies while keeping all of the savory, cheesy flavor in every bite.”
Yes, a “twist” of white beans is better than none. But you’re still getting enough cream and cheese to supply a third of a day’s saturated fat and sodium in each 280-calorie (one-cup) serving. And that’s if you stop at just a third of the package.
Do the beans make it nutritious? The manufacturer—in this case, Kraft Heinz—gets to decide.
“New with probiotics,” boasts Kellogg’s Special K Nourish Berries & Peaches Real Fruit & Yogurty Pieces Cereal.
Who can resist “pieces” of hydrogenated palm kernel oil, sugar, and yogurt powder that’s been heat-treated (which kills the yogurt’s live cultures)?
And what is Nourish’s added probiotic (Bifidobacterium lactis HN019) good for, anyway? Not much. Lucky for Kellogg that “probiotics” sounds like the answer to whatever GI problem ails you. How special.
Simply Skinny Roasted Garlic & Sea Salt Mashed Potatoes may look like a potato-loving dieter’s dream.
Surprise! A half-cup serving has just 10 fewer calories than the company’s regular Garlic Mashed Potatoes.
What’s behind the “simply skinny” claim? Apparently, it’s that the potatoes have “40% less fat.” (That amounts to a trivial 2 ½ fewer grams.)
Memo to Simply: Less fat doesn’t lead to skinny. Only fewer calories do.
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