Beth Warren Nutrition Blog

Why I'm NOT a Fan of Healthy Cookies/Muffins

by Beth Warren May 7, 2021

Are things in life free?


And neither is any food product with the word "free" either.
So, when someone comes to me asking "Are these 'healthy' muffins/cookies good to eat?"
or see a product that says "...-FREE"-

I cringe.

Because I think, "What's the catch?"

Of course, if you enjoy any of these food items, by all means eat them. BUT, I'm not a fan of manipulative marketing that does not tell the whole story. Whatever you choose to eat should be from a place of an educated choice.

Here are a few things to consider before taking the free way out:
1. "Free" usually means something else was added or increased. For example, fat-free typically means more salt and/or sugar; sugar-free typically means more salt and/or fat and/or artificial sweeteners have been added.

2. "Healthy" is an arbitrary term. It has no regulated definition when it comes to defining a food product.

3. Think if a "healthy" item makes you feel like you can eat more or if actually does make you eat more.

4. Healthy or "not healthy" cookies/cakes/muffins are all the same from a macronutrient standpoint. For example, a carb is a carb and a fat is a fat whether or not if its from a less processed source like maple syrup or good 'ole sugar. In other words, they still "count" despite they're being "healthy" (your words, not mine!)

5. Ask yourself if eating "healthy muffins/cookies" makes you feel other options are "bad". In other words, does it promote a poor relationship/feeling/outlook on ALL foods?

6. A "healthy" muffin/cake/cookie should NOT substitute a poor eating behavior, such as eating cookies with coffee in the morning as a habit in the place of a nutrient dense breakfast with a balance of what your body needs in the morning: protein and fiber.

Of course, once in a while it's nice to treat yourself. But that's the whole point: a treat, is a treat, is a treat, healthy or not healthy (NOT good or bad).


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