Unjunk Your Junk Food

Unjunk Your Junk Food: Healthy Alternatives to Conventional Snacks by Andrea Donsky and Randy Boyer is basically a cheat sheet on what snacks are healthier for you to eat. The authors challenge you, the reader, to make changes in your diet in order to become healthier without feeling deprived of your favorite junk food. Unjunk Your Junk Food is a quick guide that shows you healthy alternative to your favorite conventional brand junk food. And by junk food I mean everything from potato chips, dips, cookies, cakes, pop, soda, and my personal vice--chocolate!

The authors begin their book by outlying how to eat healthier junk food. How to look for the worst ingredients for you to avoid and how to look for ingredients that are better for you. They offer over 170 pages of alternatives to your conventional junk food. And they tell you why the conventional junk food is on their bad list and how the choices they suggest are better. They also identify the Worst Ingredients that you should avoid including: High Fructose Corn Syrup, anything listed as “partially hydrogenated” or “hydrogenated,” MSG, artificial flavoring, artificial coloring, artificial sweeteners, and preservatives.

I found that this book to be enlightening just by seeing what some of the worst offenders are. I have been thinking long and hard about changing our eating habits as I am trying to lose weight and now that my kids are getting older they are asking for more snacks and I want to give them options that I feel good about them eating.

I was disappointed that many of the items that the authors suggest are organic and thus are much more expensive than their counterparts at the store. Being on a limited budget I don’t know that I can “unjunk” all of our junk food, but I can be more aware of what we are eating and try to keep the worst offenders out of our house.

That being said, there were some things that the authors suggested that I already do buy---one example was ice cream (something my hubby, kids and I love). The authors suggest that the Savvy pick is for Breyers Smooth and Dreamy ½ fat ice cream as your best pick. I have a tub of that in my freezer right now! J I was also disappointed in that many of the items they suggest, they do not sell here where I live. I grocery shop at Kroger, Aldi and Walmart. Many of the items the authors suggest are not available here because of lack of interest.

I did take several things away from reading this book though. I feel I have a better understanding of some of the worst offenders when it comes to ingredients in junk food--can someone say artificial butter flavor among others. I feel like I know what to look for and not look for when I look at nutritional labels on items. I feel like I can make better choices as to what I feed my kids, even if I can’t afford to buy all organic or all natural. I can make better choices, maybe not the best choices according to the authors but better ones that are more informed.

If you are looking for a quick reference guide to what junk foods to avoid or to substitute, then Unjunk Your Junk Food: Healthy Alternatives to Conventional Snacks is for you!

Disclaimer: I received this book for free from the publishers in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are my own


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