In short, the answer is yes and no.
Granola is made by toasting rolled oats with other ingredients. The common ingredients are: nuts, dried fruit, oil, coconut, honey (or other sweeteners), and rice. So it sounds like this should be healthy, right? Well it really depends on the granola you choose and how much you eat!
When shopping for granola compare labels:
- Choose one that is lower in sugar (some have sugar as the first or second ingredient!)
- Choose one that is low in saturated fat (coconut is saturated fat and is found in many brands)
- Choose one that is lower in fat (some fat contents are extremely high from added oils, nuts and coconut).
- Choose a granola with a short ingredient list; some have many additives like cereal.
- For weight loss purposes, I usually recommend staying away from granola since it is very calorically dense.
- An average 1/4 cup portion has 150 calories. If you eat 1 cup full you will be consuming 600 calories and that’s without milk or yogurt!
- Try weighing out one portion of your granola to see what it actually measures as, since the contents often settle in the bag.
- Serve one portion over greek yogurt with berries and flaxseed for a satisfying breakfast or snack!
- Granola is a great food for those trying to gain weight.
- Try making your own granola so you can control the amount of fat and sugar that goes in.
- A good swap to save calories but still get a similar granola crunch is Kashi GoLean Crunch.
- Yogurt parfaits served at cafes with granola, are not always the healthiest option. They are usually made with sweetened yogurt, which combined with copious amounts of granola make it a high sugar choice. If you like yogurt parfaits, make sure to stick with plain yogurt and limit your granola portion.
Do you enjoy granola? Which brand do you like the best?