Trying to be health conscious when shopping can increasingly seem like a minefield with so many options. And often consumers are left baffled by confusingly similar products.
So when it comes to some of the most common confusing doppelgängers like Greek yogurt Vs Greek style or organic Vs free-range, what exactly is the difference, and which should you choose?
Nutritionist Yvonne O’Shaughnessy tells us exactly what to look out for.
Greek yogurt VS Greek style
Greek style yogurt is strained twice where as Greek yogurt is strained three times, making it thicker and more concentrated by eliminating the whey and other liquids from regular yogurt. Greek yogurts are low in sugar, as the majority of sugar has been taken out with the whey in the straining process. It is also higher in protein, containing as much as 17g protein, compared with around 9g in regular yogurt, and has less sodium. Greek style yogurt can also come with some hidden nasties such as fructose syrup, modified maize starch and pork gelatine in an attempt to mimic the consistency of the Greek yogurt.
The Winner – Greek Yogurt
Dark Chocolate VS Cacao
Cacao is in its natural healthiest state, while dark chocolate will have sugar added to it. Cacao is used to make dark chocolate, but then extra ingredients are added to it like soy, isoflavones, sugar, etc, and it’s heat treated, so many natural health properties are lost unless you are buying a raw dark chocolate.
The Winner – Cacao
No added Sugar vs Sugar-Free
If something is labelled sugar-free, you know it contains less than 0.5g sugar, both natural and added, however it may also contain artificial sweeteners. Meanwhile, no added sugar products contain naturally occurring sugar but do not have any added sugars during packaging or processing of the product. In addition, no added sugar items do not contain processed sugars, they only contain natural plant sugars.
The Winner – No Added Sugar
Crème Fraîche vs sour cream
Both are made with pasteurised milk inoculated with specific bacteria cultures. However, crème fraîche is fattier and thicker, it is more stable and it can be added as a thickener to hot soups, etc, without fear of curdling. Sour cream is tangier, lower in fat, and has a more liquid texture. It is also less expensive and higher in protein. In addition, if you are trying to reduce fat in your diet, then sour cream has 18-20% fat content in comparison to crème fraîche which has about 30-45% fat content!
The Winner – Sour Cream
Granola vs Muesli
The main difference between muesli and granola is that while both are made up of grains, seeds, nuts and dried fruits, muesli is unbaked while granola is baked along with sweetener and oil to bind the ingredients together. The sweetness in muesli comes from the dried fruit present but there are usually no added sweeteners. Granola also loses some of its nutrients during the baking process.
The Winner – Muesli
Olive Oil vs Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
Both are made from olives, but the method of extracting the oil is different. Olive oil is heated to extract the oil, this means as it goes through this heat processing it will lose some of its natural benefits, such as nutrients and enzymes. Extra-virgin olive oil is cold-pressed and left unrefined. Regular olive oil lacks the important good fats, antioxidants and anti-inflammatories that make extra-virgin oil so special. Extra-virgin olive oil is high in omega 3s, which are important for heart health.
The Winner – Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
Free-Range Eggs Vs Organic Eggs
Organic birds are kept in smaller flocks than free-range hens. Organic hens are all reared on organic meal and grass and must have continuous daily access to the outdoors. There is also no routine use of antibiotics with organic hens; if they do get ill the withdrawal periods are much longer than with free-range birds. Organic housing units can be no bigger than 4,800 birds, whereas in free-range there can be up to 10,000 birds. There are also fewer organic birds per square metre than free-range birds.
The Winner – Organic Eggs
Wine Vs Organic Wine
The most basic difference between the two is that organic wine is wine made from organically farmed grapes. With organic wine the grapes have not been sprayed which is a huge bonus as pesticides are so bad for us, as they mimic oestrogen in our body. In addition, organic wine contains fewer sulphates.
The Winner – Organic Wine
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