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p.p1 {font-family:'Helvetica Neue LT Std', 'Helvetica', Arial, sans-serif; font-weight:normal; color: #121a31} Gluten FreeThis FDA-regulated claim is important for people with celiac disease (an autoimmune disorder) who can’t tolerate gluten, a protein found in many grains. However, “gluten free” doesn’t mean “good for you,” especially if the product is full of sugar, salt, and fat.

p.p1 {font-family:'Helvetica Neue LT Std', 'Helvetica', Arial, sans-serif; font-weight:normal; color: #121a31} High in AntioxidantsAntioxidants are chemicals that zap “free radicals” – molecules that can damage cells. Although antioxidants in their natural packaging inside fruits, veggies, and whole grains do help fight chronic disease, there’s very little support for added antioxidants providing similar health benefits. In fact, some studies found they were actually harmful to health.

p.p1 {font-family:'Helvetica Neue LT Std', 'Helvetica', Arial, sans-serif; font-weight:normal; color: #121a31} All NaturalThe “all natural” claim was invented by marketers. Although it sounds close to “organic,” it actually has no universally accepted definition, so products labeled “all natural” could contain hormones, pesticides, and all kinds of other bad stuff.

p.p1 {font-family:'Helvetica Neue LT Std', 'Helvetica', Arial, sans-serif; font-weight:normal; color: #121a31} OrganicAlthough the “organic” label tells you that at least some of the ingredients were produced without conventional pesticides, fertilizers, hormones, or antibiotics, it doesn’t mean the packaged item is healthy. Organic junk food is still junk food.

p.p1 {font-family:'Helvetica Neue LT Std', 'Helvetica', Arial, sans-serif; font-weight:normal; color: #121a31} Rich in Vitamin CWe know from UCSF’s Truth Tobacco Industry Documents archive that tobacco companies marketed sugary kids’ drinks as healthful by touting their added vitamin C. Some of these same brands still use Big Tobacco’s playbook to hook kids on their drinks. The truth is, vitaminC in a bottle of colorful sugar water is still, yep, unhealthy sugar water.

p.p1 {font-family:'Helvetica Neue LT Std', 'Helvetica', Arial, sans-serif; font-weight:normal; color: #121a31} IngredientsAs a general rule, look for simpler, shorter lists with ingredients you recognize. If you see lots of names that look like they belong in a chemistry textbook, it’s probably a less-than-healthy product.