NUTRITIONISTA’S BOTTOM LINE – WHAT IS THE HEALTHIEST KIND OF CHIPS?
Alright, kids. This is kind of a tough one. In general, I think chips tend to contain lots of empty calories, but sometimes you gotta get that salty crunch, am I right?
First, we have to ask ourselves what kind of nutrition we can get from chips. We can’t get protein and we can’t really get good fat. In fact, a lot of chips have the BAD kind of fact as well as the WORST kind of fat—trans fat. We CAN get a few whole grain carbs, hopefully in the form of fiber.
So a good chip will have whole grain (fiber), the good kind of fat, and be fairly low calorie (since they’re not going to be super filling). Which chip fits the bill? Let’s look at some of Mary’s picks below…
- Multigrain pita chips (I used Stacy’s brand): 140 calories per serving (1 oz), 5g fat with .5g saturated, 2g fiber. Not bad. Can we do better?
- Terra chips: 150 calories per serving (1 oz, or about 14 chips), 9g fat with 1g saturated, 3g fiber. Alright, a little more fiber, but a lot more fat (though not the bad kind).
- Baked (I used Lays brand): 110 calories per serving (1 oz, or about 11 chips), 1.5g fat with 0g saturated, 2g fiber. Not bad. Not bad at all.
But you know what I like to satisfy that need for crunchy, salty bites? Popcorn! You can eat three cups of air-popped popcorn for 90 calories, less than 1.5g fat with 0g saturated, and over 3g fiber. That seems like a good deal to me. I add nutritional yeast for a little bit of flavor (I swear, it tastes like cheese).
I also like crunching on green bean chips (130 calories, 6g fat with 0g saturated, and 3g fiber in a cup). You can get them at Trader Joe’s and they’re really delish.
Bottom line: for that crispity, crunchity urge, try air-popped popcorn with a little bit of salt & pepper and nutritional yeast if you like it. If that just won’t cut it, try baked chips or actual veggie crisps, like green bean or snap pea chips. My goal for the next year is to get a dehydrator so I can make my own chips with sweet potatoes and other healthy veggies.
WHAT KIND OF CHIPS ARE THE HEALTHIEST?
Dare potato chips even be in the running? Sure, we enjoy them, but if we’re sticking to a healthy daily diet, what should we not feel guilty about? Here are the ones I’m thinking of:
- Multigrain (Sun Chips)
- Multigrain pita (hehe)
- Veggie (Terra)
- Multigrain baked veggie (just kidding)
Alright sister. We await your answer.