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The 'Healthy' Breakfast That's Actually Full Of Sugar (VIDEO)

That's it. You've made the decision: From now on, you're going to eat healthier.

Your new regimen of saying goodbye to sugar and fat begins with breakfast, heralded as the most important meal of the day. But mornings can be hectic, pantries can be sparse and resolve can weaken. In an effort to eat healthier without spending much time in the kitchen, many people reach for the same early-morning staple: apple-cinnamon oatmeal... the instant variety.

It may seem like a safe bet (isn't oatmeal healthy?), but registered dietitian and author of The Everything Glycemic Index Cookbook, LeeAnn Weintraub, says that's not the full story.

"A lot of people believe that they're really doing themselves a favor by eating oatmeal in the morning," she says in the above video from the web series #OWNSHOW. "But... there's a lot of hidden sugar in an oatmeal like this."

Instead of reaching for the pre-made packet of apple and cinnamon, Weintraub suggests an oatmeal alternative that is just as quick and far less sugary.

"Look for plain oatmeals, plain instant oatmeal, and then add your own ingredients to it to flavor it up without the added sugar and additives," she says.

You don't even have to sacrifice your sweet tooth. "I love fresh fruit, like fresh berries, bananas," Weintraub says. "Unsweetened coconut... can add some nice texture. Something like a nut butter or some cinnamon [can] give it some great flavor."

The thought of adding something fatty like nut butter may seem strange for a healthy breakfast, but Weintraub says that it's actually quite beneficial.

"I actually really like the idea of adding nut butter to oatmeal because those healthy fats help balance out the carbohydrates in the oatmeal and keep you full longer after breakfast," she explains. "So, you're not crashing or going for a snack later in the morning."

More: Weintraub explains how to look at ingredient lists on seemingly healthy products like applesauce to see if they are secretly sugary.

Whole-wheat crackers, 8
bhofack/iStock/360/Getty Images
Up to 12 grams sugar

Source: Eat It to Beat It! by David Zinczenko
Crispy chicken and spinach salad, prepared in a restaurant
TBird59/iStock/360/Getty Images
Up to 13 grams sugar

Source: Eat It to Beat It! by David Zinczenko
Tomato basil soup, 1 can
molka/iStock/Thinkstock
Up to 13-22 grams sugar

Source: Eat It to Beat It! by David Zinczenko
Crunchy broccoli salad, 1/2 cup
ElenaFabbrili/iStock/Thinkstock
7 grams sugar

Source: Kraft recipes
Energy drinks, 8-ounce bottle*
Up to 21–30 grams
*Some energy drinks are sold in 16-ounce bottles

Source: University of California, Davis, Department of Nutrition fact sheet
Yogurt, single serving-size cup (usually 6 ounces)
moranaF/iStock/Thinkstock
Up to 25–34 grams of sugar

Source: Eat It to Beat It! by David Zinczenko
Coleslaw, 2 tablespoons
TheMalni/iStock/Thinkstock
Up to 12 grams of sugar

Source: Sugar Has 56 Names: A Shopper's Guide, by Robert H. Lustig, MD, MSL
Baked beans, 1/2 cup
Ju-Lee/iStock/Thinkstock
11–16 grams of sugar

Source: Sugar Has 56 Names: A Shopper's Guide, by Robert H. Lustig, MD, MSL
Beef jerky, 1 serving
bhofack2/iStock/Thinkstock
4–6 grams of sugar

Source: Sugar Has 56 Names: A Shopper's Guide, by Robert H. Lustig, MD, MSL
Vanilla almond milk, 1 cup
bhofack2/iStock/Thinkstock
Up to 14 grams of sugar
(Unsweetened almond milk: 0 grams sugar)

Source: Sugar Has 56 Names: A Shopper's Guide, by Robert H. Lustig, MD, MSL
Hamburger buns, 1 bun
sautepl/iStock/Thinkstock
Up to 3–6 grams

Source: Sugar Has 56 Names: A Shopper's Guide, by Robert H. Lustig, MD, MSL
Teriyaki marinade
Svetlana Kolpakova/Hemera/Thinkstock
Up to 8 grams sugar

Source: Eat It to Beat It! by David Zinczenko
Cereal bars, 1 bar
rzeszutek/iStock/Thinkstock
12 grams of sugar, on average

Source: Sugar Has 56 Names: A Shopper's Guide, by Robert H. Lustig, MD, MSL
Hot cereal, 1 envelope
AbbieImages/iStock/Thinkstock
Up to 7–12 grams

Source: Sugar Has 56 Names: A Shopper's Guide, by Robert H. Lustig, MD, MSL
Dark chocolate, 1 bar
Zakharova_Natalia/iStock/Thinkstock
Up to 16–21 grams
(You can find dark chocolate with a high percentage of cacao with as little as 5 grams of sugar)

Source: Eat It to Beat It! by David Zinczenko