It is hard to imagine processed foods as healthy. We’ve heard it over and over how these packaged foods contain chemicals, additives, and other ingredients that make them tastier but at the same make us unhealthy.

But fresh foods may not be within our budget. So as we buy these processed goods, here are some tips that can help you make them a bit healthier:

Love to eat oats or cereal for breakfast?

Instead of simply putting oats or cereal in a bowl with milk, add fruits. You already know that fruits are healthy and provide you with vitamins and minerals. Other choices include cinnamon and honey, which are both providers of antioxidants and can help boost your immune system.

Speaking of milk, you probably think low-fat is the better option.

Whether it is low-fat or non-fat, you should go for milk and other dairy products that contain full fat. This may come as a surprise, but full-fat milk and dairy products are associated with lower risks for diabetes and obesity.

If you’re a diabetic, go for sugar-free products.

But if you’re not, avoid these processed foods. Whether they are snacks, yogurt, or ice cream, sugar-free should not be an option for you since they contain sweeteners that can harm your health more than refined sugar can.

Add natural foods to packaged meals.

If you eat noodles, soup, or any other processed food, make sure to throw in some corn, beans, and diced carrots to make it healthier. Doing so can give you vitamins and minerals, along with fiber and protein.

Processed foods usually come with fructose and other varieties of sugars.

They're fast and convenient but they're not innately healthy
They’re fast and convenient but they’re not innately healthy

Add more fiber and omega-3 fatty acids to your diet. Next time you drink soda, use condiments, and consume those that are rich in sugar, eat fatty fish, flaxseed, walnuts, and avocados to reverse the harmful effects of the sugar foods.

Buying canned goods? Remove the liquid in the can and don’t consume it.

The liquid is loaded with salt to preserve the food, so make sure you throw it away. If you don’t know yet, too much sodium or salt in the body can cause coronary heart disease among many others.

Some processed foods are not bad, such as tea, frozen vegetables, canned coconut milk, dried foods, and olive oil. Make sure you still read the label to avoid getting cheated on by your favorite brand. Don’t immediately grab the product just because it says it’s natural and has healthy ingredients.