AHuffington Post article caused a viral explosion comparing everyday foods with the amount of sugar they had relative to a Krispy Kreme donut. Foods that are part of a healthy diet like Greek yogurt and whole grain cereals even got a bad wrap to the consumer seeing that they were equal to the sugars in more than 2 Krispy Kreme donuts.
With this in mind, the FDA is considering adding nutritional labeling regarding "added" sugars to products to help the consumer understand the nutrition nightmare of junk food versus healthy food products.
Products that have natural sugars, like fruits and vegetables, and are packed into food like Kind Bars may seem in total sugar but are nutritious due to them being compiled from real fruits and nuts. Hence, most candy bars have less nutrition than a Kind Bar.
For food to be "healthy," take into consideration the total number of calories, sugar, fat, fiber and protein they contain. One should never assume that one Starbucks Light Frappuccino weighing in at 188 calories has the same nutrient value as two Chobani Greek yogurts weighing in at 200 calories.
Basically, by no means is a calorie just a calorie. Some calories have benefit to the body while others are empty.
When looking at the healthiness of foods, calories are one way to start vetting which foods make your menu, but also fiber and protein are key. Fiber helps keep food moving along the inside of the body. To exemplify this further, take the number of fiber grams and multiply by 4 to get the total calories from fiber. Next subtract those calories for the total number of calories to see the net effect of that food on your caloric intake. Also take note of the total number of protein grams.
Protein is massively beneficial as it not only builds muscles but helps balance your hormones as well. One key hormone that protein helps balance is insulin, which regulates blood sugar and hunger.
So the amount of protein you get in everyday is key to weight maintenance and lean muscle mass. More protein over sugary candy bars keeps you healthy, full longer and on your fitness goals.
Bottom line, nutrition can't be measured in donuts.