Are those crazy food products on 'Shark Tank' actually healthy?

We all want to shed pounds, build strength, and cut down on processed junk, so it’s fitting that Shark Thank has seen a spike in the number of health-minded product pitches. As a rule of thumb, the Sharks tend to be particularly hard on anyone making claims without both FDA approval and strong sales.

Unfortunately, while Mark Cuban may own a basketball team and Robert Herjavec may fancy himself an athlete, the Sharks are far from nutrition experts.

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In fact, after consulting with Carolyn Brown, R.D., a nutritionist at Foodtrainers in New York City, to find out just how healthy some of the show’s most memorable food products are, we didn’t always find a correlation between health benefits and deal status.

WINK FROZEN DESSERTS

What it is: Low-calorie frozen dessert

What it claims: 100-calorie-per-pint alternative to ice cream. Wink is also free of the top eight allergies typically found in ice cream and ice cream substitutes.

The verdict: “Wink is low in calories, has no artificial ingredients, and their flavors have some protein and fiber, making them a good light night cap,” says Brown. That said, the Sharks didn’t like the taste. Brown says her clients prefer Halo Top when they’re looking for a sweet treat. Halo Top is higher in calories (about 250 to 350 per pint), but may taste more satisfying.

Dietitian Grade: A-

Deal Status: No deal

More on this…

PEACEFUL FRUITS

What they are: Peaceful Fruits are fruit snacks made with acai from the Amazon rainforest

What they claim: A real-fruit alternative to processed food snacks

The verdict: “Acai is loaded with antioxidants,” says Brown. “Peaceful Fruits are also organic and fair trade, so I’m a fan, especially as a replacement for people who love fruit snacks.”

Dietitian Grade: A

Deal Status: No deal

HEIDI HO VEGAN CHEESE

What it is: Nut-based cheese

What it claims: A healthier version of traditional cheese

The verdict: “Heidi Ho Vegan Cheese has no gnarly fillers or soy ingredients—nothing but cashews, spices, and, depending on the one you opt for, chia seeds,” says Brown. Just remember, eating real full-fat cheese also comes with health benefits.

Dietitian Grade: A

Deal Status: $ 125,000 from Lori in exchange for 30 percent equity

PRO-NRG

What it is: A protein-enhanced sports drink

What it claims: PRO-NRG is an energy drink made without caffeine or sugar. Each 4-ounce bottle contains 15 grams of protein, an “energy blend,” and essential vitamins.

The verdict: Just drink real water and eat real protein, okay?

Dietitian Grade: F

Deal Status: $ 250,000 from Daymond in exchange for 30 percent equity

BRAZI BITES

What it is: Brazilian cheese bread. No, really.

What it claims: A gluten-free bread alternative

The verdict: Brown says Brazi Bites are a favorite of her clients because it not only tastes great, but it’s made with no “natural flavors” or preservatives. The ingredients list touts yucca, which will boost your vitamins, minerals, and plant-based nutrients stores. Also good: real bread.

Dietitian Grade: A

Deal Status: $ 200,000 from Lori in exchange for 16.5 percent equity

NUTS ‘N MORE

What it is: Nuts ’N More is a nut butter with added whey protein

What it claims: A healthy source of protein and fiber without any sugar

The verdict: Nut butter with added whey protein is a great combo of good fats and protein, says Brown, making it perfect for post workout. “The cons with this is that the products contain some sugar alcohols which can cause digestive upset, bloat, and gassiness. I also worry about portion control on this one with flavors like Birthday Cake and Chocolate Maple Pretzel.”

Dietitian Grade: B+

Deal Status: $ 250,000 from Mark and Robert in exchange for 35 percent equity

PIPCORN

What it is: Pipcorn is a small-kernel popcorn that doesn’t get stuck in your teeth

What it claims: A non-GMO popcorn with no artificial fillers

The verdict: It’s popcorn. Just watch the portions, since a large bag has 520 calories.

Dietitian Grade: A

Deal Status: $ 200,000 from Barbara in exchange for 10 percent equity

CHIRPS CRICKET CHIPS

What they are: Chips made with cricket flour

What they claim: Chirps Cricket Chips are a high-protein alternative to potato chips

The verdict: “These chips have four grams of protein per serving. That’s not a ton of protein, even if it is more than most potato chips.” Watch your portions here too: “A whole bag of these is upwards of 500 calories.”

Dietitian Grade: A-

Deal Status: $ 100,000 from Mark in exchange for 15 percent equity

CHAPUL

What it is: A cricket-based energy bar

What it claims: Chapul is an energy bar with double the protein than their competitors

The verdict: “Crickets are high in B12 and iron in addition to having some protein, and this bar has interesting flavors (think Matcha or Aztec Dark Chocolate with Spices),” says Brown. “That said, with only 5 to 8g of protein, I wouldn’t really consider these protein bars. They have 18g of sugar from coconut nectar and date paste. I’d pass.” (Check out the best protein bars for men instead.)

Dietitian Grade: C

Deal Status: $ 50,000 from Mark in exchange for 15 percent equity

ABS PROTEIN PANCAKES

What they are: Protein-enhanced pancake mixes

What they claim: A healthier alternative to traditional pancakes; four ABS Protein Pancakes have 250 calories and 24 grams of protein.

The verdict: “A combo of casein and whey making these pancakes a good post-workout treat,” says Brown.

Dietitian Grade: B-

Deal Status: No deal

If you rather skip the mix, whip up your own protein-packed pancakes from scratch.

BEE FREE HONEE

What it is: An apple-based honey alternative

What it claims: A less expensive, less processed version of raw honey

The verdict: Unfortunately, Bee Free Honee doesn’t have the same trace mineral that honey does. “It’s organic and doesn’t have processing like normal table sugar would have, but it does include added cane sugar.”

Dietitian Grade: C

Deal Status: $ 210,000 from Chris, Barbara, and Mark in exchange for 30 percent equity.

This article first appeared on Men’s Health.

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