Dr. Robert Cook - Is It Bad For You? Approved by Dr. Robert Cook

Are Cheez-Its Bad For You?

Also Known As: Cheez-It Baked Snack Crackers



Short answer

Cheez-Its are incredibly bad for you and should be avoided. Like many other processed snacks, they can have very negative long-term consequences.



Recommended Alternative

Long answer

While not as bad for you as some other quick-fix snacks, Cheez-Its are still not to be considered a healthy choice by any stretch of the imagination. First is the fact that a box of Cheez-Its is virtually devoid of any nutritional benefits, containing only trace amounts of any essential vitamins and minerals. Cheez-Its also contain little to no fiber and protein. One serving is equivalent to 27 crackers. In just that one serving, there are 150 calories, 8 grams of fat (2 grams from saturated fat), and 230 mg of sodium. However, Cheez-Its are a snack - and quite often a comfort food. Do you eat just one serving of Cheeze-Its (more or less a handful)? It's probably best to think in terms of consuming half a box. Considering that there are 9 servings per box, we will multiply the values by 4.5 to get 675 calories, 36 grams of fat (9 grams saturated fat), and 1,035 mg of sodium. This means that just half a box of Cheez-Its contains nearly half of the RDA for calories and sodium. Furthermore, 9 grams of saturated fat amounts to nearly 70% of the daily limit. Eating a full box will put you over that limit.

There are other dangers associated with Cheez-Its as well. For one, Cheez-Its contain a chemical known as TBHQ, or tertiary butylhydryoquinone. A petroleum derivative used to help make the food last longer, the FDA says it cannot exceed 0.02% of the fat and oil content and that death has been known to occur from just 5 grams of ingestion. Furthermore, having just 1 gram of TBHQ can cause side effects including dizziness, nausea, and delirium. Additionally, Cheez-Its contain MSG. This, combined with its high sodium content, can induce overeating and contribute towards weight gain, putting you at risk for diseases such as diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart disease. Cheez-Its do not have any nutritional value whatsoever. Any benefit (such as good flavor) is purely subjective. It is best to avoid this food completely or eat only once in a blue moon.

Possible short-term side effects

  • nausea
  • headache
  • dizziness
  • delirium

Possible long-term side effects

  • weight gain
  • heart disease
  • diabetes
  • stroke

Ingredients to be aware of

Healthier alternatives

Team-Picked Alternative (what is this?)

Annie's Cheddar Bunnies

  • Organic ingredients
  • Real cheddar flavor
  • Baked, not fried
  • No artificial additives
Learn More!

Thank you for your feedback!

Written by Jeff Volling
Published on: 01-01-2016
Last updated: 11-29-2023

Thank you for your feedback!

Written by Jeff Volling
Published on: 01-01-2016
Last updated: 11-29-2023

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