When choosing foods for home-cooked meals, it’s important to know exactly what you’re putting on your plate. Bold nutrition labels promoting foods as “All Natural” or “Fat-Free” could contain hidden ingredients such as sugar, saturated fats, trans fats and salt. These less-than-healthy additions can diminish your meal’s nutritional value and possibly affect your health.

Pay special attention to salads, soups and fruit smoothies—they’re considered healthy foods, but the way they’re prepared is key to their nutritional value.

The leafy greens in salads become unwholesome when drowned in fatty dressings, smothered with cheese or deluged with croutons. Instead, add veggies such as sun-dried tomatoes and spinach to ensure a healthful meal.

In addition, watch the salt content in packaged soups. Try making your own version of this nourishing meal with fresh, low-sodium natural ingredients. Similarly, to make nutritious and tasty fruit smoothies sans added sugar, also keep it simple. Just use two kinds of berries and yogurt.

In general, preparing food from scratch is a sure way to guarantee healthier meals. If that’s not feasible, learn to spot unhealthy foods with a hard read of the label.