Please welcome dear Amy, a personal trainer from Melbourne with a passion for nutrition, fitness and healthy living. She asked me to write this guest post for my readers and I am sure you are going to enjoy reading it just as much as I did!
Nowadays, everyone is a little bit of a nutrition expert.
Developing healthy eating habits has become a sort of obsession. We all follow nutrition blogs, read articles about the latest scientifically proven benefits of certain foods, and take advice from complete strangers about what we should eat.
By now, everybody knows that low-fat, low-carb, grain-packed diet is the best.
Or is it?
Have you ever really stop to think why you should or should not eat some foods? Have you ever read a relevant study about it, or just newspaper articles?
There are so many nutrition myths around, even in mainstream media. For this reason, you need to be careful and distinguish between what is accurate and what is not. Take a look at these 5 common nutrition myths and discover the truth.
1. Added sugar is always bad for you
Sugar is often blamed for supplying only empty calories, and people are advised to avoid it entirely and switch to ‘natural’ sweeteners. First of all, these natural sweeteners, such as honey and cane juice, are basically unrefined sugar. Your body metabolizes them the same way it does refined sugar. Secondly, sugar has certain benefits for you. A teaspoon of sugar can boost your metabolism and energy throughout the day. You can turn empty calories into non-empty if you consume sugar with moderation and with a purpose. Use it to kick start your day and balance the flavours but do not go overboard, of course.
2. All saturated fats raise blood cholesterol
The main confusion here comes from putting trans and saturated fats into the same category. Trans fats are linked to cardiovascular diseases and are generally harmful. On the other hand, there are many different types of saturated fats and, while some of them are bad, others are harmless. Stearic acid is a type of saturated fat that is found naturally in cocoa, meats, and dairy products, as well as in palm and coconut oils. New research shows that this saturated fat does not raise harmful LDL cholesterol. On the contrary, it boosts beneficial HDL cholesterol levels. So, now you have a licence to eat chocolate.
3. The more fibre you eat, the better
Fibres are the fad food of the moment. The trend of eating fibres has become so popular that food manufacturers are isolating specific types of fibres and adding them to foods that do not naturally contain it. Go to the nearest supermarket and you will find aisles packed with fibre-fortified everything, even water. Well, not all fibres are equally beneficial. While it is true that only about half of us eat sufficient amounts of fibre, experts are sceptical about the health benefits of the so-called faux-fibre foods. Instead, stick to fibre-rich foods like whole grains, vegetables, fruits, and legumes.
4. Fried foods are always too fatty
Fried foods are bad only if you do not follow the preparation instructions. If the oil temperature is too low, then the fat absorption will increase. But if you deep fry at an optimal oil temperature, then the moisture from the food will penetrate to the surface and create a barrier that will minimize oil absorption. Eating fried chicken wings with French fries every night is a big no. But if you balance it out with a veggie side or salad, you can occasionally treat yourself to some crisp, tasty crust.
5. Coffee is bad for your health
Coffee, the archenemy of our health, might not be that bad for us after all. It has been blamed for slowing down your growth and causing heart problems, to causing cancer. It now seems that previous studies, on which these assumptions were based, did not take into consideration that heavy coffee drinkers often had other unhealthy habits, like smoking and physical inactivity, which might have contributed to the health problems. Coffee may even have health benefits, including fighting off Parkinson’s disease, type 2 diabetes and liver diseases. It also improves cognitive functions and keeps depression under control.
The biggest myth of all is that there is a universal diet plan that suits everyone. You can also read about how to maintain your gut health on SCD Life Style blog. Listen to your body’s signals, because it knows what is best for it. Are you currently on any diet plan?
About the author
Amy Mia Goldsmith is a biology graduate from Melbourne and a personal trainer. She has a a degree in nutrition and her goal is to teach people to live a healthy, happy life. You can contact Amy on her Facebook page and Twitter.
Thank you to dear Amy for this great post! I hope you all enjoyed her top tips to debunk nutrition myths.
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