), so many people still believe some of the most common food myths to be true.. Or rather, the lack of it! Although vitamin C is related to boosting immunity and natural foods rich in vitamin C are healthy, supplements are best taken only with medical advice and as recommended. For example, some studies have linked calcium supplements to an increased risk of heart disease. Though obesity increases your risk of disease, you don’t have to be skinny to be healthy. Critics of such sweeteners often claim that they are dangerous and linked to various health issues. Here are several reasonably nutritious, cheap food options that may fit a wide range of diets: Expensive berries, organic wild fish, and the latest superfoods from faraway lands aren’t necessary for a healthy diet. In other words: the existing evidence is a mixed bag. Although medical professionals commonly prescribe calcium supplements, current research shows that these supplements may do more harm than good. Carbohydrate-containing foods increase blood sugar levels after a meal. It is reasonably easy to find claims that people eat poorly because healthy food is too expensive. Reality: Some people may not be eating enough or are eating the wrong types of calories. White potatoes are a nutritious carb choice — just be sure to enjoy them in more healthful ways, such as roasted or baked. This article reviews whether mayo is safe when…. You need to eat small, frequent meals for optimal health, 6. The implication was that we should all limit our intake of cholesterol-rich foods like eggs and shrimp, and the American Heart Association thus recommended “no more than three eggs per week” in 1968 (86, 87). If fat indeed did cause people to gain weight, then it would be impossible for people to lose weight on low-carb, high-fat diets. "Eggs are bad for your heart." Myth 8 – Artificial Sweeteners are harmless and effective for weight loss Facts: This is a common health myth that artificial sweeteners are safe for use. If you’re concerned about your calcium intake, it’s best to focus on dietary sources of calcium like full fat yogurt, sardines, beans, and seeds. Weight loss is difficult for most people and requires consistency, self-love, hard work, and patience. Yet some claims push the idea that any food which contains saturated fat is “bad” for you. Organic foods still use pesticides, and the only difference is that the ingredients in those pesticides were at one point extracted from a natural source (28, 29, 30). Certain components of food are often blamed for health issues, particularly by the media and diet activists. However, thousands of other people will claim that a strict ketogenic diet is the only solution to “rescue your health.”. Although tracking calories may help some people lose weight, it’s not necessary for everyone and may lead to disordered eating tendencies. Just remember to enjoy potatoes baked or roasted, not fried (18, 19). The use of common medications, age, and certain medical conditions are just some of the reasons why supplements may be needed for some people. Still, reducing your disease risk does not mean you have to be skinny. Eating healthy … The glycemic impact of whole fruit is much lower than sugar or fruit juice too. Students will learn that they can eat a variety of foods and still maintain a healthy weight for their gender, height and activity level. The statistics are quite clear on this, and a meta-analysis examining 29 long-term weight loss studies found that (24): However, the blanket dismissive claim that a particular diet is unsustainable for everyone is borne out of ignorance rather than evidence. Our website services, content, and products are for informational purposes only. If someone genuinely feels they have a health issue that needs “detoxing” they should speak to their doctor/medical team about it rather than follow the advice of social media influencers. Myth: Extreme Calorie Cutting Helps You Lose Weight. However, just because a food contains naturally-occurring sugar doesn’t mean it is “bad” for us. Some individuals find calorie counting useful, yet others may find it unnecessary or unhelpful. Fact: Multi-grain breads may sound healthy because you more than likely have been taught to look for “multi-grain” labels, but multi-grain breads aren’t as healthy as you may think. For example, a nutrient-dense smoothie or freshly made juice composed primarily of non-starchy vegetables can be a great way to increase your vitamin, mineral, and antioxidant intake. It’s best to forgo these products and instead enjoy small amounts of foods like full fat yogurt, cheese, and nut butters (20, 21). VERY IMPORTANT TO KNOW AND BE AWARE ABOUT NUTRITION AND DIETS OUT THERE. So, possibly you will ask why then it is bad? However, evidence from observational studies and human clinical trials appears to question this premise: While omega-6 has some pro-inflammatory properties, the existing evidence from human studies doesn’t support the idea that higher dietary intake causes inflammation. These are omega-3 and omega-6 (58). The best ways to “burn fat” are the same as they have always been: eating less food, exercise/resistance training, and higher activity levels in general. “DHA is important for babies only during pregnancy.” For example, hormonal imbalances, health conditions like hypothyroidism, metabolic adaptations, the use of certain medications, and genetics are just some of the factors that may make weight loss harder for some people, even when they’re on a strict diet (1, 2). Of course, extremes in either direction, whether it be a very low fat or very high fat diet, may harm your health, especially when diet quality is poor. Research has shown that many low fat and diet items contain much more added sugar and salt than their regular-fat counterparts. Obesity is associated with many health conditions, including type 2 diabetes, heart disease, depression, certain cancers, and even early death (28, 29). Though creating a calorie deficit by burning more energy than you take in is the most important factor when it comes to weight loss, it’s not the only thing that matters. Though going on a very low calorie diet will likely promote rapid weight loss in the short term, long-term adherence to very low calorie diets leads to a reduction in metabolic rate, increased feelings of hunger, and alterations in fullness hormones (27). Regarding their effect on body composition, the data from existing systematic reviews is more interesting (76, 77, 78): For more information, there is an in-depth guide to aspartame here, which looks at the existing evidence from a wide range of studies. However, some longer (>12 months) studies suggest they may slightly help with weight loss. However, many different foods have both potential benefits and downsides that are often dose-dependent. Many store-bought juices and smoothies are packed with added sugar and calories. Although tweaking macro ratios can be helpful in some ways, the most important way to promote overall health is to follow a diet rich in whole, unprocessed foods, regardless of the macro ratio. In this particular study, the overall rate of compliance to three different diets—low carb, ‘Mediterranean,’ and low fat—was 85% (25). Myth – Organic Foods Are More Nutritious Than Non-organic Ones The word ‘organic’ is often assumed to be better, healthier and more nutritious than any other food. Is skipping breakfast really linked to weight gain and other problems? Some scientists have speculated that the French people’s love of wine, especially red wine, at least partly explains their superior cardiovascular health.It seems logical, since red wine contains high levels of a phytochemical called resveratrol, which acts as an antioxidant and reduces inflammation. Another common nutrition myth is the idea that we should avoid vegetables that contain antinutrients such as oxalate and phytate. What’s more, regular NNS intake is associated with overall unhealthy lifestyle patterns (16, 17). Skipping breakfast did not lead to weight gain. Macronutrient ratio matters more than diet quality, 8. Many people are told to pop calcium supplements to keep their skeletal system healthy. In contrast, omega-6 has specific appears to play an important role in blood clotting and modulating wound healing (60). Such claims can be unhelpful for individuals who are attempting to make healthier nutritional choices. Current research suggests that probiotic supplements may not benefit everyone and should not be prescribed as a one-size-fits-all supplement. Fasting blood glucose levels represent the amount of sugar in the blood when we haven’t eaten, and they are usually taken after an overnight fast. SPECIAL FROM Next Avenue. This article examines the research on breakfast, weight loss and health. Is Fruit Fattening? However, as previously mentioned, judging food by its saturated fat content requires nuance, and both the amount and type of saturated fatty acids are important. For some individuals, particularly those at risk of kidney stones, high dietary oxalate intake may potentially lead to the formation of calcium oxalate stones (kidney stones) (39). Another old, yet still common, misconception about dietary fat is that “fat makes you fat.”. The glycemic index (GI) and glycemic load of a particular food represent the impact that food will have on blood sugar levels. According to randomized clinical trials, low-carb diets can result in weight loss and improvements to numerous different health markers (1, 2, 3). For more information on this, there is an excellent article here: Mythbusting 101: Organic Farming > Conventional Agriculture. Many factors may influence how easy it is for you to lose weight. However, simply claiming that all meat is inherently “bad” for someone is not well-supported by the evidence. Following a very low calorie diet is the best way to lose weight, 12. It is also true that specific saturated fatty acids (mainly lauric, myristic, and palmitic acid) tend to increase LDL cholesterol levels when consumed in high amounts. Plus, low fat diets have been linked to a greater risk of health issues, including metabolic syndrome, and may lead to an increase in insulin resistance and triglyceride levels, which are known risk factors for heart disease (4, 5). However, practitioners generally overprescribed them, and research has demonstrated that some people may not benefit from probiotics like others do (36). Whether we prefer to track calories or not, though, the total amount of daily calories we consume is vital for weight control. Numerous studies have demonstrated this to be the case, and here are two such examples: Artificial sweeteners, such as aspartame, can be found in a wide range of products, and they are particularly prevalent in diet drinks. That's why we put together some of the most popular healthy diet claims so we can debunk them myth One eating after 6 PM is bad for your health. Past studies have strongly suggested that trans fat may cause harm, with a systematic review and meta-analysis of 12 large observational studies demonstrating that a higher intake of trans fat increased both total mortality and cardiovascular mortality (8). For this reason, it has been hypothesized by various researchers that high intakes of omega-6 may have detrimental pro-inflammatory effects (61, 62). Also, research on dietary adherence has shown that some dieters have been successful following a wide range of diets. What Is Monounsaturated Fat and Does It Have Benefits? This concept also fails to emphasize the importance of sustainability and diet quality for weight loss. NUTRTION DIET MYTHS PART 2. What’s most important is consuming a nutritious diet and maintaining an active lifestyle, as these behaviors often improve your body weight and body fat percentage. While focusing on consuming a nutrient-dense, well-rounded diet is the most essential component of health, supplements — when used correctly and in the right form — can be beneficial in many ways. Half-cooked information paddled by some often becomes a universal truth for the masses. This led to the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans omitting dietary cholesterol as a “nutrient of concern for overconsumption” for the first time (90). A Cochrane systematic review on omega-3 intake examined 28 randomized controlled trials that exhibited a low risk of bias and lasted for longer than 12 months. Below we discuss some myths and facts about children’s wellness to help you ensure they get what they need. The rising interest in low calorie, low carb, sugar-free foods has led to an increase in products that contain non-nutritive sweeteners (NNS). While some people are more sensitive to dietary cholesterol than others, overall, nutrient-dense, cholesterol-rich foods can be included in a healthy diet (40). They also offer these 7 health and nutrition benefits. Despite these numbers, many people hear that the GI of a particular food is a specific figure and assume that the glycemic response to that food will always be the same. As an example, human clinical trials in patients with type 2 diabetes have demonstrated that increasing phytate intake lowers levels of advanced glycation end-products (AGES) in the blood (47). However, these associations are only seen at intake levels above a certain threshold and may be influenced by other factors such as cooking method – particularly high-temperature cooking (91, 92, 93, 94). Regardless, if you enjoy breakfast, eat it. Phytate, otherwise known as phytic acid, is the storage form of phosphorus and an antinutrient that can partially inhibit the absorption of minerals such as iron (44). In truth, the glycemic response to a particular food can change significantly depending on other foods it is eaten alongside. Some studies suggest that it, In a randomized controlled trial featuring 67 participants, high daily omega-6 intake over 10 weeks had no impact on markers of oxidative stress or inflammation (, In the Kuopio Ischaemic Heart Disease Risk Factor Study, which involved 1287 male participants, serum omega-6 levels were not associated with inflammation. Myth: To protect your heart, drink red wine or don’t bother filling your glass. The bigger, the better; 3. Eating frequent meals throughout the day is not the best way to promote weight loss. Like many other foods and nutrients, phytate can also have some beneficial effects. However, in recent years research has uncovered that dietary cholesterol does not have a significant impact on blood cholesterol levels or cardiovascular risk for most people (88, 89). Those following the “calories in, calories out” method typically concentrate solely on the calorie value of foods, not their nutrient value (3). When consumed in excess, they can promote weight gain and other health issues like tooth decay and blood sugar dysregulation (33, 34, 35). On the positive side, red meat is a nutrient-rich food that offers an excellent source of bioavailable protein, vitamins, and minerals. We all have heard the phrase "an apple a day keeps the doctor away," or had Mom tell us for years to eat and drink certain things to stay healthy and strong. Often labeled as “unhealthy” by those in the nutrition world, white potatoes are restricted by many people wanting to lose weight or improve their overall health. It helps to build our muscles and helps recover faster after workouts. 1)Myth: Take 8 glasses of water per day for a healthier life . Though this antiquated and incorrect theory is slowly being put to rest, many people still fear high fat foods and follow low fat diets in the hopes that cutting their fat intake will benefit their overall health. Not only are some people’s digestive systems resistant to probiotic colonization, but introducing probiotics through supplements may lead to negative changes in their gut bacteria. In a study investigating how the GI of food can change, mashed potato eaten by itself had a GI of 103. Including healthy carb choices in your diet won’t make you gain weight. Low fat and diet foods are typically high in sugar and salt. Participants regained more than 50% of their lost weight within two years. All rights reserved. © 2005-2021 Healthline Media a Red Ventures Company. Unfortunately, it is still possible to come across claims that we should avoid all sources of dietary cholesterol, particularly from enthusiastic diet advocates on social media. There are two essential fatty acids (known as EFAs) that the human body requires. Scrolling through social media, reading your favorite magazine, or visiting popular websites exposes you to endless information about nutrition and health — most of which is incorrect. For example, dietary patterns that contain a balanced mix of high fiber carbs mainly from produce, healthy fats, and proteins, such as the Mediterranean diet, have been associated with a reduced risk of obesity, diabetes, certain cancers, and heart disease (46, 47). Fact: Lifting weights or doing other activities 2 or 3 days a week that may help you build strong muscles, such as push-ups and some types of yoga, will not bulk you up. Plus, they’re more filling than other carb sources like rice and pasta and can help you feel more satisfied after meals. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/biggest-lies-of-nutrition There are times when vitamin pills can be dangerous or even unhelpful. One potential harm from these diets is that people following a juice detox may ingest significant quantities of high-oxalate juices, such as spinach, over a prolonged period. NUTRITION: DIET MYTHS PART 2. Last medically reviewed on April 20, 2020. But that doesn’t mean they’re harmless. Additionally, some studies show that probiotic treatment following a course of antibiotics may delay the natural reconstitution of normal gut bacteria (38). For example, supplementing with magnesium and B vitamins has been shown to benefit those with type 2 diabetes by enhancing blood sugar and reducing heart disease risk factors and diabetes-related complications (25, 26). As mentioned in the ‘antinutrient’ section of this article, excessive intakes of oxalate from juicing have the potential to cause kidney issues (40, 41). The nutrition world is rife with misinformation, leading to public confusion, mistrust of health professionals, and poor dietary choices. For underprivileged people, it can be difficult to afford foods such as fish and vegetables when processed foods often provide more calories per dollar. Among other foods, we can predominantly find phytate in foods like legumes, nuts, and whole grains (45). For more nutrition-related articles, see here. This is why studies have shown that low calorie dieters rarely succeed in keeping excess weight off in the long term (27). Keep in mind that this does not apply to growing children and teens or those with increased nutrient needs, such as pregnant women and those with certain health conditions, as skipping meals may lead to negative health effects in these populations (13, 14). Unfortunately, many people of influence are still dispensing these mainstream nutrition myths, to the detriment of our health. “If you really want a tight and defined core, combine strengthening exercises with a super clean nutrition plan that balances veggies, protein, complex carbs and healthy fats.” 15. However, it is a myth that all healthy food has to be expensive: Firstly, buying “conventional” meat and produce isn’t necessary, and there is little difference between conventional and (more expensive) organic food. While that may not sound significant, it could help offset typical age-related weight gain. For many, especially those with health conditions like type 2 diabetes, as well as those who take common medications like statins, proton pump inhibitors, birth control, and antidiabetic medications, taking specific supplements can significantly affect their health (22, 23, 24). By Debra Witt. Vitamin D is beneficial for bones and the nervous system; 4. Weight loss is not easy. Healthline Media does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Of course, this does not mean that we should just ignore epidemiological evidence linking high red meat to gastrointestinal cancer. Last Updated on October 7, 2020 by Michael Joseph. Science puts an end to these myths, misconceptions, and inaccuracies about human health and nutrition. Not only are these “detoxes” expensive, but they can potentially cause harm too. Myth: Lifting weights is not a good way to improve your health or lose weight because it will make you “bulk up.” Do muscle-strengthening activities at least twice a week. Although macro coaches may lead you to believe that the ratio of macronutrients in your diet is all that matters when it comes to weight loss and overall health, this narrow-minded take on nutrition is missing the bigger picture. However, problems occur when meat is overcooked or burnt. A Review of This Common Claim, List of Foods With a High Oxalate Content, Is Aspartame Bad For You? However, based on the available evidence, this is just a myth. In this study, participants with higher serum levels of linoleic acid (the primary omega-6 fatty acid) had lower levels of C-reactive protein, a major marker of inflammation (, A Cochrane systematic review of 19 randomized trials featuring 6461 adults examined the effect of increasing omega-6 intake on cardiovascular risk. Healthy Eating and Exercise Myth Busting. Fiber supplements are a good substitute for high fiber foods, 15. Nutrition Myths and Facts debunks many common misconceptions about nutrition that are perpetuated by the media and offers solid facts instead. For many years, public health advice suggested that we should tightly limit the amount of dietary cholesterol we consume. Some observational studies find that people who consume more artificial sweeteners have higher body weight and a higher risk of metabolic syndrome than those who do not. The idea that eating fruit is in some way responsible for weight gain is quite a common claim to come across. Although fiber supplements can benefit health by improving bowel movements and blood sugar control, they should not replace real food (32). Cholesterol-rich foods have gotten a bad rap thanks to misconceptions about how dietary cholesterol affects heart health. Certain juices and smoothies are highly nutritious. The truth is that we need vitamins to be healthy, our bodies can’t function without them. 1. Intermittent fasting is an effective way to lose weight and improve health. draws from its calcium stores (in bones) to buffer the acid load caused by The nutrition world is rife with misinformation, leading to public confusion, mistrust of health professionals, and poor dietary choices. This claim is simply untrue: overall energy balance, governed mainly by the amount of food we eat, is the primary determinant of weight gain or weight loss (67, 68). However, given that there are so many myths, it can be challenging to separate the truths from the falsehoods. 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