Debunking Nutrition Myths
Nutrition myths are everywhere, from the age-old wait thirty minutes after eating to swim to if you swallow gum it will sit in your stomach forever, it is hard to know what to believe. As a nutritionist people are always asking what is right and wrong. Below are some of the most common questions I get.
Low fat diets are useful for weight loss.
Despite common belief, fat does not make you fat. Fats are necessary for our existence. They are important vehicles for nutrient absorption, nerve transmission, and the health of our cells. The reason fats have gotten a bad reputation over the years is because not all fats are created equal. There are some, specifically trans and saturated fats, which in excess can increase one’s weight and the risk for heart disease. While others like polyunsaturated and monounsaturated are beneficial for our health. When we choose low fat over full fat varieties, we are missing out on these important molecules for our health. Additionally, low fat options are normally filled with sugar and artificial flavors to make the product taste better.
You have to eat breakfast food for breakfast.
We are taught that cereal, pancakes, french toast, and eggs are the only foods we can eat for breakfast. However, starting the day off with sugar will not set us up for a successful day and certainly won’t keep us satisfied until lunch. Sugar and white flour, which are found in most/all breakfast cereals and pancakes cause a spike in insulin. This spike can leave you feeling tired and hungry shortly after your meal. Eggs are a great option for breakfast especially when paired with roasted vegetables and avocado. The balance between protein, fat, and fiber will keep you fuller longer and keep insulin levels stable. Breakfast is a time to be creative, mix in leftovers and create new meals, don’t limit yourself to energy zapping syrup and cereal.
Egg yolks are bad for you.
Personally, I could not live without eggs. There isn’t a meal where I wouldn’t hesitate putting a fried egg on top. So, when I hear people at restaurants order egg whites only, I cringe. By removing the yolk, you are missing out on so many health benefits. Unlike the whites, egg yolks contain valuable fat-soluble vitamins like A, D, E, and K in addition to anti-inflammatory omega-3 fats as well as the antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin. Additionally, the yolk is a fantastic source of B12 and folate, which help with energy production. Yolks were originally demonized back in the 1950’s for their saturated fat and cholesterol content. However, only 20% of blood cholesterol comes from dietary sources. Additionally, the cholesterol found in eggs is critical to many valuable processes in the body from cell signaling, nerve transmission, and fat digestion.