5 Nutrition Myths That Might Be Ruining Your Health
If you’re reading this, the start of a new school year may have motivated you to make improvements to your health. Chances are you really want to make good food choices that will properly nourish your body and contribute to a healthy lifestyle. Unfortunately, there are many food myths that will get you off track and disrupt your goals to be fitter and trimmer. Don’t be fooled by these common misconceptions.
Myth: All calories are created equal.
When you’re trying to lose or maintain weight, where calories come from matters more than the number of calories you ingest. A diet rich in lean protein, healthy fats (like avocado, olive oil and nuts) and vegetables is much less likely to cause your body to store fat than eating the same number of calories from foods full of sugars and refined carbohydrates.
Myth: Eating red meat is bad for you.
When it comes to red meat, it’s important to distinguish between processed and unprocessed meat. One analysis found unprocessed red meat is not directly linked to an increased risk for heart disease or diabetes. However, consumption of processed meat has been associated with a negative health impact. A recommended amount of lean, unprocessed red meat is a key source of healthy proteins and fats, and the minerals iron, magnesium and zinc.
Myth: Eating eggs is bad for you.
Eggs are rich in cholesterol, but they’re also a great source of quality protein and antioxidants. One large egg contains about 180 milligrams of cholesterol. A 2016 study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that eating one egg a day was not associated with an increase in coronary artery disease.
Myth: Stay away from bread, pasta and rice when you’re trying to lose weight.
Grains alone aren’t unhealthy, although substituting whole-grain products for those made from refined grains is healthier and may help you to feel full longer. Whole grains – including brown rice, quinoa, oats and whole-wheat bread – provide iron, fiber and other important nutrients. The USDA recommends grains as part of a healthy diet, with at least half of the recommended daily amount coming from whole grains.
Myth: Milk and dairy products are unnecessary and unhealthy.
Dairy products are an important source of protein and calcium needed for strong bones. In addition, many dairy products have added vitamin D that is necessary for your body to absorb calcium. Fat-free and low-fat milk, yogurt and cheese are equally as nutritious as whole-milk dairy products, while being lower in calories and fat. Those who can’t digest lactose (the sugar found in dairy products) should choose other foods and beverages containing calcium and vitamin D.
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