We seem to over complicate losing weight and changing our health. The problem is, we tend to rely on information that is old and outdated. As more scientific evidence is starting to point us in a more reliable direction, many of the old dogmas are still believed “as truth” by a vast majority of us as well as professionals in the industry.
Here are 7 myths that are still believed to be true about our diet
Myth 1: Losing Weight is All About Eating Less And Exercising More
Weight loss or weight gain is often assumed to be all about calories in vs. calories out. Although it’s what we’ve been taught for decades its completely deceptive and highly inaccurate.
The human body is a highly complex biological system with many hormones that regulate when and how much we eat as well as the metabolic pathways those calories will follow.
It is well known that our hormones, without a doubt, have the highest impact on our body weight.
The fact is, foods like processed carbohydrates and sugar are now understood to be downright addictive, making it quite easy for people to over-consume, putting their hormones hugely out of balance.
Our body is not a mathematical equation, it is a biological chemical factory designed to “automatically” regulate all of our functions from breathing and heartbeat to OUR blood sugar level and pH, including a healthy body weight.
Therefore, it is a myth that weight loss is as easy as eating less and exercise more.
Myth 2: Egg Yolks Are Bad and Should be Avoided
We’ve been advised to cut back on whole eggs because the yolks are high in cholesterol. However, cholesterol in the diet has remarkably little affect on cholesterol in the blood.
Studies have shown that eggs actually raise “good” cholesterol and do not raise the risk of heart disease.
Whole eggs really are among one of the most nutritious foods on the planet and the vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and healthy fat is all found in the yolk. So telling people to throw the yolks away has been one of the biggest misconceptions in the history of nutrition.
So, despite eggs being high in saturated fat and cholesterol, they do not raise blood cholesterol or increase the risk for heart disease, even though that’s what we’ve been lead to believe.
Myth 3: Eating Fat Makes You Fat
Fat is the stuff that is under our skin, making us look soft and fluffy. Therefore it seems logical that we think eating fat would make us fat RIGHT?
However, this depends entirely on the context. You see, the truth is diets that are high in fat and carbohydrates can make you fat, but it’s not because of the fat.
You see, fat, hormonally, has little to no effect on insulin production, a fat storing hormone, so fat has little to no ability to be stores as body fat.
In fact, diets that are high in fat but low in carbohydrates consistently lead to more weight loss than low fat diets, even when the low fat groups restrict calories.
So, the fattening effects of dietary fat depend entirely on the context. A diet that is high in fat but low in carbs leads to more weight loss than a low fat diet hands down.
Myth 4: All Calories Are Created Equal
We hear this all the time, it doesn’t matter what you eat just how much you eat RIGHT? But the truth is, this simply isn’t true because all calories are created equal.
Different foods go through different metabolic pathways and have direct effects on fat burning hormones as well as the brains center that regulates our appetite.
A high protein diet, for example, can increase a metabolic effect by more than100 calories per day and significantly reduce appetite.
In this study, a high protein diet made people automatically eat 441 fewer calories per day. They also lost 11 pounds in 12 weeks, just by adding protein to their diet.
There are many more examples of different foods having vastly different effects on hunger, hormones and health. Simply put, a calorie is not a calorie.
So, even though we’ve been told calories are just calories for decades, the fact is all calories are created equal, because different foods and macronutrients go through different metabolic pathways. They all have different varying effects on hunger, hormones and health.
Myth 5: High-Protein Diets Are Hard On Your Kidneys
It is often said that dietary protein increases strain on the kidneys and raises the risk of kidney problems and/or failure.
Although it is true that people with established kidney disease should be attentive about over consuming protein, this is absolutely not true for the otherwise healthy people.
Numerous studies, even in athletes that eat large amounts of protein, show that a high protein intake is perfectly safe, healthy and actually very metabolically beneficial.
In fact, a higher protein diet can actually help lowers blood pressure and even help reverse type 2 diabetes, which are two of the main risk factors for kidney failure.
Also to be noted, protein reduces appetite while keeping you satiated longer which supports weight loss.
So, eating a lot of protein has no adverse effects on kidney function in otherwise healthy people and supports good health while improving numerous risk factors.
Myth 6: Low Fat Foods Are Healthy
When the low fat guidelines were established, in the 1980’s, the food manufacturers responded with all sorts of so called low fat health foods.
The problem was, these foods tasted terrible when the fat is extracted, so the food manufacturers added a whole bunch of sugar to mask the horrible taste.
The truth is, the excess sugar that was being added to offset the taste is incredibly harmful, while the fat naturally present in food is not.
So, processed low fat foods tend to be very high in sugar, which is very unhealthy compared to the full fat versions or the fat that is naturally present in foods.
Myth 7: Low Carb Diets Are Dangerous
Low-carb diets have been popular for many decades now but mainstream professionals have constantly warned us that these diets will end up clogging our arteries.
However, since early 2000, numerous studies have been conducted on the low carb diet citing it to be encouragingly healthy.
Low carb diets actually cause more weight loss and improve most risk factors for heart disease, Type 2 diabetes and multiple other metabolic complications more than the low fat diet.
Although the tide is finally starting to shift, many experts still cling to the fact that low carb diets are dangerous and continue to promote the failed low fat dogma that science has shown to be utterly useless.
Of course, low carb diets are not for everyone (notably extreme athletes), but it is very clear that they can have major benefits for people struggling to lose weight or suffering from obesity, type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome, some of our biggest health issues in the country today.
So, despite having been demonized in the past, many new studies have shown that low carb diets are much healthier than the low fat diet still recommended by the mainstream professionals.