When it comes to food and fitness, how many false assumptions have you heard before?
Carbs are bad…fat will make us fat…if we do a gazillion sit-ups, we’ll get abs…to lose weight all we need to do is keep cutting calories, right?
In this exploration of common nutrition myths, we’re delving deep into the scientific evidence to debunk these misconceptions and shed light on the truth behind them.
Nutrition myths, meet your match! We’re breaking it down like a funky beat.
Brainwash be gone!
Myth 1: Carbs are bad for you.
Reality: Carbs are not “bad.”
Although low-carb diets do lead to rapid, short-term scale weight loss (spoiler alert: it’s mostly water weight), research shows that people who follow a low-carb diet end up gaining the weight back over time (and then some).
Carbohydrates are a vital energy source for our bodies. Numerous studies, including a comprehensive review published in the journal “Nutrients,” highlight the importance of carbohydrates in providing energy for our muscles and brain. The key is choosing complex carbohydrates like whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, which offer essential nutrients and fiber.
Feeling crushed from your last training session? Take a look at your nutrient timing around your workouts…specifically carbs.
Myth 2: Dietary fat causes weight gain.
Reality: Fat does not make you fat.
Not all fats are created equal. Research published in the “American Journal of Clinical Nutrition” shows that healthy fats like those found in avocados, nuts, and olive oil can actually support weight loss when included in a balanced diet. These fats can improve satiety, enhance nutrient absorption, and support overall health.
Sure, the nutrient: dietary fat, has more calories per gram (9 calories per gram) than carbohydrates and protein (4 calories per gram), but it isn’t to blame for your body fat. What is? Too much of anything, really. Too much sitting, too much snacking, even too much restriction.
It’s complicated. And it’s not a cookie cutter answer. Speaking of cookies…
Myth 3: Doing endless sit-ups will give you abs.
Reality: 10,000 sit ups a day will not give you abs.
Eat too many cookies and no amount of sit ups will show those abs if there’s too much body fat in the way.
While core exercises are essential for strength and stability, they alone won’t magically reveal your abdominal muscles. A study in the “Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research” emphasizes that spot reduction (losing fat from a specific area) through exercises like sit-ups is a myth. A comprehensive fitness regimen and a balanced diet are key to achieving visible abs.
So, check your cabinets first then go do a plank.
Myth 4: Weight loss is all about cutting calories.
Reality: It’s not as simple as calories in vs calories out. Quality matters, too.
Surprising to many, it’s not as simple as calories in vs calories out, especially when it comes to your energy, performance and health. Weight management is more complex than simply slashing calories. A study published in “The New England Journal of Medicine” found that the quality of the foods you eat matters just as much as the quantity. A balanced diet that prioritizes nutrient-dense foods can be more effective for long-term weight loss and overall health.
Focusing solely on calories may cause you to miss the bigger picture. You need a lot of macronutrients to stay alive: carbohydrates, protein and fat. These three macronutrients have different roles within your body, and deliver energy that our bodies use as fuel.
Many different factors will determine your % macro breakdown needs and timing (basic metabolism, genetics, hormones, sleep habits, stress levels, non-exercise activity: NEAT, and intentional physical activity and more.)
In the end, opt for nutrient dense foods that provide higher amounts of vitamins, minerals, and beneficial compounds per gram compared with less nutrient-dense foods.
Unlocking the Truth: Busting Common Nutrition Myths
I hope this exploration of nutrition myths has been enlightening and empowering for you.
Remember, knowledge is the key to making informed choices about your health and well-being. If you have more questions or are eager to embark on a personalized nutrition journey, I invite you to take the next step. Don’t hesitate to reach out with your inquiries or schedule a free consultation at www.salusnj.com/nutrition. Together, we can work towards a healthier, happier, and more informed you. Your journey to optimal health begins here.