Debunking Diet Myths

November 12, 2012

Debunking Diet Myths

While many people are overweight, they struggle to lose excess pounds due to the slow pace at which they lose inches and weight – but there is no such thing as a quick fix!

It is now generally recognised that there is no quick fix for weight loss, as easy as it is to gain weight it is many times harder to lose it again, there are no short cuts for healthy weight loss – the only way to do it is by eating less and exercising more, ensuring that our diet is healthy and well balanced. Many of the weight loss myths not only do not contribute to weight loss – but also may even make it harder to do!

Never eat after 8 p.m.

Eating after 8 p.m. will not lead to weight gain. The timing of meals is not important – but rather the importance lies with what and how much is eaten. Dieters who have skipped a meal during the day are more likely to binge and snack at night, eating the right amount of good quality food will reduce the risk of cravings and over eating. Eating a light meal in the evening together with a protein shake and berries or low fat yogurt with whole grain cereals and fruit make great alternatives to a heavy meal.

All calories are the same

Another myth. Bad calories are quickly absorbed and digested – such as refined sugar, this leads to high levels of hyperglycaemia and fat build up. Good calories come from fibre rich foods, also known as complex carbohydrates, which slow down digestion, control blood sugar levels and provide long lasting energy. A diet that is loaded with bad calories can result in fatigue and lethargy – in order to avoid this simple sugars such as those found in white bread, confectionary, white rice and pasta should not be eaten. Complex carbohydrates should be eaten in the form of whole grains, fresh fruit and vegetables.

A bowl of soup or glass of water before a meal causes a feeling of fullness

This may, or may not, be the case. Certainly some people are convinced that doing either of these things makes them eat less and it may be that soup may make us feel more satisfied. Water is a great alternative to many of the drinks available and should be drunk as often as possible.

Never eat red meat when dieting

This is quite untrue – red meat is a great source of protein, indeed, essential in many ways as it provided iron and nutrients not necessarily available elsewhere. Choose lean cuts and small portions as part of a healthy, balanced diet.

Over the counter products for weight loss really work

Whilst there are some diet pills that have been approved for use and can be purchased as an over the counter product it is always best to consult your medical practitioner before using any of them – remembering that successful weight loss is the result of changing and maintaining healthy eating habits, not about popping a pill.

All grams are the same

No. A gram of fat contains 9 calories – whilst a gram of protein or carbohydrate only 4. Foods of the same serving size will not necessarily have the same calorie content; reducing the amount of fat eaten in a day will leave more calories for other, healthier, food choices.

No one can change his or her weight – it is biologically predetermined

It is all too easy to blame ones genes for being overweight and whilst it is true to say that our genes do play some small part in body shape and composition if we choose a healthy lifestyle we can reduce the impact that our genes have on our weight.

No such thing as a fat burning food

Research has conclusively shown that there are no foods that will burn extra, stored fat or calories, indeed excessive consumption of some of these so-called miracle foods, which actually have a negative impact on health.

There really is no quick fix for losing weight, eating a healthy well balanced diet and increasing exercise levels is the only way to achieve the weight we desire

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