Myths vs. Facts on Nutrition

By March 8, 2017January 20th, 2022No Comments

Nutrition can be so confusing in todays society as it seems that every health discovery is contradicted the next day. Do not get overwhelmed! The following are myths on nutrition that you may have heard about through media sources. These top 5 myths are ones that I personally have researched for many years and have found them to be very misleading. Below is my explanation debunking the myth and surfacing the facts.

Myth #1: Diet soda keeps you thin

It has now been proven that the calorie-free artificial sweeteners (such as aspartame) lead to uncontrolled food urges throughout the day! A study done at the University of Texas showed that just drinking 3 diet soda per week increases the chances of obesity by 40%. In short, the artificial sweeteners trick your body to thinking that you are full when you aren’t. The best decision is to try to switch to carbonated water flavoured by fresh lemon or mint, which will work to keep you thin and slim.

Myth #2: All calories are equal

You have probably heard the phrase: calories in, calories out. This is just not true. Consuming 250 calories of spinach is not the same as eating 250 calories of donuts. Calories of different foods are used and stored differently in the body. Foods that contain mostly simple carbohydrates (cake and donuts) are broken down to glucose and stored as fat if not used as energy. Foods that contain complex carbohydrates and fibre (such as corn) are very hard for the body to digest and it can’t absorb a lot of the calories or glucose in the food – it is excreted as waste. Whole foods are more nutrient dense and processed foods are more calorie dense. Therefore, do not watch your calories, watch your nutrient intake!

Myth #3: Egg yolks raise cholesterol levels

Recently, cholesterol has been a big buzz word and the media has us staying away from all types of fats. High levels of serum cholesterol are what the doctors are afraid of, however most dietary cholesterol has nothing to do with serum (blood) levels. Oxidative stress and vitamin D levels can have an effect on serum cholesterol levels. I’m not saying have two eggs every day, everything in moderation. However, when having an egg always opt for the whole egg as the yolk has all the nutrients, vitamins and minerals!

Myth #4: All dark chocolate is good for you

This statement is only partially true. Chocolate naturally occurs in a pod and fermented into chocolate filled with polyphenols and antioxidants. The polyphenols can help to lower blood pressure and boost metabolism! Any sort of processing damages the polyphenols, leaving the once healthy treat as unhealthy candy. Unless the chocolate has a label saying 70% or higher, you are not getting the added benefits of dark chocolate.

Myth #5: All nutrition bars are healthy

It is very unfortunate that many nutrition bars are labeled as nutritious, when they should be labeled as calorically unbalanced and chemical laced. Most nutrition bars out on the market are packed with many types of sugars and fillers that most people cannot even pronounce. When choosing a healthy nutrition bar as a snack ALWAYS look at the ingredients. Less is best, having under 10 grams of sugar per bar is optimal and if you do not recognize more than 3 words on the label your digestive system probably won’t recognize it either. Some of my favourite bars are Kind bar, Lara bar and Qia bar. All can be found at your local health food store.

By: Kelly Karter