TOP 10 NUTRITION MYTHS
1. Fructose Is Just Part Of A Healthy Diet
Fructose is perhaps the greatest threat to your health and you're bound to get it in excess if you consume processed foods. Mounting evidence shows that excess fructose, primarily in the form of high fructose corn syrup (HFCS), is a primary factor causing not just obesity, but also chronic and fatal disease. Because of the prevalence of HFCS in foods and beverages, the average person now consumes 150 grams of sugar EVERY DAY, half of which is fructose. Fructose can also increase your hunger and lead to over eating.
2. Saturated Fats Cause Heart Disease
The truth is, saturated fats from animal and vegetable sources provide the building blocks for cell membranes and a variety of hormones and hormone-like substances, without which your body cannot function optimally. They also act as carriers for important fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E and K. Dietary fats are also needed for the conversion of carotene to vitamin A, for mineral absorption, and for a host of other biological processes.
3. Eating Fat Makes You Fat
This is a myth – eating fat will not make you fat! The primary cause of excess weight and the chronic diseases associated with it, is actually the consumption of too much sugar – especially fructose, but also many grains which rapidly convert to sugar in your body. If the low-fat craze had been a low-sugar craze we wouldn't have nearly as much chronic disease today.
4. Artificial Sweeteners Help Weight Loss
Most people use artificial sweeteners to lose weight or because they're diabetic and need to avoid sugar. The amazing irony is that nearly all the studies that have carefully analyzed their effectiveness show that those who use artificial sweeteners actually gain more weight than those who consume caloric sweeteners. Artificial sweeteners appear to simply perpetuate a craving for sweets, and overall sugar consumption And artificial sweeteners may disrupt your body's natural ability to 'count calories,' as evidenced in a 2004 study at Purdue University, which found that rats fed artificially sweetened liquids ate more high-calorie food than rats fed sugar sweetened liquids.
5. Soy Is A Health Food
Unfermented soy products are NOT healthful additions to your diet. Contrary to popular belief, thousands of studies have actually linked unfermented soy to malnutrition, digestive distress, immune-system breakdown, thyroid dysfunction, cognitive decline, reproductive disorders and infertility—even heart disease. More than 90 percent of American soy crops are genetically modified but having said that organic and properly fermented soy does have great health benefits. Examples of such healthful fermented soy products include tempeh, miso and natto.
6. Milk Does A Body Good
Not so. There are very real dangers in the growth hormones and antibiotics found in conventional milk. Once milk has been pasteurized its physical structure is changed in a way that can actually cause allergies and immune problems. Important enzymes like lactase are destroyed during the pasteurization process which causes many people to not be able to digest milk. Additionally, vitamins (such as A, C, B6 and B12) are diminished. The eradication of beneficial bacteria through the pasteurization process promotes pathogens rather than protecting you from them.
7. Genetically Engineered Foods (GMO) are safe
What ultimate impact these foods will have on your health is still unknown, but increased disease, infertility and birth defects appear to be on the top of the list of most likely side effects. The first-ever lifetime feeding study also showed a dramatic increase in organ damage and reduced lifespan. GMO foods include: Corn, canola, alfalfa, soy, cottonseed and sugar derived from sugar beets. Fresh zucchini, crookneck squash and Hawaiian papaya are also commonly GMO. It's important to know that unless you're buying all organic food, grow your own veggies and buy all whole foods and cook everything from scratch, chances are you're consuming GMO foods every single day.
8. We Need Grains For Fibre
Unfortunately ALL grains, including whole-grain and organic varieties, can elevate your insulin levels, which can increase your risk of disease. Many also contain gluten, which some are sensitive to and sub-clinical gluten intolerance is far more common today and can also wreak havoc with your health. It is wise to restrict grains as well as sugars/fructose from your diet, especially if you have any conditions that are related to insulin resistance. The higher your insulin levels and the more prominent your signs of insulin overload are, the fewer grains you should consume.
9. Hot Dogs Are OK Right?
Virtually all processed meat products contain dangerous compounds that put them squarely on the list of foods to avoid or eliminate entirely. These compounds include:
- Heterocyclic amines (HCAs): a potent carcinogen, which is created when meat or fish is cooked at high temperatures
- Sodium nitrite: a commonly used preservative and antimicrobial agent that also adds color and flavor to processed and cured meats
- Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs): Many processed meats are smoked as part of the curing process, which causes PAHs to form
- Advanced Glycation End Products (AGEs): When food is cooked at high temperatures—including when it is pasteurized or sterilized—it increases the formation of AGEs in your food. AGEs build up in your body over time leading to oxidative stress, inflammation and an increased risk of heart disease, diabetes and kidney disease
If you absolutely must have a hot dog or other processed meats once in a while you can reduce your risk by:
- Looking for 'uncured' varieties that contain NO nitrates
- Choosing varieties that say 100% beef, 100% chicken, etc. This is the only way to know that the meat is from a single species and does not include byproducts (like chicken skin or chicken fat or other parts)
- Avoiding any meat that contains MSG, high-fructose corn syrup, preservatives, artificial flavor or artificial color
10. Eggs Raise Your Cholesterol
You can forget about such concerns, because contrary to popular belief, eggs are one of the healthiest foods you can eat and they do not have a detrimental impact on cholesterol levels. One study conducted by the Yale Prevention Research Center and published in 2010, showed that egg consumption did not cause a spike on cholesterol levels. The participants of the Yale study ate two eggs per day for a period of six weeks. So go ahead and eat eggs because there are many benefits associated with eggs, including:
- One egg contains 6 grams of high quality protein and all 9 essential amino acid
- Eggs are good for your eyes because they contain lutein and zeaxanthin, antioxidants found in your lens and retina. These two compounds help protect your eyes from damage caused by free radicals and avoid eye diseases like macular degeneration and cataracts
- Eggs are a good source of choline (one egg contains about 300 micrograms), a member of the vitamin B family essential for the normal function of human cells and helps regulate the nervous and cardiovascular systems. Choline is especially beneficial for pregnant mothers as it influences normal brain development of the unborn child
- Eggs are one of the few foods that contain naturally occurring vitamin D (24.5 grams)
- Eggs may help promote healthy hair and nails due to their high sulphur content
- Eggs also contain biotin, calcium, copper, folate, iodine, iron, manganese, magnesium, niacin, potassium, selenium, sodium, thiamine, vitamin A, vitamin B2, vitamin B12, vitamin E and zinc