Busting Diet Myths
Reviewed by: Erica An, BNurt&Diet
The internet is a funny place when it comes to advice on what to put in your body to lose weight. With articles upon articles contradicting one another on diets, we had our 12WBT dietitian bust some of the big myths that have been going around.
1. You can eat all the raw/ organic food you like
It’s always surprising when I hear people talking about organic foods, thinking they are some miracle food that will do wonders to your body. The definition of organic is food that is grown or produced without synthetic chemicals such as pesticides and artificial fertilisers. Organic food can include fruit, vegetables, meat, legumes, grains, dairy eggs, honey and also some processed foods. It doesn’t make any difference to the nutritional profile of the food. By all means, it’s great knowing that this type of food is free from chemicals. But, it makes no difference to the calories so the same rules apply to organic foods as they do to non-organic foods.
2. Eggs raise your blood cholesterol level
Historically eggs have been known to be high in cholesterol therefore raising blood cholesterol levels. In recent years, this has been proven to be a myth. We know that your blood cholesterol levels are best lowered by reducing your intake of saturated fats (ie fat that is derived from an animal). There is little association between egg intake and blood cholesterol levels. Additionally, linking eggs to coronary heart disease in the general population is another myth. Consuming eggs daily as part of a healthy diet, that is in line with the National Heart Foundation of Australia is recommended.
3. Don’t eat after 7pm
I hear this comment quite a bit and there’s absolutely no logical explanation for it nor is there any scientific evidence to support it. By all means, eating a lot of food quite close to bed time is not ideal. Leaving very little time to digest before going to sleep. Many people would feel quite hungry at this time of night and often after a long day, the most comforting thing to do is eat. This is where many can over eat and significantly blow their calorie intake for the day. This concept of ‘not eating after 7pm’ stands as a rule for many people to help prevent binging on unnecessary foods. I can understand why. Either way, not eating past 7pm will not affect weight loss. Your weight is impacted by the amount of calories you consume, the variety of food you eat and how much activity you do.
4. Fruit is a freebie food
Fruit is one of those foods that many people think they can eat all day long and ‘it doesn’t count’. This is definitely one of the myths. Yes, fruit is a healthy food and it does make up part of the foods that we should be consuming everyday. However like most things, too much of it is not good. The recommended daily intake of fruit is 2 serves a day (one serve being roughly the size of your fist). Although low in calories, they still contain calories and too many calories leads to weight gain. So keep it to about 2 serves a day and you’re on track!!