Myth Busters: Nutrition
With all the misinformation surrounding nutrition, it’s time to get down to the truth! Here are some common myths and their nutrition reality. Test yourself to see if you're getting fooled by a myth.
Eating right before bed will make you fat.
False! Your body processes calories the same no matter what time you eat. Eating too much, period, will affect your weight. Now, eating right before bed does increase your chances of having an episode of gastric reflux or regurgitation, so for comfort reasons try to stop eating at least a couple hours before you go to sleep.
Low carbohydrate diets will help you lose more weight than reduced calorie diets.
False! Low carbohydrate diets (less than 35% of energy intake from carbohydrates) generally help people lose more weight in the first 6-months of a diet but within one year there is no difference in weight loss between practicing a low carbohydrate diet versus a reduced calorie diet.
All fat is bad.
False! Oils, such as olive oil and canola oil, contain unsaturated fats which are protective against heart disease when eaten in the correct portions. That word “portion” is key though; oils have just as many calories as butter or stick margarine. Butter and stick margarine have less healthy fats, saturated fat and trans fat respectively, which can increase the risk for heart disease. Need something spreadable? Choose trans-fat free tub margarines which are made with higher amounts of good, unsaturated fats.
Canned and frozen vegetables have fewer nutrients than fresh.
False! There is no nutrient difference between canned, frozen, fresh or dried. In fact, sometimes canned or frozen can have more nutrients because they are processed at the peak of the season when nutrient levels are highest rather than fresh which may lose a few nutrients while in a warehouse or in shipping. Get your fruits and veggies anyway you can. Just remember, go for no-salt-added or in-it’s-own juice canned products and avoid frozen packages with added sugar or sauces.
Organic foods are healthier than conventional foods.
False! Research shows there is no difference in the vitamin and mineral content between organic foods versus conventional foods. The difference between organic versus conventionally produced food is the way it is grown, handled, and processed. Organic produce is grown without the use of chemical fertilizers, insecticides or herbicides and organic meat comes from animals that were not give antibiotics or growth hormones. Organic farming has an emphasis on renewable resources and conservation of soil and water to improve environmental quality.
Now that you are armed with this information, go forth and be healthy!