So-called “nutrition experts” can often offer confusing and contradicting advice. Simple carbohydrates are the cause of your growing waistline a week; Fruits and sugar are closest to the culprits. A Low Fat Diet Is The Key To Losing Weight – Or Is It A Low Carbohydrate Diet? Like the Instagram sensation, Sarah’s discovery for weight loss discusses. Diet counseling is amazingly complex and is constantly changing. It can make you make bad decisions about what to eat and even prevent you from reaching your weight loss goal. I’m sure you’ve heard of diet & weight loss myths and it can be confusing to determine what’s real and what’s not.
While you can’t always rely on diet experts for wisdom, here is something that never fails: advice from peer-reviewed scientific studies. Scientifically proven facts can help dispel many common diet errors and myths. Once you are aware of these facts, you will be on your way to a healthier lifestyle. Here, we’ve put together the top 5 diet & weight loss myths vs the real fact.
Common Diet Myths and Mistakes
Myth # 1: Skipping breakfast slows down your metabolism
Almost all diet magazines and websites claim that skipping a healthy breakfast can harm your weight loss goals. Some claim that eating at breakfast is less likely to be annoying during lunch, which is by no means an outrageous claim. But some go further by claiming that skipping breakfast can slow your metabolism, making it harder to burn calories.
The Instagram sensation Sarah’s discovery for weight loss shows a direct correlation between eating breakfast and consuming fewer calories, but scientists have never found a link between poor breakfast eating habits and poor metabolism. In addition, the people in these studies show that people who eat breakfast generally have better lifestyle habits, such as being more physically active and consuming less fat.
However, correlation is not causality. Anecdotal evidence shows that people can skip breakfast while still losing weight and body fat – like the results shown by those who practice intermittent fasting.
The Bottom Line
if skipping breakfast causes you to overeat later in the day, don’t skip it. However, unless you are feeling really hungry, don’t force yourself to eat.
Myth # 2: Frequent meals speed up your metabolism
If you really want to crank that metabolism up – and you do if you want to lose weight – many diet experts say a key is to eat frequent, small healthy meals. Constantly delivering a constant stream of calories into your body supposedly keeps your metabolism high and allows you to lose weight with less exertion. Some even go so far as to say that it has been scientifically proven, but that is not necessarily the case.
Although many studies have been conducted, more than 10 have found no association between frequent eating and weight loss. In addition, research published in the British Journal of Nutrition evaluated those who found a relationship and concluded that the results were likely biased by two factors: insufficient meal frequency and changes in eating habits after entering the study.
It also reviewed studies that disproved an association between frequent meals and metabolic surge and concluded that meal frequency rarely improves weight loss – a fact that contradicts the advice in many diet magazines or articles.
The Bottom Line
If you want to lose weight, eating frequently is not necessarily a reliable diet strategy. If you really like eating smaller, more frequent meals, approach them, but don’t force yourself to eat more meals in hopes of losing weight. Also, if you try to eat yourself more often, you could end up consuming more calories which, as we all know, leads to weight gain.
Myth # 3: Foods with a low glycemic index promote weight loss and satiety
To lose weight – and relieve hunger – many dieters recommend eating foods with a low glycemic index, or GI. Foods that break down quickly, like white bread and white rice, are considered high-GI and not good for weight loss; Foods that are the slowest to break down, such as whole grains, vegetables, and nuts, are considered low-GI or good for weight loss.
Some diet experts claim that foods with high GI can cause blood sugar instability, which in turn makes people feel hungry faster, leading to overeating and snacking. Allegedly, this blood sugar instability can make even a person who is linked to diabetes insulin resistant.
While the science seems compelling, studies of the glycemic index often produce mixed results. In a 1996 study published by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, healthy men who ate a high GI diet for 30 days were less insulin resistant than men who ate a low GI diet. However, their weight did not gain, which is contrary to what most experts expect from high GI food consumption.
In addition, a scientific review of 31 studies inconclusive showed that low GI foods suppress appetite. Of the 31 studies mentioned above, 15 studies showed a higher feeling of satiety in low GI diets, but a majority of 16 studies showed that low GI diets did not relieve appetite.
The Bottom Line
The results aren’t conclusive, but there’s not enough evidence to suggest that avoiding high glycemic index foods is necessary to feel longer, lose weight, or reduce your risk of diabetes. While you shouldn’t ingest excessively high GI foods, you don’t necessarily have to avoid all high GI foods to lose weight.
Myth # 4: High fructose corn syrup makes you fat
Obesity has been on the rise since the 1970s – and so has the use of high fructose corn syrup (HFCS), which some belief is the main ingredient in the obesity epidemic, by the way. Diet experts often recommend skipping foods sweetened with HFCS as part of a healthy diet.
While HFCS is correlated with obesity, several peer-reviewed studies and reviews question many of its purported obesity-causing properties. A report produced by the American Medical Association suggests that consumption of all high-calorie sweeteners, not just HFCS, increased along with total calorie consumption, so HFCS alone is not responsible for the obesity epidemic.
Since the 1970s, obesity has also risen in countries where HFCS is not heavily used, such as Mexico. Conversely, HFCS use has also increased in countries where obesity is not an epidemic, such as South Korea, which has one of the lowest obesity rates in the world.
The Bottom Line
If you want to eat a particular food but are scared because it contains HFCS, don’t stress yourself out. Occasionally a food containing HFCS does not consume fat. What makes you fat is consuming too many calories, regardless of the source. Remember, moderation is key!
Myth # 5: “Eat clean” to lose weight
Here is a common phrase you’ll see in diet magazines: “Eat clean.” By his definition, eating clean has many meanings, but most experts define clean eating as eating superfoods high in micronutrients (such as vitamins) that are not processed and are low in fat and “bad carbohydrates”.
For example, clean eaters often think that organic vegetables, lean meat, legumes, and whole grains are extremely clean, whole foods like hamburgers, fruits, whole milk, and white bread are unclean.
While there are some nice nutrients to cleanse your food, it is not necessarily a better way to lose weight. Clean eaters often ignore the golden principle of weight loss: weight loss occurs with a caloric deficit, regardless of the source of the calories. If you eat excess calories while eating clean, you will gain weight.
It should be noted, however, that while you can gain weight with any type of excess calories, clean and healthy eating advocates eating more unprocessed foods that contain more vitamins and minerals and less of the bad stuff (like excess fat, salt, and sugar).
There is also the problem that clean eating dictates rigid eating habits. A 2001 study published in the journal Appetite associated higher body mass index (BMI) with people who followed a rigid diet or tried to diet without being flexible.
Line Eating clean alone won’t help you lose weight if you eat too many calories. You need to monitor your caloric intake just like you would with processed foods. Focus on eating mainly minimally processed, micronutrient-rich foods while monitoring your caloric intake for better health and weight loss success.
If you can add a serving of ice cream or chips to the mixture, do so in moderation, but only if it fits your calorie goals. Eating half a cup of ice cream once or twice a week is okay; Eating half a pint of ice cream in one serving is not okay.
Diet magazines, websites, and even diet experts often over-complicate diets, when in fact simply eating a controlled calorie diet made up mostly of healthy foods can help you achieve your weight loss goals. There is no need to manipulate your metabolism, fear certain foods, or plan your meals.
If you’re struggling to lose weight, check your calorie count first – you’re probably eating too much or too little. Of course, exercise is also important, and most effective weight loss plans require regular exercise combined with eating healthy meals as a way to stay fit while maintaining the weight.
- About the Author
Alex Grigoryan is a Professional Home Improvement and Lifestyle Writer. He has been in the industry for over 6 years and has been writing for Chique Home Living since 2019. His work has been featured in prestigious blogs such as Spruce Home, Better Homes & Garden, and more.