Greetings, Sonoma. Are you ready for some mind blowing information that will help you along your path to a healthier way of living? Then stick around. I am sharing some of the most common nutrition myths out there because I want you to be able to make the right choices when it comes to your health.
1. Low fat is best.
This old-school way of thinking is now being looked at with new perspective by many health researchers and professionals. For starters, what happens when you remove fat from a product? Not only do you denature it, but you also remove taste, which is why many low fat products are highly processed with added sugars, fake sugars, and artificial sweeteners. Fact is, since the low-fat craze hit the scene, Americans have only gotten fatter. (hint- blame sugar, not fat) More importantly, we need fat. Lots of it. Healthy fats, though, such as avocado, nuts, olive oil, coconut oil, and yes, even butter. Quality is important — I recommend butter from grass fed cows, and oils that are minimally processed and organic. Fats from animals can be part of a healthy diet as long as they are from clean, animal sources and not processed in a way that makes them unhealthy. Think wild and organic. Think full fat from natural and organic sources.
2. Eggs increase risk of heart disease.
Not! In fact, eggs have quite the opposite effect on health. With healthy fats, biotin, antioxidants, and more, egg yolks are one of the healthiest foods you can consume. Repeat after me, “Dietary cholesterol is not a main cause of raising cholesterol in the blood.” In fact, eggs help raise “good” cholesterol and provide loads of other great health benefits. So eat your yolks, folks!
3. Fats/Saturated fats are bad for you.
I find this one especially interesting, because while many people can tell you that saturated fats are bad, most cannot even tell you what a saturated fat is. Saturated fats are an important part of a healthy diet. It’s unfortunate that some past research came out inconclusively pointing to fat (especially saturated fat) as the cause of heart disease. Well, we now know that we were blaming the wrong fats. It’s the processed and trans fats that are the problem. Natural saturated fats are not only OK, they are actually an important part of a healthy diet. So eat your coconut oil, which is a medium chain triglyceride, a fat that burns like a carb. It’s great for the metabolism in addition to having great viral and bacterial fighting abilities.
4. Everyone should be eating grains.
Ugh. This is my biggest gripe as far as nutrition myths go…. Trust me when I tell you, you can live without grains. In fact, you would be a lot healthier if you would give up grains all together. Grains, in general, deliver little nutrition and they tend to be very pro-inflammatory. Many people are intolerant to grains and have a difficult time digesting them. There are better ways to get your nutrients per calorie. Try fruits, veggies, seeds, lean proteins and healthy fats. Americans are addicted to their grains. Try going grain free (The book “Practical Paleo” is a good resource) for a month, and watch your energy go up and your waistline go down.
5. Sugar substitutes are okay.
Sugar is way over consumed, we all know that. So in an effort to do the right thing many people purchase sugar substitutes such as Splenda and Equal. Well, let me tell you, not only are they not equal, they are actually even worse for you than sugar. They are highly processed substitutes that are found to promote weight gain, and in some cases to be neurological problems. Don’t have sweetened drinks as part of your daily routine. Aspartame, which has been linked to neurological issues, is found today in almost all gum, breath mints and diet sodas. Do your research and learn about the various sugar substitutes on the market, and when you do, be sure to know who is putting out the research. I like Mercola.com. There is also a great book recently out called “Fat Chance” by Dr. Robert Lustig.
Well, there you have it, a few nutrition myth busters to start you on your way to better health. Give them a try for 30 days and see how you feel. Until next month…be well.