Are these popular diet mantras fact or fiction?

Are these popular diet mantras fact or fiction?

Fact or fiction? Dieting advice comes from all directions – on social media, in books, from celebrities and even our family and friends. It can be difficult to hear at times, especially because so many “tips” don’t actually ring true. Melodi Peters, a registered dietitian at Advocate Good Shepherd Hospital in Barrington, Ill., weighs in on some popular myths.

Myth #1 – Drinking smoothies will help you lose weight

“Most smoothies are primarily fruit and vegetables, which are loaded with carbohydrates,” warns Peters. “The liquid smoothie leaves your stomach quickly, creating a spike in blood sugar. The insulin response following a smoothie can leave you feeling tired and hungry. My advice is to eat your fruit and vegetables. Never drink them.”

Myth #2 – Eating at night makes you fat

Does it really matter what time of day you eat? There is no proof that late-night meals cause you to put on weight. However, we do know that consuming too many calories causes weight gain, and many night eaters do tend to overeat. Try to stick to earlier mealtimes.

Myth #3 – Athletes need a ton of extra protein

If you are training for the Chicago Marathon or are an athlete of any kind, keep this in mind: Most diets provide plenty of protein, even for athletes. The real secret to boosting athletic strength and muscle is to get enough calories and focus on intense training.

Myth #4 – Coffee is bad for you

Drinking two to three cups of coffee a day can be a safe part of a healthy diet. In fact, research suggests coffee may help reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, gallstones, Parkinson’s disease and even some cancers. But for dieters trying to lose weight, avoid coffee condiments, such as cream, sugar and other flavored syrups.

Myth #5 – You should eliminate fat from your diet

Your body needs fats as well as protein and carbohydrates. Good-for-you fats found in foods like nuts, avocado, olives and low-fat dairy give you energy, help rebuild cells, and produce needed hormones. The fats to limit or avoid are saturated and trans fats, found in foods like butter, high-fat dairy, red meat and many processed foods.

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Comments

2 Comments

  1. Cite the evidence for these claims, particularly the one about limiting saturated fat. This assertion is by no means without controversy.

  2. I agree with Samir. Americans have become fat phobic and in the process have loaded themselves up with excess carbs. The original study that linked saturated fats to heart disease has since been found to be seriously flawed. Americans have gone on low fat diets and have loaded up on what they think are healthy carbs causing a huge increase in type 2 diabetes and and increase in heart disease. The new studies have shown that excessive carbs actually cause heart disease by causing inflamation which they have known in Europe for some time; not an excuse for overdoing it with saturated fat and getting enough omega 3’s is also important. Doctors need to update themselves on diet recommendations!

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health enews Staff
health enews Staff

health enews staff is a group of experienced writers from our Advocate Health Care sites, also including freelance or intern writers.