Dieting is filled with pervasive myths, which is especially disconcerting because diet is one of the most important things when it comes to health and fitness. Misinformation is often passed on unknowingly by people who actually want to help. That’s why everyone needs to verify what they know and to always get their information from a credible resource. Here, we round up the most common dieting myths and discuss why they’re false.
Myth: You Just Need to Eat Less
Truth: You Need to Track Your Macros
A very common misconception when it comes to dieting is that all you need to do is eat less. While eating less is indeed crucial, it’s not just a matter of cutting your portions in half. You also need to take into consideration what kind of food you’re eating. It needs to have your daily dietary requirement of nutrients, vitamins, and minerals.
Fortunately, technology is here to help you. There are many tools to help you keep your macros. Augmented reality apps of all kinds exist- from ones that fetch the value of rare items to ones that can scan what food you’re showing and tell you what nutrients it contains. You can also use apps to log down how much you’ve been eating and what the contents of the food you’re taking are.
Myth: Skipping Meals Will Burn Fat
Truth: Smaller Portioning is the Proper Way
A diet fad that a lot of people fall for too often is that to lose weight, just don’t eat as much. And this translates as skipping meals for many of us. This is actually not a good solution, because all it’s doing is making you sluggish due to not having enough energy you’re supposed to be getting from food. In addition, your cravings get stronger and you might end up overeating on your next meal.
To help you lose weight, it’s much better to control your portions. The total amount of food that you eat in one meal is your portion of food. To do this, it’s good to do meal prep so you can measure and control your meals. Good portion control can help you balance your blood sugar levels and also helps with your digestion. And as an extra perk, controlling portions can also help you save money since you won’t be eating more than what’s recommended.
Myth: Fat-free Helps with Losing Weight
Truth: Sugar is the Real Enemy
It’s common to see a wide variety of processed food and drinks that advertise less fat or less sugar in them. Particularly in a lot of processed food products, the option for low fat is advertised to be the healthier option, but is it, really? While there are studies that claim fatty foods to be linked to obesity and heart problems, it’s not exactly the one true reason for weight gain and the struggle to lose weight.
For starters, sugar has addictive qualities and it’s especially hard to control this “addiction” when you grow up eating sugary cereal for breakfast. Sugar also stimulates insulin release, which can be dangerous if your body constantly has to produce it. High sugar intake can lead to the body becoming insulin resistant, eventually leading to type-2 diabetes. Of course, all this doesn’t mean it’s okay to eat more fatty food though. The bottom line is to be aware of what’s in the food that you eat and to cut down on them.
Myth: Fat Burners are Effective
Truth: Calorie Deficit is the Only Way to “Lose Fat”
We often see advertisements claiming that their supplement “burns fat” and makes you lose calories. Interestingly, you will never see such advertisements in actual hospitals or medical clinics because they’re unfounded and unscientific. For the uninitiated, these claims might sound like a dream come true. But the reality is, losing weight can only be possible through a calorie deficit.
A calorie deficit happens when the amount of calories you consume is less than the calories that you burn. This is what makes the combination of diet and exercise very effective. By eating smaller portions and moving more than you usually do, you will be expending calories- commonly known as “fat-burning”. This is the only scientific and safe way to lose weight. Don’t fall into the marketing propaganda many fitness companies pull off and warn your loved ones about it too.
Diet is important to our health, that’s something that can never be denied. But with all the misinformation going around, it’s difficult to actually know what’s right and what’s wrong. It’s important to double-check the information you’re getting and to make sure that it’s based on science and research, and not just opinion.