Diets… Many things have been said around them, both positive and negative… That is why the million dollar question is: what is true and what is not?
In this article, we will try to clarify some of these doubts. Here are 28 most common dieting myths debunked.
1. If you are on a diet you cannot eat chocolates or sweets: MYTH.
It is true that sweets should not be abused (or any food in general, even healthy), but prohibiting any food only generates, at the same time, anxiety about it.
In addition, chocolate that contains at least 70% cocoa is very healthy for its antioxidant properties.
2. When you are on a diet, you have to eliminate the flour containing foods, especially bread and rice: MYTH.
The brain and nervous system need at least 120 grams of carbohydrates (glucose) to perform their functions properly.
Therefore, if we eliminate carbohydrates, we malnourish the brain, and that can result in headaches, concentration problems, bad mood, irritability, and many other bad things.
In addition, we are likely to have desperate cravings and in the long term we will end up eating more.
3. Mayonnaise is another food that you should avoid when you are on a diet because it makes you fat and brings out pimples: MYTH.
Mayonnaise, like any fat, should be eaten in moderation. If you wish, you can consume a small amount like a tablespoon as your portion of lunch fat.
Also, remember that there are the “light” options, which contain less fat.
It is essential to understand that fats are important for our body, and about 20-30% of the total calories in the diet are required to come from fats.
4. Pork is bad for your health and is pure fat: MYTH.
Remember: there is no “bad” food.
Some cuts of pork, such as pork chop and pork rind are very high in fat, and therefore should be eaten in small quantities or can be avoided.
Pork tenderloin is very lean and is a good protein alternative. This is a meat that can be consumed at least once a week without causing damage to your health.
5. You can eat eggs only once a week, because that makes you very fat: MYTH.
The egg is an excellent source of protein. Although it has cholesterol, not all people are sensitive to it, so you can eat about four eggs per week.
If a person has no health problems, they can eat more. Keep in mind that an egg equals one serving of protein.
6. Soft drinks are prohibited when you are on a diet: MYTH.
Nothing is prohibited. However, it is true that regular sodas have large amounts of sugar and do not give satiety, so they can sabotage your attempts to lose weight.
On the other hand, it has been shown that diet sodas (although they have no sugar) can cause an increase in insulin and a reduction in blood sugar, giving a feeling of false hunger.
7. If you go to a fast food restaurant, you can’t eat anything because everything makes you fat: MYTH.
In all restaurants there are healthier options to choose from, such as grilled meat, varied salads and light sodas or bottled water.
8. Drinking green tea or red tea after eating helps you lose weight: MYTH.
Green tea is a powerful antioxidant, so it helps prevent some diseases, but it does not “burn” fat.
However, it is true that one of the benefits of this product is that it speeds up the metabolism.
9. After the afternoon, you should not eat anything because the evening meal is the most fattening: MYTH.
While it is NOT true that the evening meal is more fattening, it is healthy to eat a lighter dinner at least two hours before bedtime, to promote digestion and increase metabolism.
Remember that, just as you should not skip breakfast, you should not skip dinner.
10. Cream cheese, butter and jellies are things that you can’t put on bread when you are on a diet: MYTH.
Yes, you can use them, but in small amounts and preferably you should opt for the light options.
11. It is best to substitute even natural fresh water, because water does not provide calories: MYTH.
This depends on the specific needs of each person.
If it is a natural juice that you prepare in the blender with fresh fruit, it contains a high amount of fiber, vitamins and minerals, and it will be very beneficial for your health.
In addition to this juice, you will need to drink at least eight glasses of water to keep your body hydrated.
12. Ketogenic diets, in which excess fat is ingested, are good for your health: MYTH.
Ketogenic diets involve a high fat and protein content. Nutritionists do not recommend them because they could raise blood lipids and cause a pH imbalance.
13. Red meat is bad for your health: MYTH.
Although a higher consumption of white meat is recommended in our diet, red meat should not be eliminated, unless you have a very good reason to do so.
You can consume red meat up to three times a week, choosing cuts that do not have much extra fat.
The secret is to combine it with a diet high in fiber (fruits, vegetables, whole grain products), low in saturated fat and regulate the portions.
14. Dissociated diets work, because they do not lack any type of food or nutrient, but they do not allow to combine or ingest some of them simultaneously: MYTH.
These types of diets have no scientific basis, so they can lead to colon problems, constipation, gastritis, etc.
Remember that combining carbohydrates, protein and fat in the same meal helps you feel more satiety, control cravings and maintain a good mood.
15. Low-calorie diets are the solution to lose weight because they are based on insufficient energy intake: TRUTH.
While we eat less than the body needs, or spend more energy than we consume, we can lose weight.
Always keep in mind that no food groups should be excluded.
16. Monotrophic diets (for example, pineapple diet, apple diet, etc.) are good for our health: MYTH.
You can lose weight quickly because you almost do not eat, but most of this weight is water. In addition, losing weight in a very short period can cause frustration, anxiety, hopelessness, constipation and bad mood, among other unwanted effects.
17. In a good weight loss diet, 60% of total energy must come from carbohydrates, 15 to 20% from proteins and 25% from fats: TRUTH.
Roughly these are the ideal proportions, but it depends on the special characteristics of each person.
18. It is recommended not to lose more than 1 to 1.5 kg per week: TRUTH.
The rate of weight loss depends on each person, so the lost weight should not be the most important thing when starting to eat well.
You should focus on the things like feeling more comfortable, having greater mobility, relieving pain associated with being overweight, improving mood, among many others.
19. Those who are always on a diet, keep their body in a “state of emergency”. Over time, they will have more difficulty losing weight, even reducing amount of food ingested: TRUTH.
When diets are made without supervision, our body tends to slow down, and health problems such as colitis, constipation or gastritis arise.
When you learn to eat with an adequate eating plan, the body gets used to eating well and the meal times.
20. When you are on a diet, chicken and fish are your only sources of protein: MYTH.
It is true that chicken and fish are foods of high nutritional value, low in fat, high in protein, and in the case of fish, high in omega 3 fatty acids.
However, they are not the only types of protein that can be consumed, since you can also choose seafood, red meat and pork tenderloin occasionally; White cheeses, cold meats, seeds, and beans, among others. The secret is in variety and the right portion size.
21. Low carb and protein rich diets are the best option to lose weight: TRUTH.
Generally, for an active person, a low carb diet is recommended (does not mean carbs should be completely eliminated). A diet rich in protein is also a good option.
22. The more fat we eat, the more fat we will accumulate in the body: MYTH.
The fat we consume does not accumulate directly as fat in the body.
However, care should be taken with the amount of fat consumed, because it can lead to heart problems, as well as high cholesterol, among others.
23. The body converts into fat everything we consume after 8pm: MYTH.
It is the total calories of the day that defines whether we gain weight or accumulate fat.
It is better to distribute food in five to six meal times (breakfast, lunch, dinner and two to three snacks), and choose a lighter meal for dinner.
24. Water helps the body metabolize stored fat: MYTH.
Water helps hydrate, transport nutrients, digest nutrients, but does not intervene in fat metabolism.
25. Fasting or eating less than 2 times a day helps you lose weight: MYTH.
Fasting to lose weight is an ineffective and possibly dangerous method.
Remember that eating several times a day is much more positive for weight loss, because this speeds up the metabolism.
26. Honey fattens less than sugar: MYTH.
It contains practically the same amount of calories.
27. Hot water helps burn fat: MYTH.
Hot water can help relieve the feeling of fullness, but not lose weight or burn fat.
28. If you consume only light products, you will lose weight: MYTH.
Light products are products that have less fat or sugar than the “regular” version of the product.
However, this does not mean that you can eat them completely freely, as they still provide calories, fat and sugar, only in a smaller proportion.
Be very careful with “crazy diets”!
Keep in mind that among the benefits like losing weight quickly, there are also negative consequences like:
– Losing more muscle mass and water than body fat – Reduced metabolism – Not receiving the necessary nutrients for the proper functioning of the body – Releasing more ghrelin hormone, which increases the amount of cravings and reduces the possibility of resisting them
As a result, it is more difficult for the lost weight to be maintained, so the “bounce effect” is presented, which leads to the person gaining more and more weight in a shorter time (returning to a weight greater than the one they had before starting the diet) and it becomes more difficult to lose it again.
Also, unhealthy diets can lead to the appearance of eating disorders and in some cases, to anorexia or bulimia.
Remember that if you want to lose weight, the healthiest way is to find a trusted nutritionist, so that you can establish a meal plan according to your needs.