If you know me, you know how much I dislike seeing the words “research suggests” or “surveys show” when it comes to food!
One week it’s this and another it’s that.
Eggs are good, but not the yolk. Milk is fine, as long as it’s low fat. Red meat should only be eaten once a week. Fish is good for your brain cells. Salt is bad for you.
Not long after you read such things, new research comes along to suggest exactly the opposite!
Unfortunately, the Internet does not help.
It is rife with misinformation and it can be really difficult to tell what’s evidence-based, without reading the original research yourself.
And myths that were previously passed through word of mouth are now spread quickly by social media, blogs and even established media outlets.
Case in point, earlier this week I came across an article headed: ‘Exposed: 8 of nutrition’s biggest myths.”
I will share just two of these myths and you can decide whether to discount them, based on the “latest studies”.
We often hear that breakfast is the most important meal of the day.
Another popular claim is that skipping breakfast can crash your metabolism.
But it seems consuming a regular breakfast has been over-hyped, with studies in both lean and overweight individuals suggesting skipping breakfast does not inherently slow your resting metabolic rate.
Apparently, we don’t need to eat breakfast to be healthy or lose weight.
Eat fat, gain fat.
For many decades, the traditional way to lose weight has been to subject yourself to a low-fat diet.
Yet current evidence suggests that, given the same caloric deficit and protein intake, low-fat and low-carb diets produce similar weight loss.
Moreover, while low-fat diets are not inherently unhealthy, shunning all fat from your diet can be dangerous.
That is because your body needs to consume at least some omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids.
As for saturated fat being the main driver of cardiovascular disease: yes, just another myth apparently.
You may have also heard that eating bread is all right, as long as it’s whole-wheat bread because it is healthier.
So what about the recent “truth”?
Well, although whole-wheat bread is claimed to be far healthier than white bread, it turns out they are not that different!
If I were you, I would take everything you read with a pinch of salt.
Oh, and don’t worry. Most people will benefit more from a diet of unprocessed food than they would from micromanaging their salt intake!