10 misconceptions about nutrition and diets


Much information circulates in various media about nutrition and health, among this much distorted and some supported by scientific basis. Here are 10 misconceptions about nutrition and diets.

1. Negative energy balance to lose weight.

While the energy balance estimates the intake of calories consumed vs energy expenditure. To lose weight, you must not only have a negative balance, this is higher energy expenditure than the calories consumed.

It is only one factor to consider when losing or maintaining weight. There are other variables that influence and that must be considered, such as the state of health in general, diseases such as hypothyroidism, genetic factors, metabolic adaptations and certain medications, among others.

2. Foods high in fat are unhealthy.

It is important not to generalize, as there are foods that contain “good fats” that are beneficial for cardiovascular health and can even help you lose or maintain a healthy weight.

3. Breakfast should be the main meal of the day.

For years it was argued that breakfast should be the main meal. However, research indicates that skipping breakfast in adults may be associated with certain health benefits.

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Or even a 14-16 hour intermittent fast could offer many benefits for some adults. However, for some people a good breakfast is also healthy, depending on age, physical activity, health status, age, among other factors.

4. Including several small, frequent meals is healthy.

Although this trend was observed in past decades and is even recommended in some conditions such as gastroesophageal reflux, diabetes, irritable bowel syndrome, among others.

It is not necessarily recommended for healthy people, two or three regular meals a day is sufficient, as long as the energy and nutrient recommendations are covered.

5. Potatoes are fattening.

Potatoes are prohibited in many weight loss diets because they are considered to be fattening; however, a medium potato on average contains only 100 calories, is a source of vitamin C, potassium and fiber.

It can be included in diets to lose weight, it is even convenient since they give satiety. The important thing is the way it is cooked to avoid adding extra calories and preferring to prepare them in the oven, boiled or roasted.

6. Low-fat diet products are healthy.

Many low-fat diet foods contain more sugar and salt than the regular version. It is always advisable to read the nutritional content labels and prefer regular foods such as yogurt and cheese with fat in moderation and without higher sugar and salt content.

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7. Losing weight is quick and easy.

Many advertisements for diet or supplement products promise quick, short-term solutions to weight loss. While it took a person months or even years to gain weight, it could take the same time to lose weight.

There are no “magic” solutions that can lose weight immediately, it requires perseverance and change in lifestyle to achieve medium and long-term goals.

There are programs such as MyDiet that offer personalized meal plans for gradual and healthy weight loss, according to food preferences and restrictions.

8. Smoothies and juices are healthy.

Although some juices and smoothies have many nutrients, such as a juice or smoothie with vegetables because it is a source of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.

However, it is necessary to consume only one serving of fruit juice, even if it is natural, that is, half a glass. And avoid industrialized juices or smoothies with excess sugar and calories.

If consumed in excess they promote weight gain, tooth decay, dysregulation of blood sugar.

9. Carbohydrates lead to weight gain.

It has long been believed that carbohydrates should be restricted in weight loss diets. However, a balanced diet should contain high-fiber carbohydrates, vitamins, and minerals such as starchy tubers, whole grains, and legumes.

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A Mediterranean diet has even been seen to promote cardiovascular health, as it contains complex carbohydrates, fruit, vegetables, healthy fats, and protein.

However, it is recommended to restrict or avoid excessive consumption of foods with simple carbohydrates or sugary drinks such as: sodas or soft drinks, cakes, cookies, white bread due to its relationship with weight gain and obesity, metabolic syndrome and increased risk of diseases.

10. Low calorie diets are the best for weight loss.

While a deficit of 500 calories a day promotes a weight loss of 1 pound (450 g) a week, a very low calorie diet is not necessary to lose weight.

In low-calorie diets, the weight lost is usually regained in the medium or long term. Even a diet of less than 1200 calories could put health at risk by not providing the necessary daily nutrients and can lead to metabolic decompensations and long-term health consequences. It is necessary to be under medical supervision.

Remember MyDiet provides you with personalized meal plans suitable for you based on your energy recommendations, current weight, height, physical activity, adjusted to the calories you need and that allow you to lose weight gradually and safely.

Recent supported medical findings are necessary to change certain trends in diet that have persisted for decades.

Getting informed and changing beliefs about some myths is the first step before putting them into practice.

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