It’s pretty difficult to keep up with the latest medical advice these days. It’s even harder to find out when something has been superseded or debunked because just like the rest of us the medical profession hates to admit it got it wrong!
Here are a few snippets of information that may help you make informed choices in the future. Click the red links to find out more.
- Eggs are bad for you. False. Eggs have enough vitamins and minerals in them to grow an entire chicken. They are low carbohydrate and low fat. These little protein bundles are the perfect food to start the day on, and consuming protein first thing has been proven to reduce calorie intake for the rest of the day. Eggs raise the levels of HDL, High Density Lipoprotein, which to you and I is ‘good cholesterol’.
- Multivitamins make you healthier. False. If you have an adequate diet there is no need at all to take a multivitamin supplement each day. Multivitamins are big business and we have been told for years that we should take them. Unless you are debilitated, or have a diet that you know is lacking in certain vitamins or minerals there’s no point buying them. If you decide you want to be on the safe side, you want to make sure you have everything you should have, consider cheap generic brands. Fancy boxes and big names don’t alter the amount of vitamin you are getting.
- Skimmed milk is better for kids. False. Actually studies reveal that kids drinking skim milk from an early age have higher levels of obesity. Full fat milk is more satisfying and actually the fats, good ones might I add, are what contributes largely to the satiety factor of drinking the milk. The vitamin and mineral content of full fat Versus skimmed is surprising. Full fat contains marginal more B2 (Riboflavin), B3 (Niacin), B5 (Pantothenic acid), selenium and vitamin E. Skim contains more carbohydrates, quite a lot more sodium and potassium, something those with kidney issues may need to think about and marginally more vitamin A, Vitamin B12 and vitamin D.
- Salt is bad. False. Based almost entirely on faulty research and the findings of a single cardiologist who was asked by the American Heart Association to give his findings. Salt is actually beneficial to the body in many ways and we need it in our diet to stay healthy. Salt ensures muscles work properly, that vital fluid balance is maintained and plays a part in some of the bio-feedback loops essential for good health.
- Don’t eat fats. False. There are many types of fats, some good, some bad. It is way beyond the scope of this article to go through them all but I recommend you read this, which gives an easy to read overview, with back up research about all types of dietary fat. Saturated fats have been demonised for years but there’s no need to be afraid of them, in moderation they are actually good for you!
- Eat more carbs. False. The dietary advice on carbohydrate consumption given to Americans and the rest of the Western World has sparked a massive rise in obesity. A high carb diet spikes blood sugar levels which in turn causes a rise in insulin. Ultimately this makes you feel hungry so you eat again and the whole thing just keeps on rolling – not good. You can read more about the mechanism of how carbohydrates affect the body here.
- Fresh food or bust. False. Studies have proven that some frozen fruit and veg is actually healthier than fresh food that has been left standing for a while. As soon as fresh food is picked or dug up it starts to degrade so companies that freeze their fruit and veg quickly after harvest are preserving the vitamin content of the food. Growing your own or buying from farm shops and farmers markets on the day you intend to use your veggies ensures the food you buy is fresh and bursting with goodness. Supermarket produce, shipped half way around the world and backlit with lights that make it look like it was picked that morning are best avoided.
As with all things common sense and moderation are the key with diet. Eating fresh foods on the day of purchase and storing food correctly helps maintain the vitamin and mineral content of the food. Making informed choices means looking into the research around dietary advice, or finding a site that does the research for you. I very seldom, if ever actually recommend another site, I’m a bit selfish like that, but I have made a gem of a discovery. Authority Nutrition has very up to date and fully referenced information. This is not the author making it up, this guy looks into it and references his work…I can’t fault it, and all those of you who have been reading my stuff for a while know that’s a rarity for me!
Oh, and for the sceptics, no, he didn’t pay me to say that. Good advice is hard to find and I like to share information that I know can make a difference.