A diet myth is advice that becomes popular without facts to back it up. When it comes to weight loss, many popular beliefs are myths and others are only partly true. Here are some facts to help you sort through what you hear.
– Starches are fattening and should be limited when trying to lose weight.
Fact : Many foods high in starch, like bread, rice, pasta, cereals, beans, fruits, and some vegetables (like potatoes and yams) are low in fat and calories. They become high in fat and calories when eaten in large portion sizes or when covered with high-fat toppings like butter, sour cream, or mayonnaise. Foods high in starch (also called complex carbohydrates) are an important source of energy for your body.
Tip : A healthy eating plan is one that:
– Emphasizes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and fat-free or low-fat milk and milk products.
– Includes lean meats, poultry, fish, beans, eggs, and nuts.
– Is low in saturated fats, trans fat, cholesterol, salt (sodium), and added sugars.
Myth 4 :
– Certain foods, like grapefruit, celery, or cabbage soup, can burn fat and make you lose weight.
Fact : No foods can burn fat. Some foods with caffeine may speed up your metabolism (the way your body uses energy, or calories) for a short time, but they do not cause weight loss.
Tip : The best way to lose weight is to cut back on the number of calories you eat and be more physically active.
Myth 5 :
– Natural or herbal weight-loss products are safe and effective.
Fact : A weight-loss product that claims to be “natural” or “herbal” is not necessarily safe. These products are not usually scientifically tested to prove that they are safe or that they work. For example, herbal products containing ephedra (now banned by the U.S. Government) have caused serious health problems and even death. Newer products that claim to be ephedra-free are not necessarily danger-free, because they may contain ingredients similar to ephedra.
Tip : Talk with your health care provider before using any weight-loss product. Some natural or herbal weight-loss products can be harmful.
Come back tomorrow for busting more weight loss and nutrition myths.