Since the dawn of civilization, there have been myths aplenty surrounding the idea of dieting. Eat this, eat that, definitely don’t eat this, maybe this will help… The list of diet studies are almost endless, and many of them refute one concept only to end up approving it a few years later.

8 Myths About Diets You Must Stop Believing!

So, what works, what doesn’t, and what are the craziest diet myths out there that you need to stop believing in right now?

8 Myths About Diets You Must Stop Believing

  1. Skipping Breakfast – You Actually Can

Is it really the most important meal of the day?

  • The higher your BMI, the less your health value. Studies have shown that those who skip breakfast do indeed have elevated BMIs.
  • On the other hand, it all boils down to personal lifestyle choices; clinical trials have revealed as much.
  • For instance, skipping breakfast causes some people to compensate by eating more during other times of the day. This undoubtedly results in high BMI.
  • Those who were forced to eat breakfast (in these trials/studies), mainly those prone to skipping this meal ended up gaining weight than losing it.

Studies have even shown that your resting metabolic rate (RMR) is not affected by skipping breakfast.

  1. Protein After Workout – Not Necessarily

Exercise-induced damage to muscles demands nutrition to help repair it afterward. That’s how it even gets bigger.

  • Protein’s anabolic influence in this regard is said to be unmatched. We know that muscles become highly sensitive to protein post-workout.
  • What if you were told that the vaunted ‘anabolic window’ is more complicated than just consuming protein after each workout?
  • The ‘window’ in question is highly dependent on precisely how much protein you are digesting at any given time.

Your protein intake per meal following a rigorous workout needs to reflect this. It needs to be at the desired minimum.

  1. Eating Before Bed – You Will Not Get Fat

Though studies have shown that those who eat a few hours before bed lose more fat than those who eat closer to bedtime, here’s another myth-buster for you.

  • There is only a very little difference, nothing extensive enough to warrant celebrating.
  • Diet myths are often based on human trials; emphasis on that last word. Trials are not confirmed versions of how diets work in reality.
  • Your daily caloric intake determines how much fat you lose.
  • A poor dietary lifestyle is almost always the reason for fat gain.
  • Examples: grabbing something unhealthy to consume before bed; eating bits of snacks and sweets whenever you feel tired.
  • People eat to avoid sleep, believing that the extra energy/calories are burned through mental/physical exertion. This is not the case.

You can and will end up gaining weight, and it has little to do with when you eat these ‘extra bites’ before hitting the sheets.

  1. ‘Natural’ Foods Are The Healthiest – Not!

Words like ‘all natural,’ ‘100% natural’, and ‘natural’ are mere marketing gimmicks designed to grab your attention in a world quickly adapting to healthy lifestyles.

  • Meat products with tags like ‘no antibiotics’ and ‘no hormones’ serve much the same purpose as ‘natural.’
  • The core idea is that these so-called special foods are just minimally processed and contain no artificial ingredients, coloring, or preservatives.
  • This can apply to whether the live animal was fed something ‘extra’ and to whether that ‘extra’ was added afterward.
  • In the case of non-meat foods, the lack of any synthetic add-ons can get them labeled ‘natural.’

The ‘natural’ term is applied depending on the production and processing phase. Pesticide use, genetic engineering and modifications, and particular animal husbandry processes are all factored in the discussion that gets a food product labeled ‘natural.’ There is much that consumers might not know.

  1. Dietary Supplements – You Can Go Without

Global warming has inspired intensive agriculture, which in turn has led to crops containing less nutrients than, say, fifty years ago.

  • While some of that is true, you do not need supplements to compensate for any nutrient laxity.
  • Food-based poisons like gluten, cholesterol, and saturated fat have further added to people’s fears, making them rely on supplements all the more.
  • Multi-vitamins, for instance, are not proven means to increase life expectancy, nor are they the only way you can gain access to micronutrients.
  • It comes down to your dietary choices. The right foods cooked well can give your body all the nutrition it needs.
  1. Salt – Not The Villain Everyone Says It Is

Studies have been making the rounds about salt being connected to cognitive decline, kidney harm, and hypertension (high blood pressure). The truth, however, is remarkably different.

  • One of the essential minerals that your body needs is sodium, i.e., salt.
  • The right combination of sodium and potassium can work more ‘health miracles’ than you can imagine.
  • Too much salt is the problem, as opposed to no salt at all.
  • The salt in processed foods is what inspired the ‘unhealthy opinion’ of it.
  • Too much salt or too little has been associated with cardiovascular conditions.

Unless you have salt-sensitive hypertension, your body sure can do with a pinch of salt.

  1. Carbs – They’re The Good Guys

The systematic vilification of carbs has proven just how far some ‘corporates’ are willing to go to sell ‘carb-free’ products.

  • If you happen to be anti-carbs, you may have heard of the insulin index and glycemic index.
  • Low or high, studies have shown no glaring difference in a person’s metabolic syndrome based on these indices.
  • There is no verified proof that a low glycemic diet leads to improved glycemic control.
  • There is also very little evidence to show that obesity and insulin production is linked to carb intake.
  • The kinds of food you eat, and how much you consume in a week, more potently addresses the fat-loss issue than anything carb-centric.

Anyone who wants to lose weight needs to end their day on what is termed a ‘caloric deficit.’ If your carb-addons fall within this notion, you are in the safe zone.

  1. Red Meat – Not A Danger Zone

No, red meat does not cause cancer. Some smoked meats contain polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) that have shown to affect genomes, potentially resulting in cancers.

  • There is no confirmation that red meat directly causes cancer.
  • Eating charred red meat, let alone the heavily processed variety, is the real culprit.
  • If your diet is generally bad, then you are risking all sorts of diseases, and it has little to do with red meat.
  • Everything should be taken in moderation. In that spirit, fruits, veggies, and ‘just enough’ red meat will work wonders for your health.

Three moderate servings of non-processed and aptly cooked red meat will prove beneficial.

Conclusion

Diet myths are just our fears that took wing and became facts in the absence of proof. As seen above, some ideas about food and health can prove disastrously misinformed. The overall aim is to take everything in moderation.

Do not: over-do, under-cook, or consume more than your need. Keep away from unhealthy snacks and heavily processed foods, and you will have taken that first significant step toward a ‘healthy you.’