The following article is a small excerpt from one of my books. I hope you’ll want to learn more and let me help you to get into the best shape of your life.
Is organic always healthier? Are oranges the best source of vitamin C?
The supermarket is rife with less-than-accurate reporting, and not just in the checkout-lane newspaper racks. Walk the aisles scanning food labelsand you’ll see the fallout from millions of lobbying and advertising dollars spent to post faulty claims about health and nutrition. You’ll find row upon endless row of foods that promise to improve your life, flatten your belly, and make you a happier person. The fact is many of these foods do just the opposite. When you learn how to separate fact from fiction you might finally shed the habits that are silently sabotaging your chances of losing weight.
MYTH #1: High fructose corn syrup is worse than table sugar
Whether or not added sugar is bad for you has never been in dispute. The less sugar you eat, the better. But whether HFCS is worse than plain table sugar has long been a matter for debate. Here’s what you need to know: Both HFCS and table sugar, or sucrose, are built with roughly a 50-50 blend of two sugars, fructose, and glucose. That means in all likelihood that your body can’t tell one from the other, they’re both just sugar. HFCS’s real sin is that it’s super cheap, and as a result, it’s added to everything from cereal to ketchup to salad dressing. Plus it may be affecting your health in ways not yet fully understood by the scientific community. Is it a good idea to minimize the HFCS in your diet? Absolutely! It’s best to cut out all unnecessary sugars. But HFCS’s role as nutritional enemy #1 has been exaggerated.
Bonus Tip: Eating fiber and protein-loaded snacks between meals can help you control hunger and avoid overeating at mealtime
MYTH #2: Sea salt is a healthier version of regular salt
Everyday table salt comes from a mine and contains roughly 2,300 milligrams of sodium per teaspoon. Sea salt comes from evaporated seawater, and it also contains roughly 2,300 milligrams of sodium. That makes them, well, roughly identical. Advocates point to the fact that sea salt also contains other compounds like magnesium and iron, but in truth, these minerals exist in trace amounts. To obtain a meaningful dose, you’d have to take in extremely high and potentially dangerous levels of sodium. What’s more, traditional table salt is regularly fortified with iodine, which plays an important role in regulating the hormones in your body. Sea salt, on the other hand, gives you virtually zero iodine. The bottom line is this: If switching from table salt to sea salt causes you to consume more salt, then you’ve just lost any health benefit you hope to receive. Plus you’ve wasted a few bucks. Be Careful, excess sodium in food can be surprisingly sneaky
MYTH #3: Energy drinks are less harmful than soda
Energy drinks attempt to boost your energy with a cache of B vitamins, herbal extracts, and amino acids. But what your body’s going to remember most (especially around your waistline) is the sugar in these drinks where a 16-ounce can delivers as much as 280 calories of pure sugar, which is about 80 calories more than you’d find in a 16-ounce cup of Pepsi. What’s more, a University of Maryland study found energy drinks to be 11 percent more corrosive to your teeth than regular soda. So here’s the secret that energy drink companies don’t want you to know: The only proven, significant energy boost comes from caffeine. If you want an energy boost, save yourself the sugar spike and drink a cup of coffee. Whatever you do, don’t confuse the dessert-in-glass offerings at coffee houses with real java.
MYTH #4: Diet soda is harmless
The obesity research community is becoming increasingly aware that the artificial sweeteners used in diet soda, aspartame and sucralose, for instance, lead to hard-to-control food urges later in the day. One study discovered that rats took in more calories if they’d been fed artificial sweeteners prior to mealtime, and another study found that people who consume just three diet sodas per week were more than 40 percent more likely to be obese. Try weaning yourself off by switching to carbonated water and flavoring with lemon, cucumber, and fresh herbs. If you must get your carbonated fix, make an educated choice that is less fattening and minimize your consumption.
MYTH #5: Low-fat foods are better for you
As it applies to food marketing, the term “low fat” is synonymous with “loaded with salt and cheap carbohydrates.” For instance, look at Smucker’s Reduced Fat Peanut Butter. To replace the fat it skimmed out, Smucker’s added a fast-digesting carbohydrate called maltodextrin. That’s not going to help you lose weight. A 2008 study found that over a 2-year span, people on low-carb diets lost 62 percent more body weight than those trying to cut fat. (Plus, the fat in peanut butter is heart-healthy monounsaturated fat—you’d be better off eating more of it, not less!) The fact is, America’s restaurants and supermarket aisles are bursting with foods making false claims of benefits to your body
MYTH #6: “Trans-fat free” foods are actually trans-fat free
The FDA’s guidelines allow companies to claim 0 grams of trans fat, even broadcast it on the front of their packages as long as the food in question contains no more than 0.5 grams of trans fat per serving. But here’s the deal: Due to an inextricable link to heart disease, the World Health Organization advises people to keep trans fat intake as low as possible, maxing out at about 1 gram per 2,000 calories consumed. If your cupboard’s full of foods with almost half a gram per serving, you might be blowing past that number every single day. Until the FDA rethinks its lax regulations, , you should avoid all foods with “partially hydrogenated oil” (meaning, trans fats) on their ingredients statements.
Bonus Tip: Keeping up with the latest scientific research and food industry shenanigans is a full-time job and who has time for that? That’s why my books ‘Get fit Stay FIT’ and ‘The best you can be’ as well as my audio cd’s are a great resource in helping you to become the best you can be.
MYTH #7: Foods labeled “natural” are healthier
The FDA makes no serious effort to control the use of the word “natural” on nutrition labels. Case in point: 7UP boasts that it’s made with “100% Natural Flavors” when, in fact, the soda is sweetened with a decidedly un-natural dose of high fructose corn syrup. “Corn” is natural, but “high fructose corn syrup” is produced using a centrifuge and a series of chemical reactions. Other “natural” abusers include Natural Cheetos, which are made with maltodextrin and disodium phosphate, and “natural advantage” Post Raisin Bran, which bathes its raisins in both sugar and corn syrup. The worst part is, you’re likely paying a premium price for common junk food.
MYTH #8: Egg yolks raise your cholesterol
Egg yolks contain dietary cholesterol; this much is true. But research has proven that dietary cholesterol has almost nothing to do with serum cholesterol, the stuff in your blood. Researchers reviewed more than 30 egg studies and found no link between egg consumption and heart disease, and another study found that eating eggs for breakfast could decrease your calorie intake for the remainder of the day. Check out my Audio cd and get the facts on cholesterol and how to best lower your risks.
MYTH #9: Eating junk food helps battle stress
You’ve been there: Stressed out and sprawled across your sofa with one arm elbow deep in a bag of cheese puffs. In the moment, it can be comforting, but a study in a recent study it was found that people who consumed the most highly processed foods were 58 percent more likely to be depressed than those who ate the least. Your move: Find a healthy stress snack. Peanut butter and Triscuits do the trick.
MYTH #10: Chocolate is bad for you
Cocoa is a plant-based food with flavonoids that increase blood flow and release feel-good endorphins. Plus, it contains a healthy kind of saturated fat called stearic acid, which research has shown can increase your good HDL cholesterol. But here’s the rub: When most people think of chocolate, their minds jump immediately to milk chocolate, which contains far more sugar than actual cocoa. Instead, look for dark chocolate, specifically those versions that tell you exactly how much cocoa they contain. A bar with 60% cocoa is good, but the more cocoa it contains, the greater the health effects.
MYTH #11: Granola is good for you
Oats are good for you, and the same goes for oatmeal. But granola takes those good-for-you hunks of flattened oat, blankets them in sugar, and bakes them in oil to give them crunch. The amount of fat and sugar added to each oat is at the discretion of food processors, but you can bet it’s going to far sweeter and fattier than a bowl of regular cereal. Example: A single cup of Quaker Natural Granola, Nuts & Raisins has 420 calories, 30 grams of sugar, and 10 grams of fat. Switch to a cup of Kix and you drop down about 90 calories, 2.5 grams of sugar, and 1 gram of fat.
MYTH #12: Bananas are the best source of potassium
Your body uses potassium to keep your nerves and muscles firing efficiently, and an adequate intake can blunt sodium’s effect on blood pressure. One 2009 study found that a 2:1 ratio of potassium to sodium could halve your risk of heart disease, and since the average American consumes about 3,400 milligrams of sodium each day, your goal should be 6,800 milligrams of daily potassium. You’re extremely unlikely to ever reach that mark and never with bananas alone. One medium banana has 422 milligrams and 105 calories. Here are the sources that earn you roughly the same amount of potassium in fewer calories:
* Potato, half a medium spud, 80 calories
* Apricots, 5 whole fruit, 80 calories
* Cantaloupe, 1 cup cubes, 55 calories
* Broccoli, 1 full stalk, 50 calories
* Sun-dried tomatoes, a quarter cup, 35 calories
MYTH #13: Oranges are the best source of vitamin C
Far more than a simple immune booster, vitamin C is an antioxidant that plays a host of important roles in your body. It strengthens skin by helping to build collagen, improves mood by increasing the flow of norepinephrine, and bolsters metabolic efficiency by helping transport fat cells into your body’s energy-burning mitochondria. But since your body can neither store nor create the wonder vitamin, you need to provide a constant supply. An orange is the most famous vitamin-C food, and although it’s a good source, it’s by no means the best. For 70 calories, one orange gives you about 70 micrograms of vitamin C. Here are five sources with just as much vitamin C and even fewer calories:
* Papaya, ¾ cup, 50 calories
* Brussel’s sprouts, 1 cup, 40 calories
* Strawberries, 7 large fruit, 40 calories
* Broccoli, ½ stalk, 25 calories
* Red Bell Pepper, ½ medium pepper, 20 calories
MYTH #14: Organic is always better
Often, but not in every case, organic produce is almost nutritionally identical to its conventional counterpart. The issue is pesticide exposure. Pesticides have been linked to an increased risk of obesity in some studies. But many conventionally grown fruits and vegetables are very low in pesticides. Take, for example, the conventional onion: It’s got the lowest pesticide load of 45 fruits and vegetables tested by the Environmental Working Group. Also in the safe-to-eat-conventional group are avocados, sweet corn, and pineapple. In general, fruits and vegetables with impermeable skins are safe to buy conventional, while produce like celery, peaches, apples, and blueberries are better purchased organic. The rise of organic products is one of many complex new developments in food.
MYTH #15: Meat is bad for you
Pork, beef, and lamb are among the world’s best sources of complete protein, and a study found that diets with 25 percent of calories from protein can help you lose twice as much weight as diets with 12 percent protein. Then there’s vitamin B12, which is prevalent only in animal-based foods. B12 is essential to your body’s ability to decode DNA and build red blood cells, and researchers found that adequate intakes protect against age-related brain shrinkage. Now, if you’re worried that meat will increase your risk for heart disease, don’t be. A Harvard review last year looked at 20 studies and found that meat’s link to heart disease exists only with processed meats like bacon, sausage, and deli cuts. Unprocessed meats, those that hadn’t been smoked, cured, or chemically preserved, presented absolutely zero risk.
Bonus Tip: You don’t need to make big changes to your diet to lose 10, 20, or even 30 pounds. You just need to make the right small tweaks. Change how you look and feel and get all the Tips and tricks from my books and Cd’s that will help you obtain your fitness goals and help you to become the best you can be.
I know you want to get in shape and look great. Whatever your fitness goal…to slim down…gain muscle…tone your arms or flatten your tummy…I’m here to help you accomplish your goals and to improve your fitness level. If you have enjoyed this article and the many other free features on my site, and would like some more comprehensive information such as fitness books and CD’s to aid you in achieving your health and fitness goals, please visit my ONLINE STOREwhere you will find innovative natural health and beauty products to help you become the BEST YOU CAN BE !