When we’re trying to get healthier or lose weight, we tend to subscribe to one or two food myths. You know the ones: those foods that promise to help you lose a stone in a week, or reverse the effects of decades of bad eating. The truth is, they are mostly just myths. There are hundreds of myths about the effects of the foods we eat. We’ve picked out a few of our favourites.
Celery has negative calories
A popularly held belief, but a myth all the same. You do not burn off more calories than you consume when you’re eating celery! Celery is often referred to as a ‘no-calorie food’. In fact, there is no such thing. In actual fact, a stick of celery contains about six calories; chewing and digesting it will only take half a calorie.
Raw carrots are better for you
Although you might have heard this one - and believed it - the opposite is actually true. Cooked carrots are more beneficial because the cooking process helps to release the nutrients. But cooked or raw, they’re highly nutritious.
Carbs are bad for you
This is a popular debate in the weight-loss world. Many people believe that you should cut out carbs in order to lose weight. In reality, starchy carbohydrate foods are rich in fibre which is vital as part of a healthy diet.
Never cook chicken with the skin on
We all know that chicken skin is high in fat, with over 80% of the calories made up of fat alone. But many people believe that you should remove the skin before cooking. It’s thought that the fats from the skin soak into the chicken itself. That’s simply not true. Cooking chicken with the skin on helps to keep the meat moist. You should then remove the skin before eating.
Lemons and their fat-burning qualities
Lemons are often hailed as a miracle food. When you’re trying to lose weight, you’re likely to cling to anything you think will speed things up. But it’s a complete myth that eating lemons or squeezing their juice into your water will speed up weight loss.
There are obvious health benefits to eating more fruit though and lemons have been claimed to contribute to many things over the years.
Eating lemons or drinking their juice is good for you, but that alone won’t help you to lose weight.
Nuts are bad for you
It’s true that nuts covered in salt are really bad for you. But natural nuts are incredibly healthy and are a great source of protein. Nuts are high in natural fats as well though, so you should only ever eat a handful at a time. Of a 28g serving of almonds, for example, 14grams is fat, so half of the nut is natural fat.
When you’re trying to lose weight or maintain a healthy lifestyle, it’s easy to get sucked in by food myths. Stick to a healthy diet and increase your exercise levels and you’ll soon start to see results, without needing magic foodstuffs.
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