fresh grapefruit with tahini, honey and blueberries

Getting drowned in the rabbit hole of Google, trying to answer simple nutrition questions? Perfect. This post is written for you!

Here are five common nutrition myths debunked by myself, a Registered Dietitian.

Calories in versus calories out.

While we do know that burning more calories than you take in is the proper equation for weight loss, it is just not as simple as that. This tactic doesn’t factor in who you are as a person, such as any health conditions you have. We also know that all calories are not created equal. If you ate the same amount of calories from highly processed foods compared to wholesome foods, the results wouldn’t necessarily be the same. Your body reacts, utilizes and stores foods differently than others. If weight loss is your goal, I want you to feel energized, confident, and strong through the process. This may be the change with the types of foods that you are putting into your body. All in all, nutrient-dense foods are just as important in this situation.

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day.

This may vary from person to person. We do know that it is important to fuel your body for the day within an hour of waking. So yes, I still want you to eat breakfast every day. But I also want you to eat lunch, dinner and some snacks in between there as well. Your body often needs most of it’s energy during the day – the time where you are doing most of your activity and using most of your brain. Having something a bit more substantial, with a carbohydrate component to it also, for lunch can be an important aspect. Later in the evening when we aren’t using up as much energy, our body doesn’t necessarily need as big of portion. It’s important to give your body some time to digest before heading to bed as well.

You have to eat low or no carb to lose weight.

I get this questions or thought process all of the time.
Carbohydrates are our brain’s favorite source of energy. We need each specific food group for a reason and to obtain proper nutrition. When we restrict or eliminate carbohydrates, our body goes into a starvation mode and we can create another layer of a poor relationship with food.
There’s usually a reason this eating style does not stick for a long-time. An unsustainable way of living will make it challenging to create that lasting lifestyle change that we all want.
We do know that overconsumption of simple carbohydrates, like white bread, white rice, and bakery products, can interfere with health conditions and goals. Choosing the more fibrous sources with proper portion size is the key to a realistic nutrition plan.

Fat makes you gain weight.

Fat is an essential nutrient for our health. It supports our hair, skin, nail and brain health as well as protects our organs. Fat is the highest calorie macronutrient, but it should not be feared. Fat takes much longer to digest, so it is essential in keeping us full from our meals. If we are not satisfied with our meals, it may have to do with not having a fat source with it. Fat is important to regulate our blood sugar and for our hormones as well. Portion size is helpful to learn along with proper sources to choose most often.

You should “detox” regularly.

First and foremost, we have our kidneys and our liver for a reason, constantly detoxing our system. Detox diets are often not necessarily, and sometimes unsafe. Many times this trend is used to “kick start” weight loss, yet this is not a positive track to begin with. Food should be looked at as fuel, and we still need that fuel no matter our health goals. Whether you feel good on or after this detox, it’s important to note if it has helped you develop the strategies and behaviors needed to create a lifestyle change for yourself.

Let me know in the comments below what other nutrition myths you’ve heard or need debunked!

Stay Well. Xo

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