We worry a tad too much about what we eat. Not that we shouldn’t but after a point we need to stop and think whether our best friend’s neighbor’s aunt’s dietician’s diet tip actually makes sense.
There is a diet fad born every few minutes with the number of baseless diet tips hovering around. From ‘don’t eat anything post 8 pm’ to ‘grease will make you fat’, we blindly follow whatever new diet tip sounds ‘right’ to us and feel a pang of guilt every time we even lay our eyes on a plate of French fries or a blotch of melted cheese. It is high time we wake up and smell the coffee – and it’s ok if once in a while it has sugar and not Splenda – and scrap these silly diet fables.
Fat is Fattening
Whoever said that the intake of fat is the reason for your unhealthy lifestyle has been deceiving you. To some extent, it is but the facts are a little more intricate than that. There are good fats and bad fats. Saturated Fats and trans fats like tropical oils, fried food, fatty cuts of meat are considered bad for the heart – bad. Monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats like nuts, vegetable oils, salmon, tofu are the ones which are beneficial and should be taken in moderation – good.
Carbs are Bad
Whichever new diet expert you may have consulted, they all discourage the consumption of carbohydrates. The belief stems out of the fact that carbohydrates cause weight gain. It is said that a high carb diet ‘may’ result in increased consumption of saturated fats, a leading cause of lifestyle problems. But on the other hands, a low carb diet restricts a balanced healthy food diet and while they may help you reduce weight in the short term, there can be adverse long-term consequences. So, be sensible and balance out your carbs with proteins that are low in saturated fats.
Supplements like fructose water, bitter orange, green tea, and apple cider vinegar are often the miracle ingredient that diet fanatics include in their diets. Unfortunately, there are no such miracle ingredients. No one single food or group of foods eaten together or at a certain time of day has any impact on weight loss. You don’t need expensive or additional diet supplements. If you want to take a once daily multivitamin for nutritional assurance, that is fine, but otherwise, it is recommend you get your nutrients from food.
Detox is Dieting
Many fad diet enthusiasts push for various detox diet plans that make promises of “miraculous” weight loss. Science rubbishes quite a few of them by pointing out that our kidneys, liver, skin and lungs are carrying out the detox mechanisms for a healthy body already. Truth is, after rigorous seven day detox plan, you might just lose weight, but that would not be because your body has been flushed of all toxins, but because you starved yourself for a whole week. Damn you cold presses!
The Raw Regime
Based on beliefs that cooking destroys the nutrients and enzymes in our food, the raw food diet has got a whole lot of people swearing by it. Some of the justifications are, “no other animal cooks food,” and “raw food helps detoxify the body”. While it may be true that cooking does alter the nutritional value for some food products, it does not hold true for all of them. Often raw food consumption leads to negative calories. This may result in weight loss but can have contrary health consequences. No other animal may cook their food, but no other animal can do squats either!
Low Calorie Diets
Unless you want to drop unconscious and end up with tubes pumping in fluids into your body, it is recommended that you steer clear of low calorie diets, crash dieting or rigorous fasting. Fasting has been a cultural and religious tradition for centuries, and is fine for a day or so, but fasting for weight loss is counterproductive as after a point it empties your system of nutrients and energy.
The Cheat Day
We hate to burst your ‘cheat day’ bubble, but someone had to! The thought of having a cheat day in your diet is extremely exciting and keeps you determined to be faithful to your diet. But as much as we plan and apply restrictions on our cheat days, we do tend to indulge in some guilty pleasures that we regret later. The wiser step is to keep a ‘cheat meal’ instead of letting your taste buds take over for an entire day.