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Nutrition mythbusters for better fitness and health

Friday, May 9, 2008

Myth #1: "Eating carbohydrates causes weight gain."

Fiction. Excess calories and inactivity cause weight gain – not carbohydrates. Bread and pasta have gotten a bad rap in many fad diets, but calories from carbohydrates are no more fattening than calories from other sources. The truth is carbohydrates provide our bodies with quick energy and are a vital part of a healthy diet. If your goal is losing weight, don't avoid carbohydrates. Instead, select 100 percent whole grain bread, pasta, and crackers for added fiber and health heart benefits.

Myth #2: "Dairy foods are fattening."

Fiction. An eight ounce glass of skim milk has only 80 calories and zero grams of fat. That’s less than a soda or a juice drink. Low fat and fat free milk, yogurt and cheese are just as nutritious as dairy foods made from whole milk, just lower in fat and calories. In fact, dairy is doctor recommended. Children and adults need three servings each day because of its unique combination of calcium and eight other vitamins and minerals. Additionally, research shows that dairy foods, as part of a healthy diet, may help reduce the risk of osteoporosis, high blood pressure, diabetes and obesity.

Myth #3: “Fresh fruits and vegetables are healthier than frozen or canned.”

Both. It is a fact that just-picked vegetables and fruits have more vitamins and minerals than frozen or canned if you eat them right away. However, it's fiction that frozen and canned vegetables are not healthy choices. Since lycopene, which is essential for eye health, is better absorbed in the body after it is processed, canned tomatoes, corn and carrots are sometimes better choices.

Myth #4: "Taking vitamin and mineral supplements is just as effective as maintaining a healthy diet."

Fiction. You can’t beat the vitamins and minerals that come from foods. Nature's disease fighting foods such as citrus fruits, dark green leafy vegetables, whole grain breads and low-fat milk, cheese and yogurt are packed with vitamins and minerals that can't be matched with a synthetic pill.

When it comes to nutrition myths, it’s important to remember that nutrient-rich foods, such as brightly colored fruits and vegetables, low fat milk, cheese and yogurt, lean meats and whole grains are always the best choice for a healthy diet. Forget food folklore and remember that almost any food can fit into a healthy diet as long as it’s portioned properly.

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Posted by Tuan Rumah at 8:27 AM  
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