Eating healthy has become more accessible today purely based on the wealth of evidence-based knowledge and research we now have at our fingertips. We now also have tools and technology that helps us manage our diets and nutrition even on an automated level.
With all this science, information and technology at our disposal, you would think that what we know, understand and apply about nutrition is pretty solid, effective and factual yeah?
Well, unfortunately, that’s not the case. Because with a high volume of information, we also see an influx of incorrect misinformation.
Facts about nutrition that are simply not facts.
This prevalence of incorrect or inaccurate information has actually given substance to many prevailing nutrition myths that still hold today.
But what causes these myths to really take hold.
What Are The Reasons Behind Many Diet Myths?
Nutrition myths take hold for many different reasons.
One reason we can pinpoint is the issue of traditional dogma. Old beliefs that have transcended generations, coming from a time when nutritional science hadn’t developed to offer an accurate lense into dietary facts.
Another reason could be based on confirmation bias. A lot of people seek ways to confirm or justify their position on an issue by cherry picking information that may even just vaguely line up with their values.
This happens with nutrition, where some people look for ways to support the relevance of their nutritional habits through facts, random and far-fetched as they may be, that line up with their beliefs.
Those types of myths usually arise from people who are aiming to deny the ineffectiveness or even destructiveness of their current nutritional habits.
Nutrition myths can also, unfortunately, arise from purposeful disinformation. Either aimed at encouraging the use of a new, hot drug or supplement or promoting some sort of other agenda.
Whatever the reason is, this article is here to help you thwart the misleading grip of dietary myths, so you can stay on track with authentically healthy nutrition.
4 Diet and Nutrition Myths That Are Still Common Beliefs
During the late 60s and early 70s, the world began to realize it had a new and unique health problem.
And no, we’re not talking about video game addiction, that one was still a decade in the works.
We mean obesity.
Never before in recorded history had human beings being overweight been classified as a pandemic.
sure, throughout the history of man, especially in the neolithic era, you would get some fatties here and there, but we now live in a world where being unhealthily overweight is a common occurrence.
The first thing to blame once this became a recognized issue was the presence of fat in the diet.
On face value, it sounded like a sound conclusion, but nutritional science has shown that certain types of fats, especially monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats can have the opposite effect.
Dietary protocols such as keto and Atkins have proven that increasing fat in the diet can actually aid in weight loss.
This myth has evolved from simply stating that vegans can’t get enough protein from veggies to vegans cant get complete proteins from veggies.
Complete proteins, as you might know, are proteins that contain all 9 essential amino acids.
Single source plants common on most people’s vegetable lists typically don’t contain all 9 aminos in one go.
That’s not to say you can’t get all 9 essential amino acids with a varied plant-based diet. By mixing and matching, you can totally get all your essential amino acids from a completely plant-based diet.
Another interesting thing is that there are in fact some single plant sources that contain all 9 essential amino acids.
These include soy, quinoa, and spirulina to name a few. Spirulina actually has the highest natural protein density of any food known to man. It is only rivaled by artificial protein foods such as whey protein.
Sticking with protein is another commonly held myth in the bodybuilding/fitness community.
It’s that you need to gulp down a bunch of protein straight after a workout in order to maximize and protect your gains.
Evidence now suggests that the effects of doing this on the rate of muscle protein synthesis are insignificant at best.
Brown bread, brown rice, brown sugar, brown, brown, brown!
We’ve all been told that the brown version of carbs is healthier than the white version.
The reality is being brown doesn’t make a carb healthy. Being whole is what makes a carb healthy.
Wholegrain or unrefined carbs are often brown because all components have been preserved and mixed in for consumption. These parts, such as the husks of grains, are often an earthy tone that appears as brown when ground or processed.
However, there are some carbs that are just brown, whether or not they are whole grain. Brown rice, for example, is just rice that’s brown in color. Its brownness is not indicative of any health benefits.
Brown bread is another big myth. That’s because brown bread is often simply bread that’s been colored brown.
Instead, opt for unrefined whole grain foods. Focus on content rather than color.
There are plenty more myths in the sea of confusion, but these are the ones that stuck out to us the most.
Be wary of where you get your nutritional advice. Consult a qualified nutritionist or dietician, and if you’re striking out with your own research, only look at official peer-reviewed sources such as scientific journals or case studies.
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