Most of what we’ve been taught about nutrition is catastrophically wrong. Our diets are now overloaded with highly processed packaged foods filled with chemicals we can’t pronounce, refined carbohydrates and sugars, unhealthy animals that are pumped full of antibiotics, and sugar-sweetened snacks and drinks.
It comes as no surprise that developed countries are plagued by obesity.
The sad fact is we’re all victims of the loathsome deceptions of the food industry.
You have a choice though: continue to be the victim or arm yourself with the knowledge to make better choices for your health.
Clearly you’ve chosen the latter.
So pat yourself on the back and sit back and relax as we explore five of the biggest lies about so-called healthy food.
Lie #1: Low fat products are healthy.
It’s easy to get confused when you see health claims plastered all over low fat versions of your favorite foods at the grocery store. But here’s the truth: fat is good for you (the right types, of course). Your body needs it. And worst of all, the fat in low-fat foods is often replaced with more sugar, salt and highly-processed ingredients, which can do more harm than good.
One study found that a high fat, low carb diet can actually lower your cholesterol and blood glucose levels. Another showed that low fat diets aren’t any better for weight loss than high fat, lower carb diets.
And this study published in the Journal of Marketing Research showed that people who saw a “low fat” label on a food package ate up to 50 percent more than those who didn’t!
For years we’ve been told to avoid saturated fat too, but a research analysis of nearly 350,000 patients found no link between saturated fat and heart disease.
The evidence is clear: forget low fat. Eat more foods with healthy fats, like fatty fish, olive oil, nuts, and avocados.
Lie #2: Eggs raise your cholesterol.
Let’s stop hating on eggs and put this healthy eating lie to rest once and for all. Because they’re one of the most nutrient-dense foods on the planet.
Mainstream nutrition authorities have you believing that eggs raise your cholesterol and your risk of heart disease. Not true. Dietary cholesterol has very weak associations with blood cholesterol. Translation: eating foods high in cholesterol doesn’t raise cholesterol for most people.
Research shows eating eggs does NOT increase your risk of heart disease and stroke. And eating eggs for breakfast may actually help you lose weight faster. That’s enough to sway me to keep eating my eggs every morning.
Lie #3: Vegetable oils are healthier than butter.
This is a source of major confusion and for good reason. Health “authorities” like Harvard are still telling people to eat more highly processed vegetable oils. Let’s set the record straight.
Some vegetable oils (olive oil, for example) are good for you. Others, like the soybean oil and corn oil found in the majority of processed foods, are high in inflammation-causing Omega-6 fatty acids.
And the scariest part is, two well designed studies show that eating foods high in Omega-6 fatty acids may actually increase your risk of heart disease. Check ’em out here and here.
Stick with all-natural, healthy sources of fat like olive oil, coconut oil and butter from grass fed cows.
Lie #4: Gluten-free products will help you lose weight.
Let’s end the myth about gluten free eating: it’s not all it’s cracked up to be and it’s completely unnecessary for the majority of folks. If you have celiac disease or a sensitivity to gluten then eating gluten free products is essential. For everyone else, it’s not.
Researchers in this study said doctors “should exercise caution when diagnosing gluten sensitivity.” And another study found that eating a gluten free diet has absolutely no implications on weight loss.
Unless your doctor gives you a specific reason to do so, don’t waste your money on gluten free products.
Lie #5: Products that say “healthy” on the package are good for you.
We are inundated with health claims on food packages. From sugar-filled cereals that are a “good source of whole grains” to “heart healthy” pseudo-butter products that have no trace of real butter, food companies exploit the FDA’s lax guidelines on food claims.
Here’s a good tip: don’t pay attention to the front of food packages. Turn it around and look at the back to see the only objective information on the package: the list of ingredients and nutrition facts. Or better yet, buy real foods that don’t come in a package.
Knowledge is power, folks. Learn to recognize these 5 healthy food lies when you see them and you’ll set yourself up for a lifetime of better health.