Debunking Common Food Myths And Misconceptions
It’s easy to believe a supposed fact about the food you eat. In most cases, you’ll find contradictions on why certain foods are good or bad for you. Food myths are common and can make you second-guess if eating your favourite meal is a good idea.
When you take time to do some research, you’ll notice that what you’ve considered facts, has been misconceptions that come from misunderstandings backed by inconclusive research. It’s essential to ensure you read labels and eat in moderation to maintain a balanced and healthy diet. Read on to debunk five common food myths and misconceptions.
Myth 1: Fresh Fruits and Vegetables are Healthier than Canned or Frozen Types
Most people are taught that fresh fruits and vegetables are healthier than their canned or frozen counterparts. Yet, research suggests that this isn’t the case. Not only are canned and frozen fruits and vegetables budget-friendly, but they can offer nutritious value.
Choosing canned or frozen fruits and vegetables isn’t a disservice to your health. In fact, some experts argue that food is most nutritious at harvest. Canned or frozen foods are kept in their harvest phase longer than fresh produce.
As a result, when fresh produce is left on shelves, it loses its nutritional value. On the other hand, canned or frozen foods maintain the same nutritional value from harvest. It’s necessary to check the labels and ensure you buy canned or frozen foods that are BPA-free to prevent health complications such as increased blood pressure and cardiovascular disease.
Myth 2: All Fat is Bad for You
Fat has been assumed to contribute to weight gain. In most cases, dietary experts have attributed fat to weight gain because most fats contains more calories per gram compared to carbohydrates or protein. However, not all fats are the same.
There are fats that are good, bad, and in-between. For instance, you should reconsider your intake of fried foods like French fries as they contain a high number of trans-fatty acids (trans fats) which are considered bad for your heart. On the other hand, foods high in monounsaturated fats like sunflower oil can help lower your cholesterol levels.
Specific types of fats assist with the absorption of certain vitamins. Additionally, they can provide essential nutrients required by your body. It’s crucial to understand which fats are good for you and to consume them in moderation to promote specific health functions.
Myth 3: Organic Produce Doesn’t Contain Pesticides
Organic farming has a lot of environmental benefits. Most importantly, organic produce can promote better health. However, there’s little to no evidence that supports the misbelief that organic produce is more nutritious compared to conventionally farmed produce.
Most people believe that organic produce is healthier because organic farms don’t use pesticides. Yet, this isn’t the case. Organic crops require pesticides and fungicides to prevent pests and fungi from destroying crops.
Natural pesticides aren’t free from chemicals. There are over 20 chemicals that are approved and used to treat organic crops. Additionally, organic pesticides don’t contain chemicals used in synthetic pesticides to kill most pests and fungi.
Myth 4: Avoid All Processed Foods
Did you know that the term “processed foods” doesn’t mean junk food? Food is considered processed when you change it from its natural state. This means when you wash, cut or cook food, it becomes processed food.
The common misconception is that all processed foods are bad for your health. Or that the term refers to ready-made and microwavable dishes. However, high-fibre breakfast cereals such as granola are also processed foods.
The one thing that affects the nutritional value of the processed foods you consume is the ingredients used. If you eat foods high in specific fats, refined sugars, and salt, you increase the risk of compromising your immune system. Food labels can help you make better choices with the types of processed foods you consume.
Myth 5: Avoid Carbs to Lose Weight
How many times have people told you that eating foods loaded with carbohydrates makes you gain weight? Research suggests that carbohydrate-containing foods don’t have a similar calorie density. As a result, not all carbohydrate-enriched foods are responsible for potential weight-gain.
The fact is the number of calories from a combination of fats, sugars, salt, and carbohydrates contribute to excessive weight gain. The main thing that happens when you cut down on carbs is the loss of water weight. When you consume food high in carbs, your body stores excess energy as glycogen molecules that have water attached to them.
When you reduce your carb intake, you end up using the stored energy. This leads to using up the glycogen molecules and results in the reduction of water weight. If you feel bloated mostly, it could mean that you have excess water weight that you should reduce through exercise and a balanced diet of healthy carbs, fats, and protein.
In summary, there are a lot of misconceptions about the food that you eat. It’s crucial to be mindful of what you eat and how it affects your health. However, you shouldn’t stay away from eating certain foods because someone told you that it’s bad for you.
You should consider doing research to understand how the foods you eat impacts your health. If you are concerned about health risks associated with the food you eat, making sure you have the right medical cover to suit your needs. Consider an Affinity Health plan to access a multitude of health and preventative benefits.