Here are four diet myths you need to stop believing. Stat!
- Negative calorie foods. You know the list of foods that supposedly burn more calories to eat than you get from the food? Sorry folks, those foods don't exist. Though there may be some truth to the idea that for the calories consumed, the body expends quite a bit of energy to digest them, most people end up compensating for those calories later. To make matters worse, lists like this, often give the allure of being able to eat as much we want. This quickly backfires because if calories are unneeded, the body will store them as fat. (Yes, even calories from fruits and vegetables).
- Fruit has too much sugar. If there is one thing dietitians roll their eyes at, it's martyred healthy food. Yes, fruit contains sugar, but compared to what? Sugar in fruit is natural, which means it comes complete with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and fiber. This is much different than desserts or other foods that have sugar added to it. The important thing here is to eat whole fruit (not juice or fruit-products) and to have a balance between fruit and vegetables each day. Grapes, bananas and other fruits are NOT problem foods.
- Weight-lifting will bulk me up. Ladies, read this and then tell at least five other women: Weight-lifting will not bulk you up. I repeat, weight-lifting will not bulk you up. On the contrary, weight lifting will increase your metabolic rate which in turn will boost your calorie burning power throughout the day and help you to lose fat. It can also tighten loose skin, improve balance and slow bone loss. Who doesn't want all of those? Now, the trick is to lift heavy weights. Those dinky two and three-pounders may look cute, but they aren't doing you any favors. The heavier the weights the better - as long as you practice good form and technique!
- Diet beverage free-for-all. Step away from the diet beverages. We're talking soda, flavored water enhancers, diet flavored waters, juices and any other product that has artificial sweetener in it. These beverages are not an acceptable substitute for drinking water. Let me rephrase: while an occasional soda or flavored water enhancer is certainly fine, they should not replace plain water and should not be a daily staple in your diet. Your body relies on water to digest food and absorb nutrients. Whether you like the taste of water or not - your body needs it.
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