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Untrue diet myths in the mainstream media

Eggs have been shown to be a healthy part of your diet
Eggs have been shown to be a healthy part of your diet
Photo by: cyclonebill via Flickr

Many healthy eating and nutrition specialists have been taking to television and the print media, continuing to spread decades old myths about diet. They make these claims even though much of their information has been proven false in recent years. Here are just 3 examples of these myths.

Eggs are unhealthy

An often heard claim over the years is that eggs are a health risk, and you should limit the amount of eggs in your diet. They push a healthier alternative of only using the egg white, and throwing the yolk away. The problem is, this claim is not true.

Studies have shown that eating cholesterol has very little or effect on the amount of cholesterol in the blood stream. Add to that the fact that egg yolks contain many nutrients that actually fight heart disease. When you throw away the egg yolk you are actually throwing away the healthiest part of the egg.

Egg yolks are very nutrient dense. That means there are a high number of nutrients compared to the amount of calories. That means you can reach your nutrient needs without consuming too many calories.

Eating fat makes you fat

There is an entire industry that has sprung up around this myth. Eating fat causes weight gain. Eating fat leads to increases in heart disease. However, none of that has been proven to be true. Studies have debunked this myth, but it persists in the media.

Repeated studies have shown that total calories are a much bigger factor in weight gain. Although fat does have a higher calorie count than protein or carbs, it still comes down to how much you eat. Many people complain that low-fat foods aren't as filling, so people that restrict the fat in their diet end up eating more of other things.

As far as fat contributing to heart disease, that is only true of trans-fats. Saturated fats have been shown to have no effect on heart disease.

Grazing is better

One of the theories that has persisted is that eating many smaller meals is better than 3 larger meals. The theory is that when you eat many smaller meals it keeps your metabolism at a higher rate, which will result in you burning more calories. While this may sound good in theory, there is no evidence to show that it is actually true.

There have been numerous studies comparing grazing to the traditional 3 meals a day diet, and it has been shown that when eating the same amount of food, there was no difference in the weight of the people studied. One study of obese men found that the men did not feel as foull when eating smaller meals, and that there was more of a tendency to over eat.

Several studies have shown evidence that grazing actually has greater health risks. Your body needs time to clean the waste products out of the cells. This process occurs during times of fasting. When the waste is not cleared from the cells on a regular basis there is an increase in disease. These studies also showed that there was a significan increase in the occurrence of colon cancer in people that grazed.

If you are really interested in your health, you need to do your own research about healthy eating. Do not rely solely on what you see on television, or read in a magazine. Look for current studies, and learn what researchers are finding out about what makes a healthy diet.

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