Facts you think you know about food…

…are actually wrong! Have you ever wondered why you’re doing everything by the book when it comes to healthy eating and still not losing weight? It could be that you’ve fallen foul of some of these common food myths.

Reduce calories to lose weight
The first thing many people do to lose weight is to start counting calories and trying to burn off the ones they do consume. But losing weight is a little more complicated than that. Some foods, such as avocado and salmon, are much higher in calories and fat than other vegetables and fish, but because they are rich in nutrients and Omega 3 fatty acids, they will actually assist weight loss by helping you to feel fuller. Rather than counting calories, it’s more important to eat nutritious, unprocessed foods.

Cut out sweets, cut out sugar
If you’re dieting the first thing you often ditch are sweets, which is not a bad thing. However, sugar is found in so many other foods such as bread, yogurt and many sauces. Sugar is the most refined form of carbohydrate so all these hidden sugars will soon have you piling on the kilos.

Eat as much fruit as you want
Fruit is high in natural sugars and alone shouldn’t make up your quota of five serves of fruit and vegetables a day. You need to have a good mix of fruit and vegetables in your diet to remain healthy and lose weight. Sugars in food can also lead to bloating and abdominal pain.

Skimmed milk is healthier
Vitamins A, D, E and K, which are commonly found in milk, are fat-soluble and are absorbed better when taken with a little fat. Also, full fat milk actually contains very little fat and is a much better dairy option than cheese or cream.

Low fat salad dressing is good for you
While on most occasions the lower fat version of food is usually the healthiest options, sometimes food needs a little fat to help digestion. This is the case with salad as a little fat helps your body absorb the nutrients in vegetables, as they are fat-soluble. The more nutrients you have in your body, the less likely you are to have sugar cravings.

Choose margarine over butter
Margarine has been the spread of choice in many households over the last 20 years, but it’s actually a highly processed food, which contains hydrogenated fats which the body finds difficult to break down. Butter contains a natural fatty acid called CLA which, when taken in small doses, can actually help reduce your risk of heart disease.

Written by Debbie McTaggart

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