There is a lot of misinformation about nutrition in the world and most of it is produced by the mainstream media. These are publications and organizations that should know better but unfortunately there is no money in common sense.

In this article we look to completely shatter some of the biggest lies, myths and misconceptions of the mainstream media that played havoc with our health, resulting in the highest obesity levels ever recorded.

Here are just a few myths to sink our teeth into.

1. You Should Start Your Day With A Glass Of Orange Juice

happy girl drinking orange juice in the morning

It’s a tradition among the breakfast table with many families across the world. Start the day with a glass of orange juice.

Unfortunately this is actually one the worst ways of starting the day. Orange juice is high in sugar which causes a huge release of insulin in the body. More insulin produced means more fat cells will be produced in the long term.[1] Orange juice also contains fructose.

Fructose preferentially fills the liver with glycogen limiting liver function in the process due to carbohydrate overfeeding. This happens directly because the liver is the only tissue that can handle fructose, but it also happens indirectly because eating fructose increases the amount of glucose the liver absorbs.[2] Fructose up-regulates the glucose transport molecules in the liver, making the liver “hungry” for sugar.

Conclusion: Avoid drinks like orange juice in the morning. Avoid any drink that contains fructose as fructose leads to carbohydrate cravings. This is quite dangerous and obviously can lead to over indulging on carbohydrates.

2. It’s About Calorie Control

Calories are all alike, whether they come from beef or bourbon, from sugar or starch, or from cheese and crackers. Too many calories are just too many calories.

– Fred Stare,
Founder and former chair of the Harvard University of Nutrition Department

This is one of the most absurd statements made in the area of nutrition and it’s made by a Harvard professor.

diet calories control, an apple wrapped with measuring tape

200 calories from a mars bar and 200 calories from a beef steak will not cause the same weight gain. It all depends on the source of the calories not the calories themselves.

Carbohydrates are what cause weight gain.[3] Too many carbohydrates cause insulin levels to rise in the body therefore producing more fat cells.

If you put two identical males on two different diets, one on a 3000 calorie diet made up of carbs and the other on a 3000 calorie of protein, they will not end up the same. The guy on the carb diet will gain more weight.

Calorie control also requires too much willpower and self-control which inevitably causes a person to drop their new low calorie diet.

Conclusion: All calories are not created equal. It all depends on the source of the calories. If you are trying to lose weight, aim for low carbohydrate with large amounts of protein.

3. Whole Wheat Is Good For You

whole wheat

Wheat used to be healthy but it has gone through so many genetic changes since the 1950’s that it is no longer the case. Wheat is no longer healthy and whole wheat might actually be worse despite being touted as the healthier choice.

Chronicled in William Davies brilliant and extremely well-researched book “Wheat Belly”, Davies finds a few problems with wheat.

Wheat has been linked to increasing blood sugar more than table sugar. This means that your body produces more insulin i.e. the fat-producing hormone.

Whole Wheat has a GI (Glycemic Index) score of 72 while table sugar has a score of 59.  When the consumption of bread is measured on the GI scale, it actually raises your blood sugar so if you are trying to create a eating plan to combat being overweight, it would make more sense to remove wheat completely from your diet.[4] [5]

In the book “Wheat belly”, Dr. William Davies claimed that some of his patients who removed wheat from their diets had came back with a blood sugar score dropped from the diabetic range (126 mg/dl or greater) to normal. “Some patients had even lost twenty, thirty or even forty pounds”.

Conclusion: If you are looking to lose weight the healthy way, removing wheat would be a step in the right direction as it is not as healthy as it is marketed as being.

4. Fat Makes You Fat

measuring body fats and obesity

It seems to go against intrinsic sense and logic but we cannot keep up the lie any longer. Fat does not make you fat. Yet fat gets a bad reputation for being the cause of our modern obesity epidemic.

This has led us to to a whole range of “low-fat” or “fat-free” products that are actually worse for you because “low-fat” or “fat-free” is usually code for “packed with loads of preservatives and sugar”.

In 2010, the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition[6] found that there was no association between saturated fat and heart disease. This looked at over 300 people and 21 previous studies.

Eating saturated fat raises HDL cholesterol(the one we want) and lowers LDL cholesterol(the one we don’t). There is no reason to fear these foods.

It is largely believed that this myth came about because in the 1950’s there was a study published comparing seven different countries fat intake. It was concluded that Americans were consuming more fat and that is why Americans were fat. Known as the Seven Countries Study, Ancel Keys, the author, concluded that saturated fats like the ones found in milk and meat were not as beneficial and had the adverse effects of the fat found in vegetable oils. This theory was misunderstood to mean “all saturated fats are bad for you”. This ironically led to a massive growth in obesity since the 1950’s when there was a war on fat in America.

Conclusion: Fat does not make you fat and fat-free does not mean it’s healthy. It usually means the opposite as “fat-free” products tend to loaded with sugar.

5. Grains Should Make Up a Large Portion of Your Diet

full grain food items

According to the U.S Department of Agriculture, grains are at the bottom of the infamous food pyramid which means they should be consumed in more quantities than meat or fish or fruit and vegetables.

Grains are inferior in terms of nutrition when compared to vegetables.[7] [8] [9] Many grains even contain phytic acid which binds essential minerals in the intestine and presents them from being absorbed. As already discussed, wheat is the most common grain in the western diet and it causes many health problems but also raises your blood sugar more than even a Snickers bar.

Another problem with grains, is that some grains carry gluten which is starting to prove that it’s extremely harmful to a large portion of the population.[10] Some grains have even been linked to the cause such illnesses as auto-immune disease and acid reflux.

Conclusion: Grains do not have as many nutrients as vegetables and some grains such as wheat actually lead to more health problems than what is widely known.

6. Too Much Protein Will Cause Adverse Long-term Health

portein food sources

Eating at least 30 grams of protein for breakfast can actually promote weight loss but for some reason, high protein diets have been frowned upon.

Myths such kidney disease and osteoporosis have been associated with a high protein diet even though studies have proved otherwise.  The main causes of kidney problems are diabetes and high blood pressure which are caused by excessive carbohydrate consumption.

Conclusion: Protein has not been found to significantly cause kidney disease or osteoporosis.[11][12] In fact, protein and fat can actually decrease hunger in the body because they raise the satiety hormones in the body telling the brain that you are full.

7. Carbohydrates Should Make Up the Majority of Your Meal

Carbohydrates enriched food items

Low-fat diets tend to be the most popular despite the disastrous results that follow after a low fat/ high carbohydrate diet. The experts would have you believe that carbohydrates should make up the majority of your diet but fail to mention that too many carbohydrates are the cause of fat in the first place.

People who are already obese or are simply not blessed with a naturally fast metabolism should avoid low-fat/high-carbohydrate diets. These cause a whole host of different health issues including autoimmune disease and of course fat gain.

A high carbohydrate diet will add inches to your belly not take inches away.[13]

Conclusion: Too many carbohydrates are the cause of weight gain and do nothing to promote a healthy weight. Stick to a diet that has lots of vegetables, protein and high in essential fats.

8. Vegetable Oil Is Healthy

sunflower oil

Not all fats are created equal because some fats can actually cause health problems. These are fats that come from vegetable oil and upset our Omega-3s and Omega-6s balance. If there is too much Omega-6 in comparison to Omega-3 than health problems can occur.

The excess Omega-6 fatty acids actually come from vegetable oil, industrial seeds and soybeans. Research indicates that excess Omega-6 fatty acids can actually lead to an increase in heart disease.[14]

Conclusion: Try and get plenty of Omega-3 into your body. This can be obtained in the form of supplements and grass fed meat. Fish, particularly salmon, is an excellent source. The problems arise when there is a skewed ratio between Omega-6 and Omega-3.

9. Low Carb Diets Cause Long-term Health Problems

Low-carb diets might actually be the cure to many modern problems compared to low-fat diets. Even though mainstream media like to bash low-carb diets, many studies have shown that low-carb diets

low carb diet
  • Reduce body fat[15] [16]

  • Lower blood pressure

  • Lower blood sugar levels

  • Lower triglycerides

Low carb diet are actually easier to stick too compared to calorie controlled diets or low fat diets. Low carb diets tend to be high in protein and good fats which release ghrelin in the body. Ghrelin is the natural satiety hormone. So fat + protein is where it’s at if you want to reduce hunger and feel full.

Conclusion: On a low carb diet, the human body actually receives more nutrients when compared to the low-fat diets and calorie restriction diets.

9. The Egg Yolk is Unhealthy

Egg yolk

Eggs are probably the best and cheapest source of protein but for some reason there is still a misconception that the egg yolk is unhealthy and causes cholesterol.

This bizarre mis-information leads people to taking out the best part of the egg, the yolk, with a spoon before they cook them. The egg yolk is the most nutritious part of the egg.

The egg yolk contains some of the most nutrient dense, antioxidant-rich, vitamin and mineral portion of the egg. The yolk contains B-vitamins, trace minerals, vitamin A, choline, folate and other amazing nutrients. So many nutrients are contained in the egg yolk that it is just not possible to list them all here.

Egg yolks that come from free-range chickens have a healthy supply of omega-3 fatty acids, the soluble vitamins such as A, E and K and all the essential fatty acids. The egg whites are pure protein but when you scoop out the egg yolk, you are missing out on a world of nutrition.

Egg yolks have been unfairly associated with high cholesterol but eating the whole egg will not give you high cholesterol.[17] [18] In fact, studies suggest eating eggs raises your HDL cholesterol(the good kind) more than LDL cholesterol improving your bodies natural chemistry.

Personally speaking, I have had 3 eggs for breakfast for years and I have never had the infamous pot belly.

Conclusion: Eggs do not cause high cholesterol[19] and you are wasting the opportunity to get great nutrition by throwing out the egg yolk and leaving the egg white.

10. Low Fat Foods Are A Healthier Option

Girl eating salad

Eating fat does not make you fat. As briefly discussed in No. 4, I wanted to go back to it again because it is just a really important point.

Any foods that are labeled low-fat or “0% fat” are ironically going to make you fat. Usually, they cram these “0%” fat foods with extra sugar and preservatives to make it more tasty and delicious.

Sugar is the one to avoid if you are looking to gain weight and definitely avoid most preservatives because some of manmade substance cause water retention, making you look bloated and heavy.

Conclusion: Although low-fat foods sound attractive, they might actually be worse for you than you think. They use the low fat tag to make you think it is healthy when it’s actually not.[20] [21] [22]

11. Sugar Is Needed For Energy

Sugar cubes with spoon

Sugar in itself does not contain any real nutrients. In a lot of ways it is pure carbohydrate. Your body naturally converts a lot of food into simple sugar for energy but the white sugar(found in soda) that people consume can actually be more dangerous.

Manufactured sugar affects the metabolism profoundly in a number of ways because of the fructose content. Fructose can only be metabolized by the liver and it is turned into fat which is transferred to the blood stream as VLDL particles. This leads to a higher cholesterol level.

It also plays havoc with your leptin hormone which regulates appetite therefore leading to abnormal cravings.[23] Sugar causes a mini “high” followed by a crash which then leaves the victim searching for more sugar for that high. This vicious cycle causes more insulin to be produced which causes fat cells to increase. This cycle is the perfect path to Type 2 diabetes.[24]

Conclusion: Sugar is the one of the most dangerous white powders sold in the world. It plays havoc with your mood, energy levels and your metabolism. Reducing sugar is the best step you can take to good health.

12. Sodium is The Silent Killer and Main Cause of Heart Disease

holding a healthy heart in the hands

Sodium is an essential nutrient that the body needs to carry out standard body functions. For a long, time sodium was accused of being a silent killer and a major contribution to heart disease.

In the short term, sodium is found to mildly elevate blood pressure but no studies support the idea that reducing sodium intake helps to reduce the chance of heart attacks.

Sodium restriction has even been found to raise cholesterol and triglycerides levels. Unless advised by your Doctor then there should be no reason to avoid sodium like the plague.

Conclusion: Sodium restriction has been tested and retested but no studies have found any evidence that it actually leads to better outcomes.[25],[26]

William Kennedy

About William Kennedy

Tagline I was the fastest sperm to the egg and I have been on a winning streak ever since. Introduction I love lots of things like lifehacks, android, soccer and strangely I like to learn as well. Bragging rights Every sales job I have worked at I have been in the top 10 nationally(each company had 100+ salespeople). I don't know why but people just enjoy buying stuff from me.

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