A few Myths!!

Carbs make you fat!!

Let’s just nip this one in the bud, carbs do not make you fat. Overeating on carbs makes you fat and this where the real issue lies. In today’s world, processed carbs are readily available, in an abundance and designed to make you want more. Many people site carbs as causing our insulin levels to spike and making more and more people insulin sensitive. Insulin sensitivity can be caused by a multitude of factors, overeating, poor lifestyle, low levels of activity and genetics (diabetes).

So as long as we are living a healthy balanced lifestyle, then carbs are not our enemy and we should enjoy them.

So how come Betty at work has cut out carbs and lost loads of weight? Simple she has eliminated a whole food group, thus massively reducing her calorie intake. But is Betty a miserable cow? Probably, because who doesn’t love carbs?

Bread is bad for you!!

Closely related to the last myth, bread gets a right old bashing these days.

The truth is as was above, eating too much bread is the problem. Bread is inherently quite dense in calories and tends to be eaten with other ingredients such as butter, nut butter and spreads. Therefore, before you know your calorie intake has rocketed.

But what about the gluten? Gluten-free is all the rage right. Unless you have celiac, then I’m pleased to tell you not to worry about the gluten (which is a protein believe it or not).

The Detox!!!

Detox diets tend to limit the body of certain food groups and replace with a plant-based juice/smoothie blend.

The idea of the detox is to flush the body of toxins, however, a 2009 investigation questioned 10 of the top detox companies and asked them exactly what toxins their products removed from the body. Funnily enough, none of these companies could name one toxin.

So why do they remain popular 10 years on, simply the short terms weight loss. Within 24 hours of detox and carbohydrate restriction, your cells will have diminished glycogen stores, thus leading to less water retention and less overall weight (note weight and not fat). However, once you end the detox and go back to your normal ways, glycogen stores are replenished, and more water is retained leading us back to where we started.

Eating after 6pm makes you fat!!

Absolute bull, by now we know that what makes us fat is eating more calories than we burn. So the myth of eating after 6 pm makes no sense.

Why people may believe this? If we are to eat late on in the evening, chances are this will have a carry on to the next morning if we come to weigh ourselves, also depending on what we’ve eaten? If our late meal was high in sodium then our body will hold on to more water, thus giving us the illusion in the morning we have put weight on.

Studies have shown no real difference in weight loss between those who eat early and those who eat late.  What has been shown though is that people who claim to have put on weight from eating late, have in fact overspent on their calories, typically late night snackers.

Protein straight after a workout?

When you exercise, you damage your muscles, which your body then needs to repair, often making them more resilient (bigger) in the process. The raw material for this repair is the protein you ingest, yet the existence of a post-workout “anabolic window” for this ingestion remains a bit of a mysterious topic.

So, don’t sweat if you don’t have a protein shake to hand as soon as you put the last dumbbell down. What is important is to make sure you are eating enough protein throughout the day.  And typically, 1-2 hours post workout.