By Steph Claire Smith and laura henshaw, founders of kicgirls.com
Are you guilty of not eating certain foods because you were told they were bad for you? Or convinced that “fat-free” is healthy? You’re not alone. We’re plating up our top 10 food myths so you can cook with confidence, variety and flavour.
1. Fruit is sugary and you shouldn’t eat it.
Poor old fruit; it’s copped an unfair rep lately. Fruit contains naturally occurring sugars (not that sugars you find in chocolate bars) and is high in water and fibre. We love fruit and use it in our breakfast smoothies. Put simply, eating fruit won’t make you fat.
2. Olive oil will clog your arteries.
Wrong! Olive oil consists of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats which are the good kinds of fat. Olive oil (which is part of the Mediterranean diet) is loaded with antioxidants and anti-inflammatories, and when consumed properly, has no relationship to weight gain or high cholesterol.
3. Eggs are bad for your heart.
Let’s crack this one. Egg paranoia is based on the old assumption that eating the yolks will raise blood cholesterol – not true. The cholesterol in eggs has almost no effect on our blood cholesterol levels. Cholesterol levels are more influenced by saturated and trans fat – not found in eggs.
4. Fat-free is healthy.
Be careful. “Fat-free” or “low fat” may not be the smart option. Often these products are loaded with sugars and chemicals to replace the flavour. Also, when the fat is removed, you’ll find you won’t feel full after eating, so you could end up over-eating.
5. Eating fat will make you fat.
We can’t imagine our lives without avocado, fish and nuts. Eating a diet with good fats will fuel you with energy, help your body to absorb fat-soluble vitamins, keep your brain active and sharp, and will keep you fuller for longer.
6. Fresh always beats frozen.
There’s nothing wrong with keeping some frozen veg in the freezer – especially when you need a quick dinner on the go. And although fresh is genuinely better, if the veg is flash frozen shortly after harvesting, they typically contain the same amount of nutrients as their fresh cousins.
7. Skipping breakfast will help you lose weight.
No, no, no! You need breakfast to kick start your day with energy. Skipping breakfast will make you starving by mid-morning so you’re more likely to binge. If you’re not hungry in the morning, try one of our smoothies. They’re not only quick and easy to make, they’re super delicious.
8. Gluten-free diets have fewer calories.
Some people think this is the secret to weight loss. Unless you have a gluten intolerance, there’s no need to cut it out. Some supermarket foods labelled as “gluten free” are packed with refined sugars and chemicals, which will leave you feeling hungry and unsatisfied.
9. Always choose the salad when eating out.
Before careful. You may think you’re ordering the healthy option, but your salad may be worse than a bowl of hot chips. Fried croutons, processed cheese and creamy dressings may undo all your hard work at the gym.
10. Nuts are unhealthy.
Again, no! Nuts contain healthy fats (refer to point 6) and help keep you full. They make a great snack and are delicious in dressings in smoothies. However, make sure you’re eating raw or dry nuts only, not the salted variety.
For more information, visit kicgirls.com