Hello Health Heads,
We hope you’re having a fit and healthy week.
This is our last week in Korea before we start 4 months of travel. First stop is Bangkok next week, then on to Vietnam for two weeks, then London and Ireland (Steve’s home). After Ireland we will be moving to Canada for the foreseeable future. It’s exciting times for us and for you the reader. We will be posting regularly on our travels, writing much more great content for you to enjoy.
Today we’re talking about some common nutrition misconceptions we see plastered across social media and online. It’s often difficult to decipher whether the food and messages you see are healthy or not. As always we are here to clear things up for you, and filter out the bulls%#t.
Myth #1: Carbohydrates are the enemy, they make you fat.
Carbs are the talk of the town these days. Yes, you will lose weight by avoiding carbs (water weight) but you are also cutting off your main energy source. Without energy how do you expect to perform at a high level in practice and competition? The brain also uses carbs for fuel in the form of brain glycogen, so a decline in mental focus can be created by a carb deficit. Muscles also use carbs for their main fuel storage, glycogen. Glycogen is the fuel that is called on when exercising at all intensities, especially at high intensities. The main limiter of endurance performance is your glycogen stores, so fuel up wisely. The fuller your glycogen stores, the better your body can perform. Carbs have 4 calories per gram vs. 4 for protein, 7 for alcohol and 9 per gram of fats. Most carbs convert to muscle glycogen if you’re an active individual, so there’s no need to avoid them! Eventually you will gain weight by eating carbs if you OVER eat and have a calorie surplus over time. The best carbs are the naturally sourced ones like potatoes, rice etc.
Myth #2: Eating UBER healthy is the only way to go.
When is the last time you’ve seen a nice balanced meal on social media, that didn’t include avocados, quinoa, almonds or other expensive foods? These are healthy foods, there’s no doubting that. However, there are plenty of other healthy foods that don’t cost nearly as much. Foods like eggs, potatoes, carrots etc. are really cheap and although they aren’t ‘trendy’ they can make up a well-balanced healthy diet. You don’t need to worry about consuming expensive ‘superfoods’ to be healthy. A balanced meal is the important thing to focus on. Consistently eating balanced meals trumps a few uber healthy meals per week.
Myth #3: Intermittent fasting is a great way to lose weight.
Yes, you can lose weight from fasting, but you can also lose weight eating regular meals. We are against anything that is temporary, unless there is a medical purpose to the diet. Intermittent fasting will cause high levels of fatigue and hunger. The body will adapt over time, but long periods of fasting will result in a fat storage response by the body, potentially derailing your hard work. Any prolonged period of dietary change has a negative impact on the bodies immune system, energy and hormone levels, so ere on the side of caution….YOUR BODY IS A TEMPLE!
Myth #4: Cheat days are a great way of satisfying your sweet tooth.
Ah cheat days….. a blow out at the end of a super healthy week. Your sweet cravings have been surpressed all week and now it’s time to enjoy a cheat day. The problem is, the blowout is usually a big blowout, potentially derailing your progress during the week. Eating excess calories is inevitable. If you crave sweet foods, we think it’s much better to have one sweet a day or one treat every few days. It’s better to satisfy your urge rather than surpress it and have a massive blowout later in the week. Anyway, the odd treat is all part of a healthy diet.
Myth #5: Following an online diet plan is a great way to eat healthy.
Generic nutrition plans are helpful as a template for you own diet plan. The downside is they are often hard to follow and aren’t SPECIFIC to your needs and goals. Plan your own diet plan around active and non-active days, instead of strict timelines. Listen to your body and what it needs to feel satisfied throughout the day. THE BEST DIET PLAN IS ONE THAT KEEPS YOU FEELING ENERGETIC AND SATISFIED.
What other misconceptions would you add to our list?
We hope this article cleared up some grey areas for you.
Until next time,