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Top 5 Dieting Myths

VO: Ashley Bowman

Written by George Pacheco

Looking to lose a few pounds? Well, here are some tips you probably shouldn’t follow. Welcome to WatchMojo's Top 5 Myths, the series that finds the biggest myths people actually believe, and dispels them one by one. In this instalment we’re looking at the five myths about dieting that left us hungry for the truth.

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Written by George Pacheco

Top 5 Dieting Myths



Looking to lose a few pounds? Well, here are some tips you probably shouldn’t follow.
Welcome to WatchMojo's Top 5 Myths, the series that finds the biggest myths people actually believe, and dispels them one by one.
In this instalment we’re looking at the five myths about dieting that left us hungry for the truth.

#5: Juice cleanses are an effective way to detox and lose weight



Ditching solid foods and nourishing yourself with a liquid diet of wholesome juices is like a metabolic boot camp, right?
Well, Maybe you should step away from the blender for a minute and hear us out.
Although fruits and veggies are packed with vitamins, taking 3000% the recommended daily dose of vitamin A is not going to turn you into Popeye.
Your kidneys will simply filter out and excrete the excess.
On the subject of excretion, your body is generally pretty good at getting rid of whatever it doesn’t need on its own, so your gut is not full of toxins waiting to be cleansed by a wave of spinach juice.
Juices also don’t fare much better from a weight loss standpoint, as their caloric content comes mostly from sugar.
Without protein or fat, this meal will fail to satisfy your hunger.
Prolonged periods of juicing will only lead to the body suffering the effects of starvation, which can result in temporary weight loss.
We say temporary because after a month of drinking carrot juice for lunch, more likely than not you’ll be looking at that hamburger and chocolate cake with renewed lust.

#4: Eating protein and carbohydrates separately will maximize weight loss



Ok, the idea behind this myth is that our bodies utilize different enzymes in order to break down and digest carbohydrates such as pasta and rice from proteins like red meat, fish or poultry…
As a result, consuming these things separately will improve our digestion and promote weight loss. Unfortunately, nutritionists who have studied the human bodies' digestion systems haven't come up with any evidence that separating our meals in this way will achieve either of these goals.
In fact, the exact opposite seems to be true, as combining protein with some fiber-rich sources of carbs will actually stimulate the body and boost energy, causing us to burn through those calories at a faster rate.
The best way to do this? Mix up your diet with a variety of unrefined, whole grains, low fat dairy products, lean meats and beans to maximize that long term energy!

#3: Eating small, frequent meals boosts your metabolism



Our metabolisms spike up every time we eat a meal, so if we just pair down our dinners into smaller, more frequent snacks, we'll burn off more calories, right?
Well, this is slightly true, especially if any of these meals involve the intake of caffeine, but the truth behind this myth is that the difference between calories is too small to really make a difference.
Our metabolic rate is far more reliant upon how our bodies are composed than it is on how often we eat. This explains why professional weight lifters or body builders are often so concerned with caloric intake and how the muscles are responding to their basal metabolic rate, or how much energy is expended when the body is at rest.
For the average person, however, eating more often will just add calories to your daily total, no matter how small or spaced out those meals might be.

#2: Diet foods help you diet



The next myth on our list is one which has gained steam in recent years, thanks to a number of high profile articles and studies.
Sure, it seemed too good to be true when the fat free food and diet soda fads first hit our T.V. screens and grocery store shelves.
Eat all we want while still losing weight? Who doesn't want to give that diet plan a try?
Unfortunately, many studies have shown that these products can actually lead to weight gain.
Researchers have found that although artificial sweeteners do not contain calories, they provoke even stronger insulin spikes than traditional sugar, which lead to weight gain and strong cravings for more sweets, not to mention an increased risk for diabetes.

Fat-free and low-fat foods are also to be avoided. Fat is high in calories, so replacing it with a filler lowers the calorie count on your diet snack.
The problem is, the filler is often composed of carbohydrates, which turn to sugar and affect your insulin levels in a way that can actually slow down your metabolism.

#1: If you cut out fat, you lose fat!



This may seem counter-intuitive, but a proper and balanced diet is actually dependent on our intake of fat. We need good fats, such as the unsaturated and Omega 3 fats found in foods like some fish and nuts, to help us feel full and avoid cravings, which may lead to unhealthy eating.
Plus, consuming these healthy fats makes it easier for our bodies to absorb the various vitamins and nutrients from the other food we eat during the day.
Protein, carbohydrates and fat are all essential building blocks to a healthy diet.
It’s excess consumption, which can be dangerous and conducive not only to weight gain, but other health risks such as heart disease and high cholesterol.
Selecting the right sources and portions of fat will ensure that your dietary goals are met, which will result in a healthier, happier you!

So, which of these myths did you believe? This is what the Google searchers look for in the online world of dieting: what diet will get rid of love handles? Can Eating Paper Kill you? Is Chicken Parmesan Vegan? For more healthy top fives and tasty top tens, please subscribe to WatchMojo.com!
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