10 Food Myths

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10 Food Myths by Askipedia.com

1. Granola Bars Are Good For Me.

Think again!  Most of the tasty granola bars you find at the supermarket come in fancy boxes, with lots of green, pictures of oats, and pictures of healthy looking people in their designer gym duds.  These ‘healthy’ snack bars taste great, so does a candy bar, which has just about the same amount of calories, sugar, and fat content!  Most granola bars are small too, which may make some of you think that two may do better for you than one.  Might as well grab a kit-kat while your at it.

Sure you can find a healthy granola bar, but those are the ones that taste like you are chewing on a piece of wood.  Mmm good…


2. Bran Muffins Make a Good Breakfast.

Sure they do, if your idea of a healthy start to the day is a piece of chocolate cake. Did you ever notice that the little muffin wrapper that you patiently peel the bottom is usually close to transparent?  That’s all the fat oozing out of the little cake your are about to stuff into your face.  Most bran muffins have an almost identical ingredient list to cakes, and cake is filled with fat and sugar. One medium sized Blueberry Bran Muffin has about 1/3 of the fat you are supposed to consume in the whole day.  Similar to a ‘Breakfast Sandwich’ or ‘Sausage McMuffin’.  Yikes!


3. Skip the Burger, Grab a Salad.

Many of us simply can’t find the time to prepare a home made lunch to bring into work.  The solution, a quick stop at Wendy’s and grab a combo.  When you get there, your conscience kicks in as you peruse the menu, and you decide on a Mandarin Chicken Salad.  Looks nice, and must be health! Think again.  You’d be better off with a Double Cheese Burger, because that salad has more calories, fat and sugar!  Hard to believe, but next time you are looking for a little health food pickup, grab the nutrition chart most fast food chains now offer, usually tucked off in a corner somewhere, and get a better picture of what you are about to order.


4. All Natural Deli Meat’s and Hot Dogs are Better For You.

With more and more people jumping on the ‘organic’ bandwagon, new ‘healthy’ and ‘natural’  products are finding their way onto store shelves.  Fancy packages, impressive names, ingredient lists promoting ‘all natural ingredients’  Must be better for you!  Well just think, arsenic is a natural mineral, and I am pretty sure you all know that is bad for you.  Most prepared meats need nitrates, which is a known carcinogen, but it keeps the meat looking fresh.  Without it, your all natural hot dogs would be grey, not pink, and your sliced roasted turkey breast would last about 3 days, not the 3 weeks that most of the best before dates imply.  But wait, you don’t see ‘nitrates’ on that ingredient list, well that is because they found a ‘natural’ alternative ‘Cultured Celery Extract’.  Maybe it is the ‘celery’ part that makes you think it must be good for you, but it is a perfect nitrate mimic, carcinogenic qualities and all!


5. Fresh is better than Frozen.

So you are at the grocery store, and you decide to pick up some fresh beans for dinner, thinking they are much better for you than the frozen ones.  Well it turns out that our food is mostly grown hundreds or thousands of miles away from where you shop, and that transportation takes time, and time is the enemy of fresh produce.  As the clock ticks, both nutrients and flavour are lost. Many of the frozen producers are located much closer to the food source to make transportation to their facility much cheaper.  As a result, those fresh green beans you just picked up have about 1/2 the vitamin C that is left in the frozen ones!


6.  Beer is Bad.

While consuming too much alcohol is definitely not recommended, and can have adverse effects on the body, drinking some types in moderation, such as beer, or wine can actually produce some health benefits.  Beer is very low in fat, cholesterol, and carbohydrates.  Actually a pear might have 5 times the amount of carbs in the skin as a bottle of brew!  Beer is a good source of fibre, from the barley used to brew it, and is a source of vitamins B, zinc, potassium, phosphorous, calcium, riboflavin, niacin, and antioxidants, all of which are part of a healthy diet.  Some studies have even shown beer to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s, diabetes, and even cancer. Now I’ll drink to that!


7.  Low Fat = Healthy

Not necessarily true.  Many ‘low fat’ products have increased sugar and salt, which can sometimes make them worse for you than the full fat version.  Then there are healthy fats, like olive oil and the mono saturated fats found in things like avocados.  Those types of fat can actually HELP with weight loss, and even lower your cholesterol!


8.  Bottled Water is Better.

Sounds like a reasonable conclusion, considering the price you have to pay, and how nice some of the packaging is!  Truth is, many studies have shown that bottled water is actually worse for you than well water, or city water.  Many bottled water producers are not subject to the same standards of water quality testing that is performed by the city before water flows into your house.  Check those bottled water labels, some will even show that the source is in fact city water!  Then there are the concerns that chemicals leach out of the plastic bottles and make the water even worse!


9.  Chocolate Causes Acne.

If you’ve ever been to High School, I am sure you are familiar with this one.  It may be true, but only if you rub it on your face.  Not only is chocolate not a cause, some types of chocolate are even good for you, in moderation that is.  Dark chocolate can contain 5-10 times the amount of antioxidants found in strawberries, and has even been found to lower blood pressure, and cholesterol.


10.  I Eat Junk Food, I Just Exercise it Off!

Sure you do. Exercise is good for you, there is no doubt about that.  But do you know what it actually takes to burn the calories of some of your favourite snacks?  Eat a candy bar?  Hope you walked an extra hour today!  How about a couple of small scoops of ice cream? Hope you set that treadmill for an extra hour! Only have an extra 30 minutes to run? I guess you can indulge on a small slice of pizza.


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