With Halloween candy surrounding you everywhere you go the thought of dieting is the furthest thing on your mind. A healthy diet is something that you will deal with in January. October is the beginning of the eating season.
The fact that there are so many dieting myths spinning around makes it hard to separate the myths from the facts. For those of you who are attempting to control eating habits and meal plans during the next few months here are a few diet myths you should not follow.
Myth: Weigh Yourself Daily. A scale is just a piece of equipment. Weighing daily gives it more power than it deserves. It cannot judge you. The thing does not have feelings or emotions. Some find it helpful with daily weighs and for others it increases anxiety. The key is knowing how you handle the numbers on the scale and deciding if the scale is part of the solution or the problem.
Myth: Eating Carbohydrates Before Bed Will Cause Weight Gain. Your digestive system is very efficient at processing carbs no matter the time of day. Eating high fiber foods like whole grains, fruits, and vegetables can help you feel full and add nutrients that your body requires.
Myth: Drinking More Water Will Help You Lose Weight. Close to 60% of the human body is composed of water. Swallowing enormous amounts of water daily will not cause you to shed pounds if you are still eating the same amount of food. If you replace sugary and high-calorie drinks with water, it can help to drop the pounds. But without healthy changes in the amount and kinds of food consumed, chugging water will just have you running to the restroom more often. But this additional exercise may be beneficial.
Myth: Going Gluten-Free Will Lead to Weight Loss. Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, and rye. Some people are allergic or sensitive to these grains. Anytime you decide to cut out a whole food group you run the risk of lacking nutrients. Talk to your doctor before eliminating gluten. Many of the Gluten-Free foods have more fat, saturated fat, salt, and sugar that their traditional gluten products.
Myth: All Calories Are Created Equal. There is so much more to food than just calories. A calorie is a unit of measure that calculates the amount of energy per unit. Foods contain calories but also a variety of vitamins, minerals, and fiber. Some nutrients in foods haven’t even been discovered yet. Aim for the overall quality of the foods you eat that is better for your weight and your health.
Myth: Eating Before Bed Will Cause Weight Gain. If you have skipped meals or haven’t eaten enough during the day, eating at night will not lead to weight gain. The biggest problem of nighttime snacking is controlling the amount. Portion size is exaggerated by television commercials and mindless bowl to hand to mouth munching is dangerous to the waistline. Consuming half or a quarter of your usual nighttime snack will make a difference.
Bobbie Randall is a registered, licensed dietitian, certified diabetes educator in Wooster, Ohio. Contact her at [email protected]