Food Rules You Should Break
There are certain popular myths regarding your health. Some are just the myths and some have at least a kernel of truth in them. Often myths help us to get dietary wisdom that in return helps us improving our health. Hereunder are given some of the most repeated myths to figure out the truth behind them along with the scientific analysis of them.
Eggs are Bad for Your Heart
Normally a single large egg contains about 211mg of cholesterol in their yolks. We all know that high levels of cholesterol in our body can cause the clogged arteries and heart attack. However, according to Penny Kris-Etherton, Ph.D., R.D., distinguished professor of nutrition at Penn State University, labeling eggs bad for your heart is a bit unfair. Epidemiologic studies show that a healthy man can eat an egg a day without having any problems.
Our body has some inbuilt system to produce less cholesterol in response to consumption of any amount of cholesterol from an egg or any other food. The problem arises when you consume saturated and Trans fats, which have a greater tendency to raise the blood cholesterol. As far as egg is concerned, Kris Etherton states that a large egg contains 2 grams of saturated fats and no Trans fats. It is also important to have a clear idea of American Heart Association’s diet and lifestyle recommendations. If you are a normal person, limit your cholesterol intake to less than 300 mg per day. If you have a heart disease or diabetes or over 55 for women and 45 for men, then limit it to less than 200 mg per day. You can make room for eggs in your diet with a certain modification in rest of the eating habits.
High-Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) is Worse for You than Sugar
According to the Center for Science in the Public Interest, a Washington, D.C.-based nutrition and health advocacy group, the urban myth that, “High-Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) is worse for you than Sugar,” is not right. High fructose corn syrup was introduced in order to imitate the sucrose. It is therefore has the same composition as that of sucrose, i.e. 55 percent fructose, 45 percent glucose, with sucrose the ratio is 50:50. It is an exact copy of sucrose in all respects. Different studies has been done to compare the effects of HFCS and other sweeteners and the results of all the studies show that both HFCS and sucrose have similar effects on blood glucose level, insulin, satiety hormones and triglycerides.
Consuming large amounts of sweeteners in the form of sodas and other sweetened drinks can raise the risks of insulin resistance, heart disease, fatty liver disease and Type II diabetes. It is not just because of the high calories these drinks contain but added fructose is also harmful for the body, says Kimber Stanhope, Ph.D., R.D., a researcher at the University of California, Davis, who has studied the sweetener extensively. Human body is not meant to handle a large amount of fructose at a time as it is not something that we come across so often in out diets.
The major thing that plays it role is the consumption of huge amount of sweet stuff at a time. For instance, too much honey, dehydrated cane juice or agave syrup. A normal amount would not be a problem at all. The American Heart Association suggested some numbers to the people to stay healthy. According to AHA, women should consume no more than 100 calories a day in added sugars (6 teaspoons), for it should be around 150 calories (9 teaspoons). However, in general the US population is consuming over 335 calories per day, which is no where near to AHA statistics.
A Raw-Food Diet Provides Enzymes that are Essential to Healthy Digestion
Brenda Davis, R.D., co-author of Becoming Raw: The Essential Guide to Raw Vegan Diets (Book Publishing, 2010) says that you can never get the nutrients from cooked food that you can get from unprocessed raw food. Often raw food promoters says that raw food enhance the digestion process by preserving the essential plant enzymes. But Davis is of the view that those enzymes are for the plant’s survival and have nothing to do with human health.
Everyone is aware of the fact that cooking a food above 118°F will inactive all the enzymes present in the food. Enzymes are the source of proteins and therefore, at high temperatures proteins break down, says Andrea Giancoli, R.D., a Los Angeles-based spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association. Our stomach is so designed that it can break down the proteins very effectively, so once the enzymes become denature and inactive their role to human digestions appear to be minimal, according to Davis.
Sometimes it is said that our bodies have limited supply of enzymes and to fulfill body requirements, food is required with their enzymes intact. Davis here states that our bodies are so designed to make enzymes throughout the life and there is no finite number of enzymes in body. As these are so important for human body, therefore human body naturally have the tendency to produce them.
Your Body can’t Use the Protein from Beans Unless You Eat Them with Rice
Proteins are an important part of human body as they are vital for the growth of muscles and hormones. These are actually consists of twenty amino acids. Our body generates eleven and the remaining nine we take from food. Normally eggs and meat provide all these nine amino acids but the plant foods are relatively low in these in one way or another. It is therefore necessary to use plant based food with complementary sets of amino acids, such as rice and bean to get the required proteins. Winston J. Craig, Ph.D., R.D., nutrition department chair at Andrews University in Berrien Springs, Michigan says that you need not to eat foods at the same meal. Consuming different kind of food entire day will be enough to raise the proteins’ contents in your body.
Part One: Radiation from Microwaves Creates Dangerous Compounds in Your Food
Radiation in more common sense refers to energy that travels in wavers and spreads out during its course of travelling. All the energy forms which we perceive as visual light, such as simple energy waves, microwave and radio waves are forms of radiation. X-rays and gamma rays are also radiations which are considered dangerous from health point of view. The radiations used in microwaves are far less in intensity than x-rays and gamma rays, according to Robert Brackett, Ph.D., director of the National Center for Food Safety and Technology at the Illinois Institute of Technology. He further adds that the food is prepared by generating heat inside the food and not the microwave themselves. So, it is pretty much similar to any other cooking method where heat is applied to food. One should only take care of the containers as if you use any plastic container, it will begin to melt and some of its components become part of your food. Always go for microwave-safe containers.
Part Two: Microwaving Zaps Nutrients
Professor Carol Byrd-Bredbenner, Ph.D., R.D., of nutrition at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey says that microwaving zaps nutrients is a false conception. According to her, whatever is the mode of cooking, such as microwave, solar-heated stove or a charcoal grill, the thing matter is the heat and the amount of time you take to cook not the cooking method. She is of the view that the longer and hotter you cook a food, the more chances will be there to lose heat sensitive and water sensitive nutrients like vitamin C and thiamin or a B vitamin. According to her, microwave actually reduces losses of nutrients by cooking quickly.
Filed Under: Nutrition