Friday, September 17, 2010

debunking food myths

Cooking foods destroys essential enzymes, therefore raw foods are better.

“Raw foods are unprocessed so nothing’s taken away; you don’t get the nutrient losses that come with cooking,” says Brenda Davis, R.D., co-author of Becoming Raw: The Essential Guide to Raw Vegan Diets (Book Publishing, 2010). But the claim by some raw-food advocates that eating raw boosts digestion by preserving “vital” plant enzymes, Davis explains, just doesn’t hold water. “Those enzymes are made for the survival of plants; for human health, they are not essential.” What about the claim by some raw-foodistas that our bodies have a limited lifetime supply of enzymes—and that by eating more foods with their enzymes intact, we’ll be able to spare our bodies from using up their supply? “The reality is that you don’t really have a finite number of enzymes; you’ll continue to make enzymes as long as you live,” says Davis. Enzymes are so vital to life, she adds, “the human body is actually quite efficient at producing them.”

Eggs are bad for your heart

Eggs do contain a substantial amount of cholesterol in their yolks—about 211 mg per large egg. And yes, cholesterol is the fatty stuff in our blood that contributes to clogged arteries and heart attacks. But labeling eggs as “bad for your heart” is connecting the wrong dots, experts say. “Epidemiologic studies show that most healthy people can eat an egg a day without problems,” says Penny Kris-Etherton, Ph.D., R.D., distinguished professor of nutrition at Penn State University. For most of us the cholesterol we eat doesn’t have a huge impact on raising our blood cholesterol; the body simply compensates by manufacturing less cholesterol itself. Saturated and trans fats have much greater impact on raising blood cholesterol. And a large egg contains only 2 grams of saturated fat and no trans fats. The American Heart Association recommends limiting cholesterol intake to less than 300 mg daily—less than 200 mg if you have a history of heart problems or diabetes or are over 55 (women) or 45 (men). “That works out to less than an egg a day for this population—more like two eggs over the course of the week,” notes Kris-Etherton.

Carbs will make you fat

Contrary to the theories of the low-carb/no carb manifesto, Dr. Atkins’ Diet Revolution, first published in 1972 (and the similar books that followed), there’s nothing inherently fattening about carbohydrates, says Jean Harvey-Berino, Ph.D., R.D., chair of the department of nutrition and food sciences at the University of Vermont and co-author of The EatingWell Diet (Countryman, 2007). “It’s eating too many calories, period, that makes you fat.”
There’s no question that loading up on sugary and refined-carbohydrate-rich foods, such as white bread, pasta and doughnuts, can raise your risk of developing health problems like heart disease and diabetes. But if you cut out so-called “good-carb” foods, such as whole grains, beans, fruits and vegetables, you’re missing out on your body’s main source of fuel as well as vital nutrients and fiber. What’s more, for many people, a low-carb diet may be harder to stick with in the long run.
When a handful of major studies recently compared low-carb diets with low-fat diets and other approaches to losing weight, notes Harvey-Berino, they found that in the first few months, those following the low-carb diets tended to lose slightly more weight. “That’s because low-carb diets are more restrictive,” she explains. “Anything that limits your choices will help you lose weight initially.” But after a year or as much as three years, weight-loss differences between the diets tend to even out. One recent report noted that although there was a greater weight loss initially, low-carb dieters tended to regain more weight by the end of three years when compared with low-fat dieters.
But Harvey-Berino acknowledges that low-carb eating can help many people manage their weight—especially if you’re “one of those people who has a hard time staying in control when you eat carbohydrate-rich foods.” No matter how you slice it, the best diet is one you can stick to, she adds. “If you can stick with an Atkins-like regimen, then go for it.”

You must fast or detox periodically to cleanse the body

The truth: Your body has its own elegantly designed system for removing toxins—namely, the liver, kidneys and spleen. There isn’t any evidence that not eating—or consuming only juice—for any period of time makes them do this job any better. Source: Keith-Thomas Ayoob, Ed.D., R.D., of Albert Einstein College of Medicine 

This info was taken from the Huffington Post article that was culled from Eating right magazine's article by By Joyce Hendley
I don't agree with everything in the full article, but I do agree with the info I posted here. 

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