10 Myths about Nutrition

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Despite the development of our knowledge of nutrition, many continue to cling to outdated and irrelevant beliefs. Are you one of them? Here are 10 myths, already disproved by science!

Author: Krissy Kendall, Candidate of Science

When it comes to nutrition, false or inaccurate information can be found everywhere. Start a conversation with a stranger, or even a close person, and he will tell you that because of fat in the diet you will become fat. The surplus protein, of course, is worse than a fatty piece of meat, and egg yolks are generally the feces of hell.

What is the saddest thing? Among us there are a lot of "experts" in dietetics, and they make such loud statements even through the leading mass media, every word of which people listen with reverence! Therefore, it is sometimes very difficult to determine which information is true and which has nothing to do with it.

I suggest looking at 10 typical myths about nutrition and discover the truth!

Myth 1. The body can not digest more than 30 grams of protein

Over the years, people believed that the human body is able to digest only 30 grams of protein – that is, about 140 grams of chicken meat – at a time. Everything else goes to fat stores or is wasted. But is it really so?

To understand how this arbitrary ceiling turned into a rule, you need to return to the origins. Many years ago, scientists discovered that the maximum synthesis of muscle protein (SMP) is stimulated by approximately 20-30 grams of protein. Increasing this figure to 40 and more grams per meal, they did not receive any further enhancement of the effect. It turns out that the extra protein the body stores in the form of fat? Do not jump to conclusions!

Yes, the excess of amino acids theoretically can be converted into glucose – and eventually stored in fat stores – but this is a very long and costly process for our body. It is extremely unlikely that due to an extra portion of protein you will become fat. In fact, subjects who ate almost the same protein nearly choked themselves to death due to a condition known as "rabbit starvation," but they did not get fat! So let's put all the points and delete this myth from our list.

But does excess protein contribute to muscle growth? A prerequisite for muscle growth is the positive nitrogen balance, in which the SMP (muscle building) is faster than the breakdown of muscle protein (RMP). We know that SMP reaches its peak after consuming 20-30 grams of protein like whey. But what about RMP? Can the muscles use the same 20-30 gram to suppress RMP? Is there a similar ceiling for RMP, or in this case it will be more correct to talk about the lower boundary of the range? These scientists are trying to find out to this day.

The newest studies have shown that the consumption of 70 grams of protein in one sitting significantly increases the overall synthesis of protein in the body due to a sharp reduction in the breakdown of muscle protein. Although we are not yet sure to what extent this translates into large and strong muscles, this in two accounts refutes the statement that the body can not absorb more than 20 grams of protein at a time.

Conclusion: if you want to maximize the recovery and growth of muscles, you need to minimize the breakdown of muscle protein and boost its synthesis. I'm not saying that you need to eat an 70 gram of protein with each meal, but your body can accurately digest at a time more 30 grams of protein!

Myth 2. High-protein diet increases the risk of osteoporosis

We often hear that a high-protein diet can lead to osteoporosis, that is, to a decrease in bone density. Behind all this is the theory that a diet high in protein increases the acidity of the body, and this leads to leaching out of calcium bones to neutralize the acid. Sounds logical, does not it?

Fortunately, a long study of the relationship between protein intake and bone loss has not confirmed this theory. In one nine-week experiment, carbohydrates were replaced with meat (this dramatically increases the daily quota of protein). As a result, scientists recorded an increase in the secretion of hormones that strengthen bone tissue, for example, IGF-1.

A review article published in 2001 also says that there is no evidence of the detrimental effect of a high-protein diet on bone. Rather, on the contrary, everything indicates that increased protein intake improves the condition of bone tissue.

"We must debunk this myth," says Dr. Rob Wildman, head of the research department at Dymatize Nutrition. "Because of this misinformation, many people do not need to reduce the proportion of protein in their diet, especially the elderly, who absolutely need to get more protein."

There are many other scientific papers proving that protein increases the bone mineral density, reduces the risk of fractures, increases IGF-1 and dry body weight. We can send this myth to the dustbin of history.

Myth 3. High-protein diet – a blow to the kidneys

Your kidneys are incredibly effective in filtering unnecessary substances from your body. And as far as we know, a high-protein diet does not increase the burden on the kidneys. Kidneys are created to cope with just such tasks!

For example, a fifth of the blood pumped by the heart is filtered by the kidneys every one or two minutes. A small protein supplement can slightly increase the load, but in fact, it is a drop in the sea compared to the total amount of work that your kidneys are already doing.

Nevertheless, against the background of a high-protein diet, I advise you to drink more water, because your body releases more urine to remove the byproducts of protein breakdown. An additional portion of water is needed to make up for what is lost in the urine. But you must drink a lot of fluids anyway!

I will tell you what is an unnecessary blow to your kidneys – alcohol. If you want to give the body a breather, start with it!

Myth 4. Heat treatment reduces the biological value of protein

Thank God, in this myth there is not a shred of truth. Otherwise, we would always come across athletes, who, after training, would have cut cutlets from raw minced meat. Fortunately, you can prepare your protein and still get the most out of it.

Heat processing of meat products can not be avoided, but in well-roasted meat there is as much protein as in a steak with blood. And eating raw meat only increases the risk of food poisoning.

This myth often pops up in talking about protein powders, which are said to be denatured during cooking. I must say that this does not affect the quality of the protein. Whether the protein is heat treated or not, our body will assimilate the same number of amino acids from it.

Protein powders can even be baked. I'm constantly looking for new ways to add some protein to my diet, resulting in I get chocolate-filled cupcakes, oatmeal, pancakes and even pizza with a crisp crust!

Myth 5. It is necessary to take protein immediately after exercise

Forgot to take 30 gram of protein immediately after the final approach to the biceps? All is lost, you can say goodbye to the hope of progress! It's like a joke, but I can not even tell you how many times I heard such statements in the gym.

The so-called "anabolic window" is a period of time after training, when your body with special greed absorbs all nutrients, especially carbohydrates and protein, and delivers them straight to the muscles to help you with growth and recovery. It was once thought that the window was open only the first 30-60 minutes after training, but now we know that it exists for a longer period of time. In fact, the window is open for several hours after the completion of the training session.

If we are talking about building muscle, timing is not as important as it was once thought. Much more important is the amount of protein that you get every day. Standard portions of 30 gram of protein are usually sufficient to support the growth and recovery of muscles. Although post-training nutrition is important – it's a great time to optimize muscle growth, as protein synthesis is maximized – you need to focus on daily protein intake, not only at 30 minutes after training.

"Our notions of time for nutrients intake have changed. Today it includes all 24 hours per day, when you should get a portion of quality protein at certain times, including during the post-training period, says Wildman. – Of course, the first hours after training – this is the time when we can raise the NSR to the maximum values; but with the same responsibility should be approached to every reception of protein during the day. "

If the habit of drinking a post-training cocktail helps you not to forget about a portion of protein, go ahead! But there is no need to do this with a stopwatch.

Myth 6. Eat carbohydrates in the evenings, and you will become fat

At first glance, this has some common sense. In the evening hours we are not so active, and unless you are a sleepwalker, during sleep you will not have much physical activity. It follows that any carbohydrates after six in the evening will most likely be stored as fat, as metabolism slows down and insulin sensitivity decreases.

But the truth is that the intensity of the basal metabolism during the day and during sleep is not much different. Physical activity during the day can dramatically increase the metabolic rate at night, and this will lead to more fat oxidation, while you are watching dreams about the biceps 55 cm in the girth.

There is reason to believe that the truth is the opposite of this myth. In 2011, an interesting experiment was conducted. It turned out that subjects who received 80% of the daily carbohydrate norm over dinner lost weight and fat tissue faster than those in the control group who received carbohydrates in equal portions throughout the day. Moreover, the participants who leaned on carbohydrates in the evenings were less hungry.

I'm not trying to persuade you to save all the carbohydrates for dinner, but if you're hungry and you have a few more calories in your diet, do not be afraid of carbohydrates. Combine them with a portion of protein, and you will not only go to bed with a happy stomach, but also accelerate the growth and recovery of muscles.

All carbohydrates give you about 4 calories per gram, but on this the similarity between them ends, at least in terms of their digestion and utilization.

For example, carbohydrates with a high glycemic index are digested quickly, which means that they are instantly absorbed by the body. Because of this, the blood glucose concentration in the blood rises sharply, and after that – and the level of insulin. The feeling of hunger will return in about 45 minutes after taking simple carbohydrates, but they will be an excellent choice immediately after training, when your body needs a fast refueling. Such carbohydrates include confectionery products, fruit juices, sweets, most cereals and any products from premium flour.

Carbohydrates with a low glycemic index are absorbed much more slowly and provide a continuous supply of glucose into the blood. These carbohydrates should form the basis of your diet, as they give a lasting sense of satiety and often contain more vitamins and trace elements than simple sugars. These include vegetables, brown rice, beans and sweet potatoes.

Myth 8. Calories of fiber – does not count

Most of you know the term "pure carbohydrates." At the peak of the popularity of the Atkins diet it was invented by food companies to indicate the total amount of carbohydrates in the product after subtracting fiber and sugar alcohols. The essence of the idea is that not all carbohydrates are the same from the point of view of influence on the organism (see the myth 7). Fiber and sugar alcohols have a minimal effect on the level of glucose in the blood, and therefore they can be subtracted from the total carbohydrate content.

But sugar alcohols and fiber can not be completely discounted – their calories must be taken into account! I'll venture to suggest that if you are trying to cut down carbohydrate intake, your goal is to reduce body weight. Unfortunately, by counting only pure carbohydrates, and excluding all the others from the equation, you allow for a perceptible error that will most likely affect the results.

For much in this life you have to pay, and carbohydrates are no exception. For maximum results, consider all the carbohydrates of the daily ration. And if you need a product that really can be ignored, do not look for it among products with a label. Let it be green leafy vegetables!

Myth 9. Egg yolks lead to a heart attack

Poor egg yolks have been unfairly denigrated for decades. They were blamed for increasing cholesterol levels, increasing the risk of heart disease and detrimental effects on the circumference of your waist.

Why so much hate? Many years ago, scientists found a link between food cholesterol from foods such as egg yolks, and high blood cholesterol. High cholesterol can lead to hypertension and cardiovascular pathology, hence the propagation of the ban on egg yolks and the beginning of the movement in support of "pure egg whites".

There is nothing wrong with egg whites; this is a great low-calorie source of protein. But by neglecting the yolks, you lose a lot of nutrients. One whole egg contains 7 gram of high-grade protein, and the yolk makes it a good source of healthy nutrients for the heart, including omega-3, B vitamins and choline.

Although egg yolks contain about 185 mg of cholesterol, no controlled study has confirmed the connection between whole egg consumption and the risk of cardiovascular disease. In fact, a study by the University of Connecticut showed that egg yolks help raise the level of high density lipoproteins (HDL, or "useful" cholesterol).

Empirical studies may indicate a link between heart disease and egg consumption, but the real threat of cholesterol growth comes from the abuse of saturated fats and trans fats. Trans fats are often present in baked goods, confectionery and fast food.

If the doctor has not advised you to limit food cholesterol for any particular reason, do not be afraid to add a couple of whole eggs to your daily diet. Eat for your own pleasure!

Myth 10. Fats of food make you fat

Myth looks quite logical. The more fat in your diet, the more fat your body stores. A word is one, is not it?

The truth is that fat is not our enemy, but overeating and calories are yes. Of course, the love of fatty foods, for example, fried foods, cutlets and Chicago pizza, can greatly increase the volume of your waist, but the same will end up the abuse of potatoes, bagels and sweets, fat in which there is almost no.

If you want to lose weight, avoiding fats will not answer your questions. Choosing the right fats, you can quickly eat up and maintain a longer sense of satiety. Combine them with lean protein sources – another cool tool against hunger – and between basic meals you will hardly find yourself with a box of cookies in your hand. In fact, moderate amounts of fat in the diet are more useful for losing weight than a diet with a low fat content.

Try to give preference to monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats of olive oil, avocado, nuts and fish. Saturated fats found in eggs and meat are not necessarily harmful, but they are not as healthy as unsaturated fats.

Here, as elsewhere, moderation is important. Avoid extremes, constantly recheck information and do not take any nonsense on faith!

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