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Everyone loved the first set of 5 nutritional myths, half-truths and exaggerations… so, guess what?
There Are More!
That shouldn’t surprise you since new myths are spouted daily; so many, in fact, that I will tackle 5 each week!
It’s truly amazing how much false information is floating around out there.
Let’s make sure you’re armed with the facts before you fall victim to the next fitness or nutrition myth!
Some of the myths this week you may have a question about or want to debate. I welcome your comments! Remember, these are also exaggerations and half-truths, but please comment. I would love your feedback!
Myth #6: A vegetarian diet is healthier than a diet which includes meat.
Agreed, eating a lot of veggies is nutritious, but cutting out an entire food group is not always a great idea.
Meat is our key source of iron. It helps us think clearly, increases our energy levels and produces enzymes which help us fight infection. Vegetarians will try to get their iron from lentils, beans and tofu, but protein is still missing.
If you are a vegetarian, be sure to eat eggs, dairy or soy at every meal.
Myth #7: Hot baths prevent muscle soreness.
In actuality, COLD water is better. It’s like an ice pack for your entire body.
Think about this, when we exercise, our blood vessels open wider and stay this way for a least an hour after we complete our workout. Soreness is from our bodies producing lactic acid and settling into our muscles.
The colder temperature will constrict the vessels, controlling the amount of lactic acid this accumulated, thus lessening our muscle soreness.
Myth #8: Running is counterproductive to strength training.
I love this one because I run and lift. This is true if you want to add super mass to your physique.
In fact, as a weight-bearing exercise, running helps develop more lean muscle mass in the lower body and helps keep our bones healthy.
I’m not saying to substitute running for strength training by any means. We still need to get in those squats, lunges, push-ups and pull-ups. These exercises help us increase stamina, reduce injury risk and push our metabolism to work harder.
So, this could be considered a half-truth.
Myth #9: Fresh fruit is better than frozen fruit.
I can’t tell you how many times I hear someone boasting about going to the fresh markets and produce stands for fruit because “It’s better for you!” Not so, and you are paying way too much for your berries.
Since fresh fruit is shipped and stored, it can sit around for up to 2 weeks before you get it in your hands.
Fruit can lose a lot of nutrients, especially vitamin C during this time. Frozen fruit is picked and then frozen during the peak of its freshness. Frozen fruit makes smoothies taste better and also makes them colder.
Just keep in mind to stay away from fruit packaged with syrups.
Myth #10: Muscle turns to fat when you take a break from strength training.
This not necessarily true. Our bodies feed off of our environment.
Muscles are created by exposing them to situations that make them plump and stronger, in order to survive, meaning lifting.
When we stop training, we change our environment, and the muscles need to battle will stop.
Muscles will atrophy from non-use and you will burn fewer calories.
Your appetite will probably remain the same, which means you would consume more calories than your body can burn since you are not lifting. The metabolism slows down, too.
So, although muscle doesn’t turn to fat when you stop weight training, you will increase your fat percentage as your muscle shrinks.
BONUS MYTH!!!! “NO PAIN, NO GAIN!!”
No, I’m not referring to The Rock or Mark Wahlberg, although awesome movie!
This is an exaggerated tale.
I added it this week because I heard a few of my clients use it while I was training them.
I stopped them in their tracks.
This statement will sometimes do more harm than good. Yes, you should feel some level of soreness a day or two after working out, but that should feel very different from feeling any pains during a workout.
Fitness experts do not advise “working through the pain.”
If it hurts, stop. Rest and see if it goes away. If it begins again or worsens, then seek a physician’s advice.
How many of these have you heard of?
How many have you passed on, believing they were true?
I’m sure I have mentioned one or two of these in passing. But, never will again.
Stay tuned every week for the next 5 myths, half-truths and exaggerations!