With a ton of fad diets and bad health advice circling around the internet these days, it’s tough to decipher what’s fact and what’s fiction. Below is a round up of health myths we’ve cleared up for you.
Here are our top 5 health myths debunked:
- Carbs are bad for you
It turns out that those of us on low-carb diets aren’t really doing our bodies any favors. For a long time now, carbs have been blamed for weight gain. But healthy carbohydrates, like those found in whole grains, legumes, and fruit, are nutrient-rich and provide your body with necessary energy (https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/is-it-really-worth-not-eating-bread-pasta-and-other-carbs/2015/02/06/cd6d1c38-89e2-11e4-a085-34e9b9f09a58_story.html). The real problem may lie in the overconsumption of carbs. Many carb-rich foods are indulgent, like white bread or pasta, but overeating anything can lead to weight gain. Too much of anything is too much, but on the whole, carbs are not bad for you.
- High fructose corn syrup is worse than sugar
High fructose corn syrup is added to many food products because it’s cheap to use, and slightly sweeter than a similar dose of sugar. It looks like we’ve been panicking for nothing though. There is no good evidence supporting the idea that HFCS is any worse for your body than regular sugar. In fact, the two are actually so similar that they are almost identical, but that only makes HFCS just as bad for you as sugar, which definitely isn’t good. And, to top it off, it’s far worse for the environment, and is generally a marker for processed foods, so avoiding it might still be a good idea.
- Running is bad for your knees
If you crave that runner’s high, we have good news for you: running will not damage your knees. On the contrary, one Swedish study actually suggests that jogging may be good for joint health. It would appear that running can actually stimulate cartilage to repair minor damage, and increases both bone and muscle mass. The only cases in which running seems to negatively affect knee joints is where an injury was previously suffered or the person routinely ran really fast. So, unless you’ve suffered a knee injury, don’t quit your morning jog.
- Being cold will make you sick
Despite our elder’s warnings, spending time outside in the winter will not make you sick. In fact, it looks like the cold might actually help our bodies fight infection. Being in freezing temperatures puts your body under stress, and in response, our bodies increase cells that fight infection. Plus, cold viruses thrive best at 91 degrees, so the cold could be doing you a favor there as well. But remember: spending too much time in the cold can still give you hypothermia. That’s not a myth! So bundle up.
- Eating at night can make you gain weight
Undoubtedly someone has told you that you should never eat past 6 PM. In fact, it makes no difference. What causes weight gain is eating more calories than you burn, so as long as you’re maintaining a healthy diet and exercising regularly, it doesn’t really matter when you eat. The only smidgen of truth here might be that eating at night increases your odds of overeating, which is bad any time of day. So, if you’re craving a snack before bed, just make sure it’s portion controlled.
There you have it! If knowledge is power, you now have a new arsenal of facts in your back pocket. Do you have a health myth that’s not listed above that you’d like to debunk? We want to hear from you! Share in the comments below.