Fitness Myths Debunked: Calories, Fat, and Carbs — OH MY!
Welcome to the second edition of Fitness Myths Debunked! This time, I’ll fill you in on some more of my favorite topics:
- Carbs are the enemy ?
- Eating fat makes you fat ?
- You must count your calories!
Myth #1: Carbs Are the Enemy
Carbohydrates are NOT the enemy and never have been!
In fact, carbs are a great source of fiber and our bodies preferred source of energy. Our body needs carbs in order to have enough energy in our day, and especially in our workouts!
When considering good carbs vs. bad carbs, think FRESH first. Shop the outside of the grocery store; the middle isles are reserved for mostly junk!
Pro Tip: focus on all macronutrients (carbs, protein, and fat) when eating a meal, since it is too easy to eat too many carbohydrates.
JUNK food is the real enemy.
The real enemy is the carbs found in processed foods.
White bread, baked goods, and sugary drinks are just a few! Remember that middle isle at the grocery store I was talking about? Isn’t this where you find these items? EXACTLY! It is also where you find sugary cereals and chips ?♀️.
When we eat these processed foods, our system for knowing when we are full breaks down. Junk food is addictive, overriding our natural ability to sense that we are full. That’s the reason why “once you start, you can’t stop!”
Myth #2: Eating Fat Makes You Fat
Don’t confuse fat with junk food.
We can blame sugar, refined grains, and fried food for making us fat — not fat itself! Good fat can be found in many delicious foods that don’t leave you smelling like you left the closest fast food chain.
Some great healthy fatty foods include eggs (yolk), nuts, chia seeds, olive/coconut oil, flats seed, fatty fish, and pork.
Fat is more satiating than protein and carbs, so eating foods that contain good fat (like those mentioned above) will help your body feel fuller longer. We also will have a hard time overeating these foods because our bodies “we are full gauge” will tell us to stop! That is why eating a fat in your balanced meal is important.
Myth #3: You Must Count Your Calories
I can’t remember the last time I counted my calories. I do remember, however, feeling completely consumed by how many calories I had eaten and how many I have left to eat. Did I really know how many calories I needed throughout the day? I could have gone to get a body scan, but that doesn’t tell me how many calories my body absorbs from food.
Not all calories are created equal. Remember all my babbling about refined carbs — about what will help us feel full longer?
How about a bag a chips vs. a handful of nuts? Remember, you’re more likely to eat the bagful because of our bodies inability to tell us we are full when eating junk!
Pro Tip: Your body doesn’t burn off food calories-for-calories. Eating a big, unhealthy, value meal and thinking you can go to the gym and burn off the 1500 calories+ you just ate doesn’t work!
High Quality and Appropriate Portions is Key ?
As long as we eat real, whole foods, our bodies internal calorie counter will turn on, giving us the feeling of satiety.
Our bodies really are an amazing tool, so listen to it!
Pro Tip: dish a small plate with your carbs, protein, and fat. When finished, if you still feeling hungry, set time for 20 minutes and drink a glass of water. After that 20 minutes is up and you’re still hungry, then go for a second helping if you really need it! (Thank you Mr. CPM for this great advice.) Also, slow down. I have just added counting my chews with each bite into my meal routine. I am a fast eater, and this really taught to slow down and actually taste my food. It’s amazing how I get the feeling of satiety now!
Fun Fact: Meal prepping helps with portion control and keeping your meals compliant. Live out of Tupperware!
Still Believing Nutrition Myths?
Come on now — there’s a better way to reach your nutritional goals! Drop us a message and we’ll pair you with a coach here in Sioux Falls to help you set achievable, sustainable goals.