5 Big, Fat Diet Myths--Busted!

Pause               1 of 7

5 Big, Fat Diet Myths--Busted!

There are a lot of misconceptions out there about food and dieting, and we're here to clear the air! Here are the straight facts on eating for weight loss--no deprivation required.

Diet Myth #1: You Have to Eat Less to Lose Weight

No way! We say NO growling bellies, NO deprivation, and NO puny portions. We fill up our plates with healthy food, so the eyes and the stomach are satisfied. The more satisfied you feel after a meal, the less you'll eat later. Boost satiety by eating water-rich foods, filling fiber, and plenty of healthy fats, while staying within your calorie range.

Diet Myth #2: Plain Veggies Are Better for You

If you're opting for fat-free dressings because you think it's better for you, think again. Small amounts of healthy fats are an important part of the satisfaction of a salad. Plus, your body can't make use of certain vitamins and antioxidants (beta-carotene, vitamin D, and vitamin E in particular) without a bit of fat to help process them. Ditch the fat-free stuff and dip your fork into a dressing made with olive oil for heightened meal satisfaction and nutrient absorption!

Diet Myth #3: Low-Fat and Low-Salt Meals Are Flavorless

There are plenty of tricks you can use to impart flavor with almost zero calories and very little sodium. When you’re watching fat and calories, herbs, spices, and certain condiments are your new best friends. They add flavor and pizzazz to your cooking with little to no calories and fat. Do take care in your choice of premade spice blends and condiments, however, as many of the versions you get in the supermarket are full of salt—a big no-no when you’re watching your sodium levels or you have high blood pressure.

Diet Myth #4: Fat-Free Foods Are the Best Choice

When you remove the fat from foods that naturally contain them, you have to replace the fat with some other ingredients (often sugar or salt). Instead of choosing the fat-free version of your favorite cheese, which will lack the satisfyingly rich mouth feel of the original, choose the reduced-fat version. It will retain some of that richness with less fat and fewer calories.

Diet Myth #5: Baking and Steaming Are the Only 'Healthy' Cooking Methods

No way! There are lots of healthy ways to prepare food to make it both nutritious and flavorful. Grilling, sauteeing, sweating and broiling are just a few of the other fun options for preparing delicious food that will support your weight loss. Give them a go to add some variety to your diet!

Hungry for More?

Want additional tips for preparing healthy meals, plus over 150 delicious recipes for weight loss? Get cooking with ''The SparkPeople Cookbook: Love Your Food, Lose the Weight''--now in paperback!

See more nutrition slideshows Click here to to redeem your SparkPoints
  You will earn 5 SparkPoints

Member Comments on this Slideshow

(scroll to end to leave a comment)


2/20/2013 10:44:56 AM

Look, the best way to lose weight is to find out what works for you and then do it! For some people watching calories works. Great do it. I am a carnivore. I love meat!!! I'm also not much of a dessert person. So after some research, I knew that the best diet (eating choice) would be a low carb diet. I know a lot of people frown on it but as of last week, I lost 60 lbs. I eat regular bacon and eggs for breakfast and fried foods (as long as I don't bread them) I just had my check up because my dr was convinced that with that diet, my cholesterol would be thru the roof. My cholesterol went down from 235 to 159 and the high cholesterol was the hdl not the ldl. The trick is that I pair my meats with non starchy veggies and greens. Best thing to do is figure out how you like to eat and then find an eating plan that is consistant with your eating style. You'll lose weight in no time and you'll be happy during it. For those wondering, I started in August of 2012 and as Feb of 2013 I lost 60lbs.


2/20/2013 9:37:54 AM

SHIELDAC's SparkPage


2/20/2013 8:51:17 AM

JAVAQUEEN74's SparkPage
Whole, natural foods are ALWAYS the best way to go! Thank you for not pushing the fat-free, which is laden with artificial ingredients!


2/20/2013 8:27:20 AM

WOUBBIE's SparkPage
Very refreshing read for a change! WHole food is not particularly low fat, and whole food is what we should all be eating.

The feeling of "satiety" has not much to do with the feeling of "fullness". One is biochemical, the other is physical. You can fill up on chips but still be grazing because your body didn't actually get what it wanted. As a society the low-fat/no-fat craze has been disastrous for our collective health. Any time you take the natural fat out of food you have to replace it with some kind of processed carb or chemical.


2/20/2013 4:53:08 AM

I agree with you all excellent article. I have been eating natural whole foods for a few years now. I never buy mayo or bottled salad dressings. I use a bit of olive oil, lemon juice, and either wine vinegar or balsamic vinegar as a base and add some spices. Making your own Taco spice mix etc is easy and preservatve/ sugar free as well. I find food tastes better, I don't have tummy troubles (from the preservatives and sugar) and I feel much more satisfied. The added benefit is I actually feel good which makes it much easier to exercise.


2/16/2013 5:08:27 PM

All I ever see in the comments anymore is people basically saying, no you're wrong, teh internetz told me I can eat sticks of salted lard and be okay, and that's way easier.

Annoying to say the least.


2/16/2013 12:07:20 PM

Thank you, thank you. My chiropractor has been telling me this for years and it's made a huge difference in my health. One reason I haven't been following SP meal planner is because there were too many fat free this and artificial sweetener that ...I just went with good fats and stayed within my calorie range. I hope your meal planner begins to reflect this data and we all shall be healthier for it! Thank you again.


2/16/2013 11:38:01 AM

SUGARSMOM2's SparkPage
fiber helps fill you up[ so you eat less food and it helps keep you feeling fuller longer . . I loe to place a platter of veggies cut and ready to eat though out the day when i feel like snacking .


2/16/2013 6:25:51 AM

CHARMIAN2's SparkPage
Great info


2/7/2013 11:11:52 PM

MSROZZIE's SparkPage
Excellent slide show. Lots of great information!


2/7/2013 9:34:26 PM

NLF2014's SparkPage
I whole heartedly agree with this article. If you buy the fat free, light, and no sugar added, take a look at those chemicals on the ingredients list. NOT something I want my family eating.I used to think this was a healthy option but not anymore. I'm trying to buy food with out all those horrible chemicals such as..msg, high fructose corn syrup, etc. But this as close to make as possible and don't follow fad diets and destructive weight loss programs that are full of a bunch of baloney.


2/7/2013 7:28:07 PM

USFGIRL11's SparkPage
I most definitely agree with eating fat-free foods is not very healthy, and if you look at the nutrition label, most of the time the real stuff is only 5 calories more....I used to buy reduced-fat Mayo and I can't stand it! When I want a tuna sandwich, I want REAL Mayo!! So I spoon it out with a measuring spoon and most of the time, I only need 1 serving to make my tuna. :) It makes me happier too!


2/7/2013 6:11:05 PM

TUBLADY's SparkPage
In the beginning i tried many fat free and low or reduced fat foods. Not any more. I prefer to eat real foods. Not altered in any way. My body responds better too. I eat everything in moderation. I plan the fats, sugars, and what little carbs I eat that are starchy. But most of my carbs come from fruit and veggies. I don't follow the idea that you have to have starch grains, potatoes, pasta with meals. I workout, lift weights, jog, and I don't need to load up on carbs. I do eat protein with each meal. I also eat smaller meals, 5,6 times a day.
There are so many eating plans that people swear by. I say eat what ever you feel comfortable with. And healthy success and fit life for all.


2/7/2013 5:52:47 PM

I bought a bottle of the fat-free cesar salad dressing from La Madeleine's because I was so impressed with it when I had it in the restuarant - but it didn't taste the same at home (not sure if this is because there's preservatives added to the bottled stuff or because what I had in the restuarant WASN'T actually the fat free version of the dressing, which is what I ordered). Anyway, next time I think I'll remember what was said here about certain vitamins needing a little fat to help process them and either buy the full fat version or make my own.


2/7/2013 2:26:25 PM

good message

Comment Pages (4 total)

x Lose 10 Pounds by July 5! Sign up with Email Sign up with Facebook
By clicking one of the above buttons, you're indicating that you have read and agree to SparkPeople's Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy and that you're at least 18 years of age.