5 Big, Fat Diet Myths--Busted!

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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!

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Member Comments on this Slideshow

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2/27/2013 6:42:13 PM

BOHNYS's SparkPage
Great article. Thanks!


2/27/2013 1:36:33 PM

Just remember when cutting back and not counting them you are in danger of not eating enough calories. You just don't want to fall to low with your intake so your body doesn't try to compinsate by slowing down


2/27/2013 12:33:49 PM

ROBB1N's SparkPage
Great information!


2/27/2013 12:33:27 PM

ROBB1N's SparkPage
Great information!


2/27/2013 11:58:58 AM

CLAYLADY001's SparkPage
Weight loss is difficult and I decided to cut back on calories but not count them.I eat everything I alway ate BUT less of it,know I should be counting something but to lazy to bother.I too love meat and have found that just cutting back on my usual amounts that I can eat anything I want.Sometimes I blow it but usually manage to lose at least 1/2lb.per week.Now I want to lose a little more so will cut back calories a little bit more.Love mexican food but have cut that back to about once a month.It works for me.I do exercise everyday 7 days a week although half on sundays.Today will have lunch with my brother in law at Applebees and try not to blow it but if I eat more than I should I simply call that my meal of the day and eat very lightly in the eve,if at all.I do need to lose weight,am now 70yrs.old and my sister has mentioned that carrying extra weight around is not smart and as we age we should try to keep our calories under control.I am doing pretty good my sister is doing great!
My husband has lost quite a bit of weight so it is time for me to get serious.
My girlfriend said try cooking with more turkey meat so I have,it is OK but still miss my grd.beef so will buy some of that soon,I do eat a lot of homemade soups with lots of fresh veges.Anyway good luck to all of you and have a fun filled day.CLinOregon


2/23/2013 10:02:34 PM

Since I've gone on my low carb diet in December 2012 I have lost 17lbs eating meat, vegetables, full fat salad dressing, and 50g of carbs a day. I'm usually not hungry, but if I find that I have been hungry between meals for a day, I'll have a meat -only lunch and then I'm satisfied for a long time. I avoid high fructose corn syrup, watch my carbs, and I read every label. Yet, I still manage to have an ounce and a half of dark chocolate at bed time every night and I look forward to it.


2/20/2013 9:07:06 PM

MSLADYBUG3's SparkPage
Good tips and info.


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 .

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