From ditching gluten unnecessarily to opting for low-fat foods, there are a lot of untruths surrounding healthy eating. This misinformed advice can not only cloud your judgment, it can actually prevent you from getting healthy at all. To clarify things, we asked four doctors to reveal the diet myths they think need busting:
Myth one: Restriction gets you results
NHS weight loss surgeon and founder of Vavista Life Dr Sally Norton says: 'The biggest myth out there is that low fat, low carbohydrate, low calorie, or any other food restriction diets, are a good option for sustainable weight loss – it's just not true. Our bodies were designed for a wide variety of fresh, unprocessed foods and that's the most important thing to focus on. There is no wonder-food, super-diet or magic-pill that will miraculously lead to weight-loss. It's just about building sustainable healthier eating habits and moving more.
Myth two: Meat makes you gain weight
Dr Gil Jenkins, advisor to the Health Supplements Information Service (HSIS) says:'I get annoyed when people say meat is bad for you, as we are natural omnivores. When eating meat, keep it fresh and lean, have a variety, don't fry the meat and don't cook to the point of charring. As we get older we need protein to keep our muscle bulk up in order to prevent falls and frailty. Lean meat is a good, digestible source of protein and iron, plus other minerals.'
Myth three: You have to make huge changes to see results
Dr Ashton Harper, nutrition and gastrointestinal diseases specialist and Bio-Kult expert says:'The best diet is one where there is a concerted and manageable shift in behaviour, such as not having 'junk food' and trying to eat smaller portions of food, without limiting the actual variety of ingredients.
Myth four: What works for one person will work for another
Dr Daniel Jones, director of vitamin supplements company Revive Active says:'People need to be sceptical of new trends in the diet food industry, unless it's backed by lots of great, well carried out most important thing to keep in mind is that nutrition isn't one-size-fits-all. Every individual is unique, with a unique physiology that responds in its own way to nutritional stimuli. View it as an investment in your health, feeling and wellbeing and look to find what works for you.'