Do you ever feel like there is too much to worry about when eating healthy?
Are you the person that gets so stressed out about health that you go on a binge?
Here are 10 things we mistakenly worry about when trying to eat healthy.
You Worry About…
- Macronutrient Ratios:
What percentage carbs, fats and proteins should I be eating? This is one of those factors that many people stress about and that many books harp on. The problem is, we eat food – not macronutrients. It is difficult to calculate this in the first place.
In the second place, you can eat healthfully eating a varying spectrum of ratios. It also depends on how many calories you are eating. As an example, 30% protein may be too little for someone who eats only 1000 calories but would be too much for someone eating 5000 calories.
- Taking a Multivitamin:
The multivitamin issue is perplexing. What should be a safe way to fill in nutritional gaps is now being questioned in light of recent studies. For example, those who took a multi more than 7 times a week were almost twice as likely to die of prostate cancer as those who didn’t take a multi.
Multivitamins are not miracle pills that they are promoted as, taking a good quality multi every day or every second day is still alright – just don’t overdo it on the folic acid.
- Drinking Coffee:
The ultra-clean living condemn coffee for its lack of nutrients, its negative impact on calcium absorption, its assault on the adrenal glands and its dehydration superpowers. To this point, most of the research has exonerated coffee for most of its charges.
Moderate amounts (barring 7 packets of sugar) seem to have health benefits.
- 8 Glasses of water:
This one was covered in detail in a previous post. The truth is, most people probably should drink more water.
There is no evidence, however that we need the dogmatically-engrained 8 glasses. Drink more if you are exercising more and even more when in heat (ahem – hot weather, that is).
- Bicep Curls:
Visit any gym and you’ll inevitably see “bicep guy”. You know the one – the guy who dedicates 2 days a week to just bicep training. Barbells, dumbbells, cables, close grip, wide grip, hammer curls.
If your biceps are bigger than your quads, something is wrong. If you are training for a body building competition, by all means, work those guns. If not, do something more compound that works other muscles as well.
- Fat count:
I’m not sure if anyone is still worried about this or not, but if you are – don’t.
Look for trans fat and too much omega-6 fats, but don’t stress too much about fat grams.
- Net Carbs:
Again, not sure if anyone still busts out their scientific calculator when reading carb ingredients, but again – don’t sweat it.
Make healthy, fiber-rich and nutrient-dense carb choices and burn ’em or wear ’em.
- Eating After 6pm:
Pssst… your body doesn’t tell time!
Okay, there is good reason not to pound home 1000 calories before you hit the pillow, but “rules” about not eating after an arbitrary time are baseless. If you are ravenous before bed – eat. Just eat something higher in protein.
A nighttime workout also negates this rule – just be smart about it.
- Eating Organic:
Admittedly, eating organic is probably optimal.
The idea of having no pesticides in your produce is more enticing than having very few pesticides in your produce.
If you’re going to worry about something, however, worry about getting enough veggies and fruits first. Worry about whether it is organic, local, etc after. You can also go in between and choose organic on the most heavily sprayed crops.
- Artificial Sweeteners:
If you have the occasional pinch of splenda or have a periodic sugar-free mint – you probably won’t keel over.
Rather than Geiger-counting your way through ingredient lists, just bear in mind that artificial sweetener-containing foods aren’t usually healthy to begin with – regardless of how they are sweetened.
On the other side of the coin – artificial sweeteners won’t likely help you lose weight.