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5 Bits of Nutrition Advice You Should Stop Following

Have you noticed how almost everyone around has suddenly become a pro at giving nutrition advice? Your neighbor, your trainer at the gym, and every blog on the internet? Here is our professional take on some nutrition advice that you should stop following. 

Only Shop the Perimeter
This is probably the oldest advice out there, but it’s not so accurate! Yes, it’s telling you to get your food from the outer aisles of the supermarket where fresh food is usually there, but this is also telling you to avoid the aisles where nuts, brown rice, whole-wheat pasta, olive oil, and other healthy products are found. Not only are these products healthy, but they also have a long shelf-life as well, so you can buy them and stock them at home to make sure you always have healthy food around the house. 

Switch to Sea Salt to Cut Back on Sodium
Sea salt and regular table salt have almost the same amount of sodium by weight and both can cause hypertension; a health issue that can be resolved by losing only 5% of your weight. But you probably hear this advice often because sea salt usually has larger granules than regular salt, which results in fitting less in a teaspoon; but in reality, an equal quantity swap won’t affect your sodium intake. 

Stay Away From Bananas, They Contain Too Much Sugar
This is simply not true. A medium banana contains about the same amount of sugar as a medium apple or pear. Bananas are not too costly and they are available everywhere; the fructose in bananas is a natural sugar. If you want to cut down on sugar, it’s probably best to avoid food and drinks that contain added sugars, like sweetened drinks for example.

Don’t Eat White Foods
This is true if we’re talking about switching from white bread and pasta to whole grain; but avoiding white foods like white potatoes, onions or cauliflower does not make sense at all. These vegetables are packed with nutrients and vitamins that are good for your health.

Stop Eating Gluten
Suddenly everyone has become gluten-intolerant. Yes, there are people who need a gluten-free diet, like those with celiac disease, or those who have a gluten sensitivity, but for the rest of the population, gluten isn’t harmful. Gluten is what helps bread rise and makes pizza crust chewy, and gluten-containing grains like breads and pastas supply fiber and other key nutrients. Plus, following a gluten-free lifestyle is not an easy thing, so there’s no need to do it unless you really need to, especially that some food can sound healthy but it actually isn’t. 

Christelle Bedrossian
Dietitian-Nutritionist
Beirut, Lebanon

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Dietitian Christelle Bedrossian

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