[Last updated 14th August, 2018]
So many of us identify ourselves with what we eat.
Or more specifically, what we don’t eat.
Problem is the majority of diets, nutrition “cures” and “dangers” on social media are wrong (and stupid).
As a result we’re spending record amounts of money and time on health products and “hacks” that aren’t even healthier.
Fortunately I’ve come across many health experts on my new Instagram and Facebook page who are challenging this misinformation in an entertaining way… with nutrition memes!
Here’s an opportunity for you to consider the facts, or to share this with someone who should.
1. “Skinny” Foods Don’t Make You Healthier (Or Skinnier)
2. Organic Is Not Healthier
Source: Dr. Spencer
If there are any benefits of organic food, being healthier is not one of them.
In fact, organic is such a powerful marketing label that you can buy organic alcohol and organic cigarettes.
3. There Are No Fat-Burning Foods
When we talk about fat-burning, we’re referring to an increase in metabolic rate (the energy you burn at rest).
It’s true that caffeine can increase your metabolic rate in the short-term. In fact, even 500 ml of water can increase metabolic rate for half an hour (1, 2).
But these increases are so small and short-lived that they are biologically insignificant. In other words, the effect on losing weight is so minor that it’s unnoticeable.
I truly wish we could burn fat without any effort on our part, but fat loss doesn’t work like that.
Source: We Love GMO and Vaccines
“Advances in medicine and agriculture have saved vastly more lives than have been lost in all the wars in history.” – Carl Sagan.
5. Coconut Oil Is Fattening and Not Very Healthy
Source: Exposing Nutritional Quackery
Coconut oil is 100% fat and bursting with calories.
One tablespoon (13.6 grams) is 117 calories, which is equal to the calories in three oreo cookies, or half a Mars bar (3).
The health benefits of coconut oil have also been blown way out of proportion.
6. Sugar Is Not The Problem… It’s The Sugar + Fat Combo
When someone claims they’ve “quit sugar” they usually list foods such as ice cream, chocolate and cookies as examples.
But these foods are not just high in sugar. They’re also extremely high in fat (and therefore calories), which is why they are unhealthy in large amounts.
For example, 58% of the calories in Oreos come from carbs, but 38% come from fat (and 4% from protein) (4).
So fat is responsible for almost as many calories as the sugar. To only blame the sugar in junk food and not the fat is plain wrong.
7. Aspartame and Other “Toxic” Ingredients Are Safe
Source: Fitness Reloaded
Water is toxic too if you drink crazy large amounts.
In fact, people die from water intoxication (5, 6).
Always remember, the dose makes the poison.
8. All Diets Work In The Exact Same Way- They Cut Your Calorie Intake
Source: Myolean Fitness
The diets above all have completely different rules and restrictions, yet they can all work for weight loss.
This is because ultimately they all do the same thing… help you cut your total calorie intake, which is what weight loss comes down to.
The superior diet is the one you can stick to long term.
9. You Cannot Make Your Body More Alkaline
When people talk about becoming more alkaline, they’re referring to a diet that lowers the pH of your blood (making it more alkaline).
However, your body tightly regulates blood pH through your lungs and kidneys. Even small lasting changes will make you terribly sick and can even be fatal.
But this is actually a good thing… If our diet could significantly influence blood pH, we’d all be dead.
10. Vinegar Will Not Cure Your Belly Fat
Source: Dr. Spencer
Vinegar is extremely acidic.
It’s good for burning off warts, not body fat.
What’s more, it’s puzzling how many people consume vinegar yet eat to try and make their body alkaline…
11. Again, Your Diet Worked Because It Cut Calories
Source: Ben Carpenter
This fact is just so hard for people to accept, so it was worth repeating.
For example, you didn’t lose 20 lbs on the ketogenic diet just because you stopped eating “fattening” carbs. Carbs are not inherently fattening.
You lost 20 lbs because that new eating pattern helped you consistently eat fewer overall calories than you used to.
12. Lemon Water Is Tasty… Not Magical
Source: Fitness Reloaded
Lemon water is claimed to have various health benefits.
It’s not uncommon to experience better energy levels and maybe even weight loss if you begin to drink a lot of lemon water.
But the benefits come from the fact that you’re drinking more water… it has nothing to do with the lemon.
13. GMOs Are Not Dangerous
It’s true, your pet is a genetically modified organism (GMO).
The point though is that GMO foods are not dangerous. Zero people have died from GMOs, ever.
Much like organic, the war against genetically modified foods is a marketing exercise more than anything else.
Because do you know what sells better than sex? Fear.
14. Juicing Is Not Healthier
Fruit juice will never be superior to whole fruit.
The exception is if your juice is multiple serves of vegetables and only a dash of fruit… because let’s face it you won’t eat the vegetables otherwise.
Where possible always eat your calories rather than drink them.
15. Your Bulletproof Coffee Is Not Healthier
Source: Diet vs Disease
Coffee is delicious.
Butter is delicious.
But just because two things are delicious, doesn’t mean you should combine them.
The exception is vegemite and avocado.
16. One Last Time…
Source: Sohee Fit
17. Nutrition: It’s a Science, Not An Opinion
Share these nutrition memes with someone who doesn’t realize nutrition is a science, not an opinion.