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Myths Busted! Eggs, Coconut Oil, And More

"Superfood" is a catchy phrase coined by the food industry to sell more products off the shelves. But most of these are just health fads at best or misleading concepts at worst.

Then how do you judge what to eat and what to avoid?

The Journal of American College of Cardiology published an extensive article sometime last year, which set the record straight on most of these supposed superfoods. So here are all the myths and facts associated with these "much-loved" food items.

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Too Many Eggs Are Bad For Your Health

Eggs hit the limelight when the American Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee announced in 2015 that there was no significant relationship between dietary cholesterol and blood cholesterol levels. After all, egg yolks are known to be packed in cholesterol.

Unfortunately, what the media failed to report was the last bit of this announcement - that people should still limit their dietary cholesterol intake.

This is because while blood cholesterol is directly linked to the serum concentration of saturated and trans fats in your diet, too much dietary cholesterol can still cause an increase in your total and LDL cholesterol levels.

So if you like eggs, we recommend you restrict to eating a maximum of 4 every week.

The Coconut Oil Controversy

Coconut oil quickly climbed the ladder to success in the healthy oil category after Asians claimed that it was the secret behind their slim physiques. But enough researchers have now proven without a doubt that this oil is in fact very harmful to your health.

It's because coconut oil is rich in saturated fatty acids, which are known to increase your risk of cardiovascular accidents.

So if you were indulging yourself with this oil, it's time to switch to a healthier kind, like extra virgin olive oil or corn oil.

Antioxidant Supplements Are Not Good

"Don't like to eat fruits and vegetables? Have antioxidant supplements, instead." That's the message marketers used to sell this new product. After all, antioxidants are great for the body. So imagine how awesome it would be to have a more concentrated dose of it without the hassle of cutting up a fruit or cooking some vegetables!

Unfortunately, that message is widely misleading. Why? Because various studies have shown that consuming fresh fruits and veggies is the best way you can up your antioxidant level and reduce your risk of cardiovascular events, while supplements do not have any such effect on your body.

So stop wasting your money on expensive supplements, and hit the grocery store instead.

Nuts Are Good...In Moderation

Extensive researches show that nuts of all kinds are great at reducing the risk of heart diseases. But since they are quite calorie-dense, it's advisable to actually have them in moderation (just 1 fistful).

A Liquid Diet

You are not doing yourself any favors by switching to a liquid diet because the research on this subject is sparse and inconclusive. So until we have more substantial facts on this subject, it's best to stick to a solid diet with a balanced quantity of macro and micronutrients.

Juicing fruits and vegetables is a good idea only if you are unable to eat these on a regular basis.

A Gluten-Free Diet For Non-Sensitives

While a gluten-free diet is extremely important for those suffering from celiac disease or gluten sensitivity, it is not a great idea for those who do not have this problem. Why? Because these claims are not based in reality.

So steer clear of a gluten-free diet if you have a gut that can digest gluten. This will protect you from nutrient deficiencies.

    Story first published: Monday, March 12, 2018, 13:00 [IST]
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