Debunking Food Myths: 7 Mainstream Nutrition Myths

  • By RRC
  • 20 Jul, 2017
In the last decade, nutrition, health, and wellness have become a huge topic of discussion, and everyone seems to have a different opinion on what is best for overall health, well-being, and weight loss! But how much of this information is rooted in fact? Between vilified foods, strict diets, and excessive exercise regimes, it’s hard to decipher what is valuable nutritional information , and what is mainstream nonsense. Here are several “facts” from mainstream nutrition that you should reconsider:
1. “I can eat as much as I want, as long as it’s healthy!”
Sure- avocados, oatmeal, nut butters, and savoury sweet trail mixes are indeed healthy… but they are still high in calories! Eating 200 calories of oatmeal is far better than eating 200 calories of a sleeve of Oreos, but that doesn’t mean you should eat whatever you want! The most important thing to remember: Nutritious or not, portion size counts with every food. If you find it hard to measure or track your caloric intake, or sticking to reasonable portion sizes, look for portion-controlled packages and prepared meals .
2. “Red meat is unhealthy, and the cause of many health problems and heart diseases!”
Red meat and beef in particular, is the number 1 vilified protein because of it’s saturated fat content. But the problem with red meat is actually the extent to which North Americans are eating it, more so than the meat itself. The key is “every thing in moderation,” to see the benefits of this protein! Red meat can actually aid with weight loss, decrease inflammation, and boost energy when consumed 2-3 times per week. Red meat  is chalked full of omega-3 fatty acids (good for insulin resistance, and helps carry fat out of the body), and iron- which will boost the power and intensity of your workouts, and aid your metabolism.
3. “All fat makes you fat.”
This is one of the silliest myths out there- your body needs dietary fat to lose weight and for the body to function properly! It’s why many fats are called “essential.” Many people opt for “low-fat” products, mistakenly thinking they are “health foods.” The problem is, these foods taste horrible with the fat removed, so manufacturers add tons of sugar instead to make “low fat” snacks tasty. Large amounts of sugar is far more harmful than naturally occurring fats! Fat helps you absorb vitamins and nutrients, provide a boost of energy, and is vital for proper functioning of the nerves and brain. Instead of cutting fat, choose “good” fats. These can include things like olive oil while making meals, some avocado in your salad, a handful of nuts for a snack, or adding peanut butter to your morning smoothie!
4. “Brown eggs are better for you than white eggs”
Who came up with this one? Eggs are an amazing source of fat and protein, especially if you’re vegetarian ! The nutritional values are the exact same for white and brown egg shells. It turns out the color of the eggshell is a question of the hen’s genetics, and actually has nothing to do with the nutritional value.
5. “Canned and frozen vegetables are stripped of all their nutrients, and aren’t good for you.”
Never fear- research has debunked this myth, and canning and freezing vegetables actually retains most of their nutrients! In fact, canning or freezing can actually preserve some nutrients, and the content of vitamins actually decreases during normal refrigeration. Additionally, frozen fruits and vegetables are often frozen at the point of harvest, meaning that they preserve their nutrients. Many “fresh” foods may have been in storage for days or even weeks before they make it to supermarket shelves. Looking to save a little cash?  Frozen and canned food is usually a little more economical too!
6. “Diet soda and Splenda in my coffee will reduce my sugar intake and keep me slim!”
Unfortunately, this is not the case. Artificial sweeteners used in soda’s and in Splenda packets- aspartame and sucralose, to name a few- lead to huge urges and cravings later on in the day. Studies show that more overweight/obese adults drink soda than healthy-weight adults, and of these overweight individuals studied, those who consume diet soda also eat far more calories than those who consume normal/sweetened soda. The bottom line: avoid soda in general, and cut out those artificial sweeteners!
7. “Foods labelled as “Natural” are better for you”
Unfortunately, the word “natural” is not defined by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and can mean just about anything. Even products labeled “all natural” can be highly processed and contain high fructose corn syrup, a manufactured sugar that some researchers think is a contributor to the spike in obesity. The word “organic”? Now that’s regulated by the USDA and means the food is made without most conventional pesticides, synthetic fertilizers, growth hormones, and antibiotics.
Are there any food trends that you’d like to know more about? Let us know what you think!

The Personal Gourmet Blog

By RRC 17 Aug, 2017
After exercise and some intense calorie-burning, it is extremely important to replenish your body with the proper nutrients so that your body and muscles can recover. Here are the top 5 snacks to have after a sweaty session on the treadmill:
By RRC 15 Aug, 2017

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes

Serves 6

By RRC 10 Aug, 2017

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 12 minutes

Serves 4


INGREDIENTS

  • 12oz raw shrimp, peeled and deveined, and tail removed
  • 8 oz cleaned squid cut into rings
  • 12 mussels, scrubbed 
  • 8 oz linguini 
  • 1 cup thinly sliced red onion 
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced red bell pepper 
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced zucchini
  • 3 tbsp olive oil, and 1 tbsp
  • 3 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tsp minced fresh garlic
  • 1 tsp hot chili sauce, or to taste
  • 1/3 cup chopped cilantro
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat the oven to 425ºF. Line a baking sheet with foil and spray with cooking oil. 
  2. Place the shrimp, squid and mussels on the prepared baking sheet. Roast for 8 minutes, or until the mussels open. Remove from the oven and keep covered.
  3. While the seafood roasts, cook the linguini in boiling water until al dente, about 8 minutes. Drain, reserving 2 Tbsp of the pasta water for the sauce. Set aside.
  4. While the pasta cooks, spray a large non-stick skillet with cooking oil, add the 2tsp of olive oil and place over medium heat. Add the onion, bell pepper and zucchini; stir-fry for 4 minutes, just until the vegetables begin to soften. Add the seafood, pasta, the final tbsp. of olive oil, reserved pasta water, lemon juice, garlic, chili sauce, cilantro, salt and pepper. Toss well and serve. 

Nutritional Analysis per Serving (1/4 of the recipe)

  • Calories 491 
  • Protein 32 g 
  • Fat 17 g 
  • Saturated Fat 2.5 g 
  • Carbohydrates 52 g 
  • Cholesterol 230 mg 
  • Sodium 379 mg 
  • Fiber 3.4 g 

By RRC 09 Aug, 2017
Ingredients
  • 1 cup of flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup chocolate chips
  • 2 tbsp milk
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup raw kale (or spinach), woody stalks discarded

Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 325 F.
  2. In a food processor, blend kale until extremely fine.
  3. Combine all dry ingredients in a medium bowl, then stir in remaining wet ingredients, as well as the kale, to form a dough. The dough will seem dry at first but will loosen up. **Add 1 additional tbsp milk of choice only if needed
  4. Roll the dough into balls. Place on a cookie tray, and bake 11 minutes. They will appear underdone, but leave them out to cool for 10 minutes, in which they will settle.
By RRC 31 Jul, 2017

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Bake Time: 14 minutes

Serves 12

By RRC 20 Jul, 2017
In the last decade, nutrition, health, and wellness have become a huge topic of discussion, and everyone seems to have a different opinion on what is best for overall health, well-being, and weight loss! But how much of this information is rooted in fact? Between vilified foods, strict diets, and excessive exercise regimes, it’s hard to decipher what is valuable nutritional information , and what is mainstream nonsense. Here are several “facts” from mainstream nutrition that you should reconsider:
By RRC 14 Jul, 2017

Makes 4 servings

Preparation time 20 minutes • Cooking time 16 minutes

  • 12 oz (375 g) diced boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 3 Tbsp (45 mL) all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp (10 mL) vegetable oil
  • 11/3 cups (335 mL) chopped onion
  • 2/3 cup (160 mL) diced carrots
  • 2 cups (500 mL) diced mushrooms
  • 3/4 cup (185 mL) diced red bell pepper
  • 2/3 cup (160 mL) diced water chestnuts
  • 1/2 cup (125 mL) diced green onions
  • 1/3 cup (80 mL) chopped cilantro

Hoisin Sauce

  • 1/2 cup (125 mL) Hoisin Sauce, divided
  • 8 large Boston lettuce leaves
  • 2 tsp (10 mL) sesame seeds
  1. Dust the chicken with the flour and sauté in a skillet sprayed with vegetable oil just until cooked. Alternatively, these can also be grilled on the BBQ! Set aside when cooked through.
  2. In a large nonstick skillet sprayed with vegetable spray, heat the oil then sauté the onions for 5 minutes or just tender and fragrant. Add the carrots and mushrooms and sauté for another 8 minutes until tender, with no moisture left from the mushrooms. Add the red pepper and sauté for 3 minutes. Add the chicken, water chestnuts, green onions and cilantro.
  3. Add half of the Hoisin Sauce to the chicken mixture.
  4. Serve the chicken mixture with the lettuce and the remaining sauce on the side. Garnish with sesame seeds.

***Tips: Make ahead prepare the entire dish early in the day. Reheat gently in a skillet just before serving.

Nutrition information (per serving)

  • Calories 262
  • Carbohydrates 31.4 g
  • Fibre 4.1 g
  • Protein 21.3 g
  • Total fat 6.7 g
  • Saturated fat 0.9 g
  • Cholesterol 45 mg
  • Sodium 525 mg
By RRC 11 Jul, 2017

The warm weather has (mercifully) arrived and if you are anything like us, your mind has turned to planning summer vacation. Summer is in full-swing and so are barbecues, patio drinks, and frozen cocktails. If you feel like you are falling off the wagon, you’re not alone! There are ways to maintain a healthy lifestyle, without compromising all the fun activities that come with summer vacation! Here are our best tips on how to have fun, but also continue to look and feel your best this summer.

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