Between all of the different fad diets out there, one thing’s for certain — you’re going to hear a lot of information about nutrition that isn’t entirely correct. Like that carbs are bad for you (they’re not). Or that losing weight can slow down your metabolism. Alex Thomas, the founder of the Sports Nutrition Association has seen everything when it comes to misleading nutrition information. We interviewed him to find out which nutrition myths he hears most often — he debunks a few below. Here are the top ones that he hears all the time which seem normal, but actually are not. Keep reading to learn more!
Common Nutrition Myths That Seem Normal but Totally Aren’t
1) Your body and only consume 30g of protein in one sitting
Your body and digest 50 plus grams of protein in a sitting. There are even subjects who were fed 300 grams of protein a day. across four sittings, which comes to approximately 75 grams per meal and it did not affect them negatively. So if someone tells you your body can only digest 30g at a protein store, you don’t need to believe them. You may experience some extra blunting if you eat excess protein, but that won’t really make a difference to your health.
2) Protein is bad for your kidneys and ages you
The other one is the claim that protein is bad for your kidneys and ages you. That’s not the case. That was observed in insects. When you look at humans who are in fact close in biology to dogs than insects, as humans have 23 chromosomes and canines have 39, you can see why that research is somewhat irrelevant to us at this stage. The acid and enzymes in a dog’s digestive system are over 100 times stronger than humans which is why they can eat raw meat and not get salmonella poisoning, so when we observe things in nature it gives us clues. But when we observe things in an insect and few things are similar between us, that doesn’t really mean it directly relates to humans.
High protein diets also won’t age you. You may start to look aged if you were only eating protein and nothing else because you would be missing a lot of essential multivitamins and antioxidants, but if you are eating a balanced diet, that should promote better health.
3) When you lose weight, your metabolism slows down
It is true that when you diet and lose weight, your metabolism does slow down. But this reduction is very small, like less than some berries or raisins a day. People doubling down on that saying that this is your new metabolism and you need to maintain and manage are incorrect, and missing another contributing factor associated with dieting. Typically when you diet your metabolism will slow down. However, your basal metabolic rate does so very minimally (like 5 calories per kg or losing 10 kgs eating 50 fewer calories, which is a few berries). What is happening that is causing plateaus or the ‘slowing down of your metabolism is that because you are in a calorie deficit, you have less energy available and be less energetic than you would otherwise be, and this carries over into the activity and movement we do both consciously and subconsciously.
For example, you may still go to the gym and for a walk every day, but due to having less energy, you may not get up as much during the workday, or subconsciously fidget less and learn more rather than sit or stand with good posture. Remember, our bodies are designed to maintain where we are at so they will do little things that stall your weight loss and that may feel like your metabolism has slowed, or you may notice that you plateau a bit in your weight loss, but the majority of the time you haven’t, you’re just moving less as an adaptation to eating less.
4) Our metabolism slows down with age
This is again coming back to physical activity. Ie I could eat this in high school but can’t eat it now. This is because your physical environment has changed. You were walking to classes and playing sport. Now you have a desk job and you are not playing sports. You are also getting 4000 steps a day and going to the gym 2 to 3 days a week. We see this with pro athletes all the time when they retire too. It is a lack of physical activity that their body was used to compared to their new norm. With that in mind, your metabolism will actually only start to decline around the age of 55 to 65. Sorry to break it to you, but your metabolism is close to the same in your 30s as it was in your 20s. The difference is that your life and responsibilities are now different.