Myth busters

Only one phrase seems appropriate to start off this post: TGIF.

Although this week hasn’t been particularly stressful, this year kind of has been. I’m ready for a summer that involves me staying in the United States for the majority of the time.

I’m also excited to have more time in the morning to prepare my breakfasts. Don’t get me wrong, I l-o-v-e peanut butter and oatmeal. Still, I look forward to mixing it up.

Until then…

Consumed: 1/3 C oats cooked with 2/3 C water, stirred with 1/2 a thinly sliced banana and topped with peanut butter and fruit spread.

I’m also looking forward to eating lunch at home or having more time to pack it. More than anything else, a rushed morning results in a pathetic lunch. Case and point: today. I was running behind schedule this morning, so I went with my go-to lunch of a bar, piece of fruit and cup of yogurt.

The only problem was that my stomach was grumbling like no other all morning. Guess the interval workout I did for my running class worked up an appetite!

I held off on eating for a while, but gave into the temptation around 11:30. I was in the quiet section of the library and nothing’s worse than making stressed out students even more upset — which I also learned today when we a fire alarm went off in the library, forcing everyone to go outside into the rain. Yeah, it was awesome.

Back to lunch. I downed it in 10 minutes flat. Then, needing to get out of the library (on my own freewill, rather than at the fire alarm’s insistence), I met up with Dan to go to his hall for lunch. Obviously I had just eaten, but I was still kind of hungry, so I had an additional small bowl of whole-wheat cereal.

After second-lunch, I went back up to campus for my final class of the day. It was exciting to get out and realize that in one week’s time, I’d be all done with classes! I’m kind of excited.

With class done, I headed back home to clean myself up. Lately, Dan and I have enjoyed going out a little bit on Thursday nights. His Friday classes are easy and mine are nonexistent, so we don’t have to be too concerned about things like sleep.

Today we took advantage of matanee prices for the movie “Hanna.” I wasn’t too sure what to expect, but thought it looked interesting…

Without giving anything away, it was a pretty decent storyline to follow and had a good amount of action. I’d recommend it as a rental.

The only problem with the movie time was that I was starving when it got out. (What’s with me being so hungry today?)

Dan to the rescue!

He’s a pro at omelettes.

Consumed: Two egg omelette with mushrooms and some cheddar cheese.

And, it’s hard to go wrong with waffles.

Especially when they’re covered with peanut butter and jelly.

Wait, did I just contradict the beginning of this post? Whoops.

Friday Fragments: This is a spin-off from a class assignment I recently worked on. The task was to debunk a health myth, so one of the first topics that came to mind was the craziness that is the low-fat diet.

An overview of the topic is pretty well summarized by a certain Washington Post article. Here are my thoughts…

“Fat.” The word is practically synonymous with “unhealthy.” So, isn’t it logical that a low-fat diet would be the way to go? Not so fast, say nutritionists and medical experts.

The low-fat craze first swept the country in the 1980s. Within the following decades, hundreds of new low-fat products were created. But, what they lacked in fat, they made up for in added sugars and unpronounceable ingredients. Therefore, there were few, if any, real nutritional benefits.

In fact, a recent eight-year study of 50,000 women showed that low-fat diets have no significant health benefits. Although the women had slightly lower levels of “bad” cholesterol and blood pressure, their risk of heart attack, stroke and heart disease remained the same.

“Based on our findings, we cannot recommend that most women should follow a low-fat diet,” said Jacques Rossouw of the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, which conducted the study.

Rather than attempting to cut all fat from diets, nutritionists are now recommending that people monitor certain kinds of harmful fats, such as saturated fats from red meat and trans fats from processed foods. People should also pay more attention to the total number of calories they consume, rather than simply fixating on the fat count.

Another negative of the low-fat diet is that it slashes all kinds of fat, including monounsaturated and polyunsaturated, which are actually healthful. These fats can be found naturally in foods such as avocados, fish and olive oil.

What do you think?


5 responses to “Myth busters

  • Jess

    I definitely don’t believe in low fat. I think our bodies need it, and I agree with monitoring “bad fats.” I’m with ya on looking forward to summer!

  • Meghan @ StruggleMuffins

    Man oh man, I don’t know what I’d do without a fat-heavy diet. I always think I should eat more carbs because I;m an active person, but ultimately my body craves fats, mostly in the form of nuts and nut butters, so I listen to it. With that in mind, I think macronutrient ratio is a very individual thing; some people thrive on a low fat diet, while others need a lot of fat and others fall somewhere in the middle. I’m certainly not loosening my grasp on the peanut butter jar anytime soon though, that’s for sure 🙂

  • Stephanie

    Yeah, I’d tend to believe that about the low-fat diet, especially after finishing In Defense of Food. I think it’s probably better to eat whole foods and real food over “low-fat” and “enhanced” foods, anyway. And they will pry the peanut butter out of my cold dead hands. =)

  • Jess

    I disagree with the whole “low fat” mentality!! Often times lower fat versions of the “real thing” are pumped full of extra sugar/artificial ingredients–yuck!

    Those omelets sound and look delicious!!

  • Errign

    I think that eliminating any one macro entirely is dangerous, because they all have their benefits (and downfalls) – its eating them appropriately that’s important!

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