5 Diet and Exercise Myths

We all want to live healthy lives, but knowing the best practices for diet and exercise can be tricky when there are so many mixed messages out there. Plenty of faulty sources claim certain eating habits or exercises work when they simply do not. To help sort out fact from fiction, we’ve listed some of the most common fitness myths, explained why they are inaccurate, and added a few tips along the way.

Abdominal Workouts Will Reduce Belly Fat

Regardless of how many crunches and ab workouts you do, you won’t see any definition if you aren’t eliminating the belly fat covering those muscles. Your abs are made through healthy decisions in the kitchen, along with fat-burning workouts. Eating healthy foods, like fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins will help cut belly fat, as will cardio workouts. While crunches can help build the muscles in your abdominal region, those muscles won’t show through until you burn away the outer layers of fat.

Lifting Weights Will Make You Bulky

Many women forgo weight workouts because they believe it will lead to bulky, big muscles. The truth is, it takes a lot to bulk up, including dietary changes and natural hormone balances. The female body isn’t naturally made to be bulky, and adding weight lifting into you normal workout routine won’t immediately add volume to your muscles. If you wish to increase muscle size, you need to add more protein to your diet and make a number of other changes.

Studies have shown that weight training once a week can help speed up your metabolism and make it easier for your body to burn fat, even when you aren’t working out.

If You Work Out, You Can Eat Whatever You Want

Some people use working out to justify eating whatever they want; however, this line of thinking doesn’t hold up. Just because you work out, does not mean it makes up for whatever unhealthy things you eat or drink. In fact, when you work out it is even more important that you eat healthier in order to provide your body with the fuel it needs to sustain the energy it’s burning. Doing one does not make up for the other, and focusing on both a healthy diet and a solid workout routine can improve your overall health.

If You’re Not Sweating, You’re Not Burning Fat

A good workout doesn’t need to make you sweat. Sweating is the body’s natural way to cool itself, and while you may sweat during a good exercise, you can certainly get a good workout without much sweating. For example, walking for 30 minutes can burn up to 400 calories and likely won’t cause you to break a sweat.

Cutting Carbs Will Help You Lose Weight

While this myth does have some truth to it, you should not cut out all carbohydrates from your diet in order to lose weight. There are two different types of carbs, simple and complex. Simple carbs are often found in cookies or candies, and they lack much in the way of nutrition. Complex carbs, on the other hand, like whole-wheats, beans, and fruits, hold more nutritional value. Cutting out simple carbs can certainly be beneficial and could help you lose weight, but complex help supply your body with necessary nutrients.

This article contains general information about medical conditions and treatments. The information is not advice and should not be treated as such. The information is not intended to replace the advice or diagnosis of a physician. If you have any specific questions about any medical matter you should consult your doctor or other professional healthcare providers.