Has Coronavirus Quarantine Put Your Healthy Diet on the Back Shelf? Here Are 4 Tips to Help You Choose Good Foods by Jonny Bowden
It’s no big surprise that some processed foods, such as boxed macaroni and cheese, have been enjoying a renaissance lately due to the coronavirus pandemic. People are stressed. Grocery prices are rising. And given all the confusing nutrition advice coming at us, surely someone … somewhere … has done a study that says sugary snacks are good for you. Yeah, not so fast. Step away from the toaster pastries.
Many high salt, high-carb comfort foods are only going to make you gain weight, feel worse and could ultimately damage your health. You’ll actually start feeling better and have more energy once you begin eating more nutritious foods.
But here’s the dilemma: When it comes to dietary advice, who do you believe?
Out-of-Date Dietary Advice
The dietary advice issued by various organizations is often a mix of old and new data. It’s not in line with what those of us who study this continually are telling people today. It takes way too long for some of these big organizations to incorporate the current scientific thinking into the mantras that they’ve been repeating for sometimes decades.
Another reason why it’s so hard to get a straight answer about foods is that they don’t fall into perfect categories. For example, some saturated fats are very healthy for you. And some unsaturated fats should be avoided at all costs!
Saturated fats such as ghee, palm oil, butter and coconut oil have been absolved of being bad for your health. Meanwhile, canola, sunflower, corn and soy are now known to be highly inflammatory.
So what should we be eating? Here are four tips for choosing what foods to include in your diet:
- Check your sources for all articles on health and nutrition. A single study should never be the basis of your nutritional decisions, because studies contradict each other all the time. And don’t buy into the infomercial stuff about “clinical studies” supporting the latest fat-burner. Those are usually done in someone’s office and not subject to any peer review.
- Wait for multiple studies, completed by reputable universities, confirming the same outcomes. And even then be aware of things like who funded the study and who benefits from the results. There may be no way to avoid commercial interests in scientific research, but at least it’s good to be aware of it.
- Be open to learning about ingredients you may want to add to your diet. For example, some people are hyper-focused on palm oil. They’d have you believe that it’s bad for you and the environment. They also are stuck in the old 1950s notion that “saturated fat is bad for you.” Both beliefs are wrong. Some countries – notably Malaysia – are passionately committed to the environment. The palm oil from Malaysia is sustainably produced. Real Malaysian palm oil is one of the healthiest cooking oils I know of. Malaysian palm oil is also a rich source of vitamin E tocotrienols which support heart and brain health. And heart health is a huge concern in this country! It’s also a nutritious replacement for trans fats.
- Eat real food. Food your great-grandmother would have recognized as food. Eat from what I call the "Jonny Bowden Four Food Groups”: food you could hunt, fish, gather or pluck. Stay away from overly processed and get back to basics.
The information on 30Seconds.com is for informational and entertainment purposes only, and should not be considered medical advice. The information provided through this site should not be used to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease, and is not a substitute for professional care. Always consult your personal healthcare provider.
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