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  • Ben

Stop dealing in nutritional and exercise absolutes!

In an industry that is outcome focused, it is far too easy to get caught up on the latest fitness and diet thought processes, with the sole focus on reaching your goals sooner.

As part of my MNU course, this blog post is going to out-line some of those thoughts. Getting out of focusing on small, unnecessary techniques, while focusing on the importance of a balanced outlook and lifestyle.

What I start with when trying to break my own biased thoughts, is to try and consider why the opposite might be true. In some situations, there is a positive to any diet or exercise plan to be correct and successful. This however doesn’t mean that it is correct and beneficial for everyone to take part in this latest trend.

Let’s start with a common nutritional misunderstanding. Cutting out/severely restricting any macronutrient/micronutrition/food type from your diet.

· “cut out carbs and you’ll lose weight”

· “don’t consume diary”

· “vegan/vegetarian is a better diet”

· “artificial sweeteners are as bad, if not worse than sugar”

· “eating too much protein causes strain on your kidneys”

· “keto is the best diet” …

…to just name a few.

Where the problem lies with these pieces of ‘advice’, is that simple; by restricting your diet with some of these points could lead to a severe reduction in vital vitamins and nutrients your body needs, as well as creating a negative mindset to certain food groups, leading to the possibility of disorder eating tendencies.

Now here’s my side to it. Unfortunately, it won’t make me millions of pounds richer, or even be a bit of catchy or sexy advice.

These bits of advice depend on so many different factors. They depend on the person giving the advice. They depend on the person receiving the advice.

But what they don’t depend on is evidence.

The evidence to show that cutting out or restricting anything from your diet is null.

Cutting out carbohydrates from your diet is such a broad term that to the average person outside of the fitness industry is just baffling them. Carbohydrates come is different types; potatoes for example, once boiled are considered one of the most filling foods we can consume. With the right diet in place, these are a fantastic carbohydrate to consume. While high sugar sweets, still considered a carbohydrate, are not. They provide us with a high number of calories to a very small amount of nutrient sparse food.

These are both carbohydrates with very different effects on the body. Cutting carbohydrates out all together will not have as much of a positive effect compared to just looking at what kind of carbohydrates we are eating in our diet, and perhaps switching some sweets for another snack will be more beneficial.

The keto-diet gets a lot of attention, mainly for what is considered a fast weight loss.

Unfortunately, the evidence shows that the only thing that leads to the ketogenic diet providing a weight loss out-come is it putting the individual in a calorie deficit. This can be achieved through many ways that aren’t slamming your carbohydrate intake to minimal amounts and restricting a lot of good beneficial foods.

Is there a benefit to the ketogenic diet? YES!

Evidence has some that someone with epilepsy taking on a keto diet will have less severe and less total seizures when taking on this diet style.

Education and understanding for a client or individual are far more important than just throwing out blanket statements that may well be doing more harm than good. Unfortunately, social media posts and interactions don’t respond well to an ‘it depends’ message, when compared to a snappy message alienating our food choices.

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