It’s time for a quiz. Today’s subject: a few food and drink myths. We’re going to get to the bottom of these so you can be the healthiest person in the room. This is from eDiets.com.
- First, true or false: Coffee has more caffeine than tea. That’s TRUE, but it’s close. A cup of instant coffee contains about 90 milligrams of caffeine and a cup of black tea contains about 85 milligrams of caffeine. However, if you’re drinking BREWED coffee, then you’re looking at about 135 milligrams of caffeine per eight ounce cup. However, both coffee AND tea provide health benefits. Studies show drinking coffee can lower your risk of cancer, heart disease, Alzheimer’s, and diabetes. Both green and black teas contain substances that help blood vessels relax and protect your heart. Just don’t go crazy with the caffeine. In general, experts recommend drinking no more than three cups – or one Starbucks Venti.
- Next true or false question: If you’re trying to lose weight, you should avoid eating nuts. FALSE! In fact, research shows that eating a handful of nuts can help you LOSE weight, by suppressing your craving for fattening foods. Plus, nuts have health benefits, too. Walnuts are rich in Omega-3’s – the fatty acids which help reduce inflammation and increase good cholesterol, and almonds are high in Vitamin E - which helps ward off diabetes and cancer. However, nuts ARE relatively high in fat and calories, so you’ve got to pay attention to portion sizes. Fourteen shelled walnut halves contain about 180 calories and 22 unsalted almonds are about 160 calories.
- One more true or false food question: You need to eat more protein to build muscle. That’s also FALSE. Protein does have an important role in helping you stay healthy and build muscle, but excess amounts of protein will still be stored as fat - the same as excess amounts of any food. In fact, research suggests that too much protein can be harmful. It can increase your risk of osteoporosis, kidney stones, kidney failure, cancer, and heart disease. So how much protein SHOULD you eat? In general, most people need about 70 grams a day – or approximately a one-half chicken breast, one cup of beans, and one cup of nonfat milk.