is dry january Ruining your life?
New year, new you – and this year you’re going to stick to it, obviously. The green juice and snazziest gym wear is ready and waiting for you to seize the healthy way of life – but are you really going about all this the right way?
With so many quick-fix options and tone-up trends, it’s hard to separate fitness fact from fiction – so here are six major myths that need busting ASAP if you want to see your body get fitter, stronger and leaner in 2017…
Myth #1: Quitting carbs will Help me lose weight
‘Carbs are very misunderstood and essential for weight loss,’ says fitness and nutrition coach Martin Hutton. ‘Not all carbs are created equal. But empty carbs do the body no good, and cutting back on these items will help with weight loss. The body needs carbs – just make sure they’re the correct ones.’ Make smart choices with unrefined, complex carbs, like wholemeal pasta, to add more fibre to your diet and keep you satisfied for longer.
Myth #2: Giving up booze For a whole month is A great detox
Coping without a glass of wine for 31 days is pitched as the ultimate challenge, but the British Liver Trust argues: ‘If you immediately go back to drinking heavily, you still put your liver at risk. It’s far better to keep your liver healthy all year round.’ Cutting out alcohol completely is an easy excuse to binge later, so rather than a total booze ban, try to get into sensible habits with two or three consecutive alcohol-free days each week.
Myth #3: No more snack in gin the evenings
A box of Maltesers on your lap at 9pm isn’t the best idea, but an Oregon Health & Science University study found that scoffing the right late-night snack is totally fine. ‘Eating at night is no more likely to promote weight gain than eating during the day,’ confirms study author Judy Cameron. It’s what you’re eating and how much of it, rather than when you’re eating, that counts.
Myth #4: Drinking Smoothies is a Healthy choice
Unless you’re following pricey plans of puréed kale and agave pulp, juicing isn’t necessarily the right choice, thanks to the often calorific ingredients and a lack of important fibres. Public health nutritionist Yvonne Wake says: ‘It’s a healthy choice because it gets us eating our five a day, but fruit juices may contain too much sugar if packed with fruit. Vegetables such as broccoli and spinach are a better bet in a smoothie, as they’re full of vitamins with great healing powers and nowhere near the same sugar level.’
Myth #5: Celebrity Bodies are the Best in spo
Remember, it’s part of a celebrity’s job to look good. Most people’s lives aren’t able to revolve around red-carpet-ready training. Instead, aim to become the best version of yourself you can be – healthier, leaner and stronger.
TV presenter and body positive blogger Grace Victory says: ‘Yes, celebrities with abs exist, but that’s not the only body type that’s beautiful. They have dieticians, personal training and other means of looking like that. Yes, that is real, but it’s not feasible or achievable for everyone. It’s time society recognised that beauty really does come in different forms.’
Myth #6: Working Out everyday will Get me in the best Shape possible
‘Whenever you put your body under physical stress, you need to give it the time it needs to recover properly – not only to avoid injury but to improve in fitness, strength, and support your metabolism for the next time you exercise,’ says sports rehabilitation therapist, Tyler Overton. Scheduling rest days is crucial. Even if you’re a casual gym visitor, avoid burning out by limiting yourself to five days a week max.
Keep your liver healthy all year round
Make sure your new regime won’t do more harm than good
It’s important to pace yourself
It’s always better to opt for veggie juices