Holy shit, it’s June. We ignored all the signs and warnings. We threw caution to the wind as we ate that third (all right, fifth) slice of pizza. We didn’t switch out our Diet Coke for LaCroix (LET ME LIVE). We promised ourselves that tomorrow would be the start of our diet. Bitches, tomorrow is here. But before you freak out and go on a 72-hour fat flush and laxative tea diet, we did some investigatory journalism about those diet myths you def have believed since age 12, when you saw your first issue of Vogue and wondered why your tummy had fat rolls. Stop believing these diet myths now that you are a grown-ass adult.
1. All Calories Are Created Equal
If a piece of pizza is 300 calories and a giant salad is also 300 calories, then, like logically, I should “cheat” and have the pizza cause I deserve it and also it’s the same amount of calories and will sit upon my thighs the same way. Right? Fuckin’ wrong. According to Eat This Not That, your body will store calories differently depending what they are.
If you eat something that’s more difficult to digest, like corn, your body can’t absorb as many of the calories and, therefore, you aren’t as likely to gain weight from it. Protein is also great because a) it keeps you fuller longer and b) your body is more easily able to burn off the calories while it’s digesting your salmon or steak. Cookies, on the other hand, get their calories from our friend sugar, which isn’t as easily burned off. So veggies and protein good. Cookies and pizza, not so good.
2. All Sugar Is The Devil
Errrrrr, wrong. You can’t equate the sugar found in a banana with the sugar found in a box of Jelly Belly (like my mom’s now-defunct diet program tried to do in the early 2000s). It just isn’t the same. According to Prevention, the sugar in fruits and veggies comes with fiber that helps slow down the absorption of said sugar. Jelly beans come with nothing but short-lived happiness, then a slow decline into cellulite, so there’s that trade-off to consider. Don’t be afraid of the naturally occurring sugars in your fruit. Be afraid of the naturally occurring sugars in cookies and pie.
3. Cut Out Every Single Carb
Carbs are evil: a mantra we’ve known since the dawn of about age 14. According to Prevention, you CAN have carbs, live your life, and not end up on an episode of My 600-lb Life anytime soon.
Just follow the USDA recommendation: half your plate should be veggies, one-quarter whole grains, and one-quarter protein. Plus, you can ditch shitty carbs like white bread and white potatoes and replace them with bougie carbs like farro, quinoa, and sweet potatoes. If you cut carbs altogether, you’re more likely to crave them, order from Domino’s at 11pm, inhale that three topping cheese-stuffed goodness, then cry yourself to sleep.
4. You Need To Do Juice Cleanses And Detoxes
Ok, first of all—you don’t need to detox. That’s what your liver and kidneys are for. It’s fine to eat lighter or more healthfully the day after drinking a handle of vodka and eating a Little Cesar’s Hot & Sweaty, but there’s no need to starve yourself into a meditative plane and subsist on lemon juice and cayenne pepper because Beyoncé did it and I just do everything Beyoncé fuckin’ does now. Plus, if you slash your calories to like, 800 per day for a week, you’ll end up losing and then GAINING weight thanks to your body being too smart to fuck up your metabolism like that. Get it together and have a sandwich.
5. Don’t Eat After 7pm
Sounds great and is based on nothing. According to Real Simple, “calories can’t tell time,” which is news to me and probably most of our great American nation. The idea is that if you stop eating after 7pm, your body has more time to digest before it goes into nappy sleep mode. That isn’t true, since if you eat a bowl of oatmeal for whatever reason 15 minutes before bed then pass out, your body will just use those calories the next day. Now, this doesn’t mean you should def continue your routine of eating a bowl of Breyer’s before bed every night, but it also means you can have that piece of fruit or bit of cereal before hitting the sack without worrying about gaining 50 pounds.
Images: Jamie Street / Unsplash; Giphy (2)