MH Nutrition’s masterminds tackle your trickiest food questions and serve you answers straight up.
Q: Are all protein sources created equal?
A: No. The best sources square measure eggs, lean meat, and fish. Unlike plant proteins, animal protein contains the right proportions of the essential amino acids your body can’t synthesize on its own. Go one, have a steak.
Q: If my options are a cheeseburger, a hotdog, or a slice of pizza, which should I eat?
A: The more high-fiber veggies the better. So your best option is pizza with peppers, mushrooms, and spinach. Avoid refined carbs in the crust if possible – look out for ones made with whole meal flour.
Q: Is turkey bacon better for you than the real thing?
A: Calorie-wise the difference is negligible but turkey bacon has a long list of additives. At least with regular bacon, you’re closer to ‘real’ food, not a synthetic one.
Q: Is chicken a better choice than beef?
A: It depends on how the animal was raised. Free-range chicken is super healthy, but the budget version has 266% more fat (and 33% less protein) than it did in 1971, says the Institute of Brain Chemistry and Human Nutrition. Similarly, grass-fed beef is better than grain-fed, with 16% fewer calories, 27% less fat, and 10% more protein. So it depends on the quality of the cut, not whether it clucks or moos.
Q: could a glass of fruit crush the organic process equivalent of a chunk of fruit?
A: Alas, no. Most fruit juices contain huge amounts of added sugar to reduce tartness. Stick to whole fruit. An apple has 13g of sugar however a glass of juice has 24g.
Q: What’s best to stay awake: coffee or an energy drink?
A: Coffee. The caffeine in one cup should keep you alert for five hours. And studies have shown it’s packed with antioxidants, enhances short-term memory, and protects against dementia.
Q: Is rice tons healthier than white rice?
A: You bet it is – its fiber takes up more room in your stomach, so you feel fuller. But if this fiber is removed (as with white rice), rising blood sugar triggers a flood of insulin from the pancreas, which encourages your body to store fat. A Penn State University study compared how much belly fat people lost when they ate whole grains. Result? The wholegrain eaters lost 2.4 times more fat. So change up your shopping basket.
Q: Are white cheeses healthier than yellow?
A: When it comes to weight loss in general, yes. Yellow cheese has more calories because of its higher fat concentrations. Cheddar, for instance, has 133 calories and 9g of fat per 100g, while Brie comes with 94 calories and 8g of fat. But whichever way you slice it, all cheese is fattening. One hundred grams has about 100 calories, more than twice the amount you’ll find in the same-size serving of salmon.