A Nutritionist-Dietitian's perspective of food, nutrition, and diet sprinkled with a little life story.


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10 Myths about Food, Nutrition, and Diet


Posted on September 4, 2018

by: Hyacinth Acain for TheAtomicDiet.com

Click the link: Can eating chocolates help you pass the exam?

In my years of practice as a Registered Nutritionist-Dietitian (RND), I would always receive unfounded questions and sometimes statements about food, nutrition, and diet.

Here are a few questions (in a statement form) I would often get, which I explained further for your info- fyi.

You’re welcome:

1. Drinking cold water makes you fat. 

No, it can’t. But it can satisfy your thirst and your appetite by giving you the feeling of fullness. Whether you’re drinking hot, cold, or lukewarm water; pure water itself has no calories; Z-E-R-O.

Among other functions of water is to help move cell nutrients in our body but drinking warm or cold water cannot liquefy or destroy body fats because fat itself is insoluble in water.

2. It is important to eat a heavy breakfast.

There’s a saying that goes: “Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a queen, and dinner like a pauper.”

My answer: It depends.

Some people prefer light breakfast while others function best on a full meal. The key is individualization and as a dietitian, I always respect my client’s comfort, as long as they meet their prescribed caloric intake for the whole day.

The reason, however, on why you should eat something in the morning is because your body digests food for energy. It’s like an engine; your body cannot operate without fuel.

3. The After 6 PM diet can help me lose weight.


The explanation is similar to Myth #2. Furthermore, each individual has a caloric requirement tailored according to their height and physical activity, and clinical condition if applicable. Anything consumed beyond the caloric requirement is an added body fat. 

4. Eating rice makes you fat.

Yes, if you go beyond your allowance, otherwise it’s a NO.

Rice is mainly carbohydrates. Eating carbohydrates, in general, cannot spontaneously make you fat. In fact, a good meal plan for a day focuses more on complex carbs, e.g. rice, potatoes, pasta.

To give you clarity; extra fat stored is food consumed beyond the allowed caloric and macronutrient intake. So, eating carbs that are within your daily allowance is safe.

Fact: Macronutrients are the BIG 3; Carbohydrates, Protein, and Fat.

Related blog post Carbohydrates vs Fat

5. I cannot eat my favorite foods because I am on a diet.

Okay, tell me your favorite food….

First of all, a diet isn’t purely all about weight loss. It also refers to the food and refreshments that we take every day.

Secondly, you are the commander of your diet. I, your dietitian, will only organize your diet plan. As long as it isn’t a clinical diet, i.e., for medical purpose, I can always fit in a serving of ice cream if a client wants to include it in their daily meal plan. There is, however, a moderate intake of such food choices, and this is called a balanced diet.

Lastly, if you have a long list of favorite foods, don’t be upset if I, your dietitian, cannot accommodate it all in one day because you and I are on a process called caloric-counting. But I can provide you a set of menu for a day and you may choose the food that suits you.

Related blog post meal plan of a vegan diet

6. Eating pancit canton (instant stir-fried noodle) did not help me lose weight, but it’s the only meal I eat.

The overrated warning, which you often hear at the back of your mind, is true: Pssst… It isn’t healthy!

Yes, because there is no variety in your food intake, thus, you can’t get the full benefits of vitamins and minerals; the colorful the food, the better.

Moreover, it is a known fact that processed foods, like pancit canton, have a high salt content. Although salt has zero calories, excessive intake of which may also cause water retention, making you feel bloated. You may not be gaining fat, but you are earning more water inside your body (swollen). 

Drinking cold, room temperature, or warm water cannot make you fat.

7. I can get vitamin C in hot lemon water.


Vitamin C is sensitive to heat, so if you want to get the full benefits of vitamin C, use a cold or room temperature water for your lemon juice.

8. If you want to lose weight, use honey instead of sugar.

A serving of honey and sugar will give you 20 calories. A tablespoon of which, will give you 60 calories.

Calorie-wise, an excessive amount of honey and sugar in your diet is not healthy. 

9. You can only get calcium from pure milk alone.

This is the common assumption I get a lot- from new acquaintances down to my relatives.

While pure milk is the richest source of calcium, nature is still generous to those who dislike the taste of it.

Here are a few calcium food sources (for those non-milk drinkers), which need to be incorporated in your caloric meal plan:

• Cheese

• Tofu

• Yogurt

• Chocolate milk

• Ice cream

• Calcium-fortified foods including soy and almond milk

• Bones of seafoods that can be eaten (sardines, tiny fishes and shrimps).

Dark green leafy vegetables also contain calcium. However, including it in your diet plan requires skill because of a present chemical compound, which could block the absorption of some minerals. 

Note: consider your food allergies and intolerances. 

10. There’s good food, and then there’s bad food.***

As a dietitian, I’d say, there is no such thing! As long as the food you are eating is fit for human consumption; approved by the food and health regulating department.

Moderation and Variety are key ingredients to a successful diet plan. I call it balanced, and that is healthy.

For example, there are occasions when I like to eat instant noodle soup (the instant stir-fry variety triggers my migraine), so to apply the moderation rule, I only use 1/8 of the seasoning packet that comes along with it. Of course, I include that intake in my individualized caloric meal plan.

As a dietitian, I support the client’s food autonomy within reasonable bounds; your maintenance diet is meant to be enjoyed.

Bottom line: You eat foods within your reasonable caloric requirement.

***except for therapeutic diets under certain medical conditions.

Related blog post Gluten-Free Diet  

Keywords: Water Fat Loss, Diet Questions, Nutrition Questions, Pancit Canton Safe, How to diet,

 Food Misconceptions, Food Beliefs, Food Myths, Diet Myths