Fact or Fiction?
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Most of the nutrients of a fruit or vegetable are in the skin, so you shouldn’t peel it.
If you peel fruits and vegetables, recognize what you’d be giving up- the nutrients and fiber that the peel contains. Any pesticide residues in foods you buy are present at minimal levels. It’s safe to say that they probably won’t pose any health risk. You can add more to your safety net by the way you handle your food in your kitchen. Wash fresh fruits and vegetables with water to remove residues on the surface and in the crevices. For foods such as carrots, squash, apples, and pears, use a vegetable brush to clean them even more. Rinse well. Avoid soap, (unless it’s a produce wash formulated to remove wax, pesticides, and soil) because it leaves its own residue. Bottom line: Leave edible skins on vegetables and fruits and trim away as little as possible. Most vitamins and minerals are found in the outer leaves, skin, and area just below the skin- not in the center. Peels also are natural barriers that help protect nutrient loss.
Eating after 9pm makes it easier to gain weight.
The truth is simple- a calorie is a calorie no matter what time you eat it. The number on your bathroom scale will start to climb when you consistently eat more calories that you burn off with physical activity. However, mindless munching in front of the television at night can push calorie intake over the edge. The reason why people may feel sluggish after late-night eating has more to do with overindulging in a grease-, beer- and salt-fest, which can cause bloating and stomach upset. Eat at regular intervals to help avoid extreme hunger and plan balanced meals that include a variety of healthy foods. Studies show that people who skip breakfast and eat fewer times during the day tend to be heavier than people who eat a healthy breakfast and eat four or five times a day. This may be because people who skip meals tend to feel hungrier later on, and eat more than they normally would. It may also be that eating many small meals throughout the day helps people control their appetites.
Bottom line: No matter when you eat, your body will store extra calories as fat. If you want to have a snack before bedtime, think first about how many calories you have eaten that day. Be aware of social situations that trigger eating-such as parties, entertaining friends, dating, talking around the coffee pot at work, and happy-hour business meetings. Create your ways to avoid overeating. Food journaling on your i-phone, blackberry, or notepad can help eliminate mindless eating; it’s like a personal diet GPS, helping you stay on course, and navigate around eating trigger. Make a list of fun “non-food-related” activities: enjoy your garden, choose an active hobby as a stress-buster, surf the internet, treat yourself to a massage, or buy something new to wear or read.
Dr. Deborah Neiman MD,
Sari Greaves, RDN & Noelle Lusardi, CPT
49 U.S. Highway 202 Far Hills, NJ 07931 908-470-2235