5 Myths About Healthy Living Finally Set Straight

2 weeks ago

Adopting a healthy lifestyle can be difficult, but maintaining it can be even more difficult if you make a few wrong decisions that were not advised by a professional. There are a lot of things we tend to do merely based by things we read on the internet or solely base them on someone else’s experiences. We sat with Faten Abu Hasna, a specialist in clinical and sportsmen nutrition in Amman, Jordan who set the record straight on topics regarding leading a healthy lifestyle.

Does going completely vegan mean you are missing out on all the protein?

When you think about protein, you automatically jump to the conclusion that the only sources of protein are meats of all kinds. Faten proves otherwise, and explains that veganism can in fact give your body all the nutrients it needs including protein without having to consume animal based foods. She states that it is completely healthy to opt for the vegan way of living so as long as you have good enough alternatives to the conventional sources of protein - like beans, quinoa, soy, legumes and certain seeds to make sure you are not protein deficient in anyway; a deficiency in protein can cause muscle loss and other healthy problems. She advises anyone who is adopting veganism as a lifestyle to consult with a dietician to guarantee complete safety in their consumption of the needed nutrients.

To maintain your weight, which is worse to re-introduce - sugar or carbs?

There are kinds of people, some are carb junkies and some have a sweet tooth that just does not seem to stop itching. As soon as some of us achieve our goals, we tend to go back to bad habits whether it is that piece of cake every morning or pasta galore. It is important to understand that both are equally bad in different ways. Faten shares that if you wish to stay on the right track, you should find healthier sugars and carbs as alternatives. She thinks that you can actually satisfy all your cravings with healthier alternatives, so as long as the sources of carbs and sugar are not the refined ones. If you’re a carb lover for example you can make it a point to regularly eat it in its pure form being brown carbs, and the same goes for sugar. Freekeh, brown rice and pasta and whole wheat can in fact do the trick without causing you to gain extra weight for they are great sources of fiber which helps maintain your metabolism. Honey and maple syrup are healthier options for your sugar cravings as well, and you can easily incorporate them in your diet.

What is really the healthiest way to balance physical activity and dieting?

It goes without say that exercising is an essential component in your life whether you want to lose weight or not, Faten believes. To maintain a healthy way of life, you should balance your calorie consumption with how much you’re burning. If you want to maintain the goals that you have achieved and still wish to be a foodie, then you should take on more exercise than you used to. Faten also encourages people to still pick healthier alternatives to eating alongside a healthy workout regime. 

The buzz behind taking supplements, are they actually that big of a deal?

Every single time we hear about a certain type of supplement, we run to the nearest store and buy what we think we need. Supplements are actually only necessary if we lack a certain vitamin that we are not getting from our diet, for many reasons. Faten thinks that supplements are only essential if you’re an athlete losing a lot of essential vitamins due to intense workouts, so that they make up for those losses, and that they should only be taken under supervision of a health professional. Faten also states that the consumption of certain supplements can actually be dangerous for women, as they could tamper with hormones and cause health issues in the long run.

What is the truth behind taking certain superfoods? Do we really need them?

Superfoods come in all shapes and sizes, but they’re not a one-size-fits-all kind of concept. Faten identifies superfoods as foods that are richly condensed in vitamins and minerals essential for our bodies and we might actually already be consuming. The question becomes whether or not it is essential to take commercial superfoods on a regular basis, and that just depends on the person’s preference of certain foods, as a small dosage of a superfood can give you a large amount of essential nutrients. Faten explains that it is imperative to consult with a professional dietitian before the random selection of including superfoods in your diet.

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