Everyday Food Myths Quiz

Staff Writer

You should spread your protein consumption fairly evenly throughout your daily meals.

Many people skimp on protein during breakfast and lunch, which robs their body of energy and muscle-building nutrition. You're better off dividing the protein rather than loading up during one meal.

According to one long-lived myth, chocolate can cause which affliction?

For generations, chocolate has been blamed for causing acne. However, there is no connection between skin blemishes and this tasty treat.

Why are calories bad?

Calories keep you alive, because without energy, well, it's bucket-kicking time. Choosing healthy sources for your calories is what matters. To wit -- less soda and more fruits.

Carbohydrates are good for you.

Yes, carbs are great, and necessary. It's the source that matters. If you eat too many sugars or refined grains, well, those kinds of carbs in excess can be bad for your body. Fresh fruits, whole grains, dairy and other foods all have healthier carbs.

One myth is that aluminum foil will cause which affliction?

This myth was common decades ago -- that cooking with aluminum foil can cause you to do develop Alzheimer's disease. Fortunately, it has no basis in fact.

Kale is NOT loaded with which nutrient?

Kale has a reputation for being packed with protein, but it's really not much higher in this nutrient than other vegetables. That means you still need to find healthy sources of protein for your diet.

What happens to kids who do NOT drink cow's milk?

Cow's milk isn't a magical potion, and kids don't need to drink it. They can get all of their necessary nutrients from other sources.

The yellow yolk of an egg contains much of the egg's nutritional value.

Some people incorrectly believe that omitting the yolks makes eggs healthier. In fact, much of the protein and many of the nutrients are found in the yolk.

Why do many people say that you shouldn't you eat any food before you go to bed?

One pervasive myth is that your late evening calories will contribute to higher-than-normal layers of fat. You should always watch your calorie intake, but it doesn’t necessarily hurt you to eat at night.

Why do some people say you should never use a wooden cutting board?

Some people say that wood boards can't be cleaned properly and thus become home to germs. But tests have shown that wood boards are not more susceptible to germs than plastic boards.

Vegetarian diets are typically healthier than non-vegetarian diets.

Omitting certain foods through a vegetarian diet can certainly be extremely beneficial to your health. But if you're only eating French fries and carrots, your vegetarian fare ultimately isn't better for you.

Doctors once advised people to drink how many glasses of water per day?

In an effort to get people to drink less sugary stuff (like soda), some doctors advised drinking eight glasses of water per day. The reality is that everyone is different, and that water needs vary depending on the circumstances.

Organic foods really aren't healthier for you than conventional foods.

Organic foods are exposed to fewer chemicals. Fewer pesticides and herbicides can mean healthier food for you and your family.

What's one potential effect of regularly consuming artificial sweeteners?

Too many artificial sweeteners can change the composition of your gut bacteria, which can cascade into changes elsewhere in your body, too.

Eating fish lowers your cholesterol levels.

About a third of a fish's fat might be omega-3 fats, which are good for you. That leaves 70% of fats that can actually cause your cholesterol levels to rise. As with all things, moderation is key.

One myth ties the consumption of soy products to which affliction?

One persistent rumor is that soy can cause cancer, particularly breast cancer. But to date, there's no conclusive study that proves this link.

Eating fat definitely makes you fatter.

As with so many food myths, context matters. Plant-based fats like those found in avocados, olive oil and nuts are extremely good for you in moderation. They help your body better process nutrients, too.

About how much of a typical olive oil is saturated fat?

Olive oil isn't necessarily the healthiest choice in every situation -- it has about 15% saturated fat, which you should consume in moderation.

According to one myth, why should you add salt to boiling water?

One enduring myth is that salt helps water boil faster. It does, but only in quantities that would render your food inedible. Salted water is useful, though, for things like pasta -- it helps make this food tastier.

Foods high in sodium typically taste salty.

Some salty foods (like pretzels) have visual cues that they are high in sodium. But many processed foods have salt blended into their composition that you can't really taste. That's why you should always check the nutrition label.

Why are the sugars found in fruit better than the sugars found in juice?

In whole fruit, the sugars are combined with a good supply of fiber, too, which change the way the sugars interact with your body. In short, it's better to eat an orange than to drink just orange juice.

How does searing a piece of meat change its juiciness?

It's a common myth that searing seals juices into a cut of meat. Lab tests have shown that seared meats often actually wind up drier than non-seared meats.

What's one common myth regarding food cravings?

A common myth is that cravings mean you have a nutritional deficiency. But cravings are typically linked to foods that improve our moods, a fact that we often notice during times of stress.

Processed foods are bad for you.

All of your foods are processed in one way or another. As with the rest of your diet, the importance lies in choosing healthy versions of the foods you eat. Canned black beans are great; canned refried beans, only in small amounts.

How much trans fat is found in a typical egg?

Eggs continually get a bad rap for being high in fats -- like trans fats -- that contribute to health problems like high cholesterol. However, eggs have no trans fats whatsoever and are actually pretty good for you.

You can eat dark leafy greens to get a lot of your daily calcium needs.

Collard greens, kale, bok choy and other dark leafy green veggies are actually high in calcium. Many people believe that dairy products are the only (or best) way to consume calcium, but it's simply not true.

Eating celery burns more calories than you take in.

Celery is indeed a very low-calorie food, but it still provides you with some net positive energy.

Why isn't granola typically a healthy food choice?

Many types of granola are loaded with sugar. Look for brands with minimal sugar and add fresh fruit for sweetness instead.

Regarding protein, what do many people say about meat?

For many years, a lot of people have believed that meat is the only "complete" type of protein. The truth is that you can get all of your nutritional needs by balancing your intake of other foods.

Exercise lowers "bad" cholesterol.

Rigorous exercise can improve your good cholesterol, but it has almost zero effect on bad cholesterol. That means even hardcore athletes have to watch what they eat.

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About This Quiz

There is a world of misinformation about the foods we eat. How much do you know about food myths?

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