The most common nutrition questions.

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Each and every day nutrition professionals get asked the same questions, over and over again. So here are the most common nutrition questions that get asked in the dietitian’s office, and the answers you may, or may not have been hoping for.

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How many eggs each day can you eat?

Old science told us that a diet high in saturated fat resulted in increases in blood cholesterol and since eggs, like all animal foods contain both saturated fat and cholesterol, they were banished from many a diet altogether. Eggs are one of the most nutritious foods out there, and while they contain some fats, as part of a balance diet consumed an egg or two each day will not negatively impact your weight or cholesterol levels. 

Do I need to stop eating bread to lose weight?

Not at all, there is not one food that causes weight gain, rather it tends to be the type of bread we are choosing. Large wraps, Turkish bread and thick slabs of the white stuff we often consume at cafes will easily result in a carb and calorie overload if we are not careful. On the other hand, a slice or two of small, dense grain or Sourdough bread will not significantly increase calorie or carbohydrate intake and adds much nutritionally to the diet. 

Is fruit too high in sugar?

Fresh fruit, like dairy contains naturally occurring sugars. For example the average piece of fruit will contain 20-30g of sugars depending on the size of the piece of fruit. When your overall sugar intake is low, consuming a piece of two of fruit per day, as recommended will not adversely impact your diet or weight loss goals. On the other hand, if you enjoy your fruit juiced or in a dried form, you will be consuming much more added sugar than you realise and as such when it comes to fruit, fresh is always best. 

Which is the best yoghurt?

There are literally hundreds of yoghurts and it can be very confusing to pick ‘the best’ option. Generally speaking plain Greek yoghurts are a good choice, especially the higher protein varieties. Fruit yoghurts are generally much higher in sugars (20-30g vs. <10g in natural / plain yoghurt). For this reason, if you do not like higher protein Greek yoghurt, natural yoghurt teamed with fresh fruit is your next best choice. Swedish style yoghurt, or quark is also exceptionally good nutritionally if you like to taste. 

Is sushi a healthy choice?

Sashimi is a healthy choice, but large California rolls made mainly of rice are not as nutritious as you may think containing much more carbs than protein or nutrient rich vegetables. Improve your Japanese order by focusing on sushi, edamame, seaweed salad and just 1-2 small brown rice rolls. . 

How much sugar a day should I be having?

Added sugars are different from natural sugars, and ideally we should aim to keep our added sugars that come from processed foods, sauces and treats to an absolute minimum or <25g or 5 teaspoons a day. You will get this simply from using a sauce or two through the day, and perhaps a little in a processed snack bar, yoghurt or breakfast cereal. Check labels and look for options that do not have sugar written on the ingredient list, or that contain <10g of sugars per 100g or <5g of sugars per serve. 

What oil should I be cooking with?

Extra Virgin Olive Oil – contrary to popular belief you can cook with olive oil, in fact it is one of the most stable cooking oils to cook with, especially at home when we are generally cooking between 160-240 degrees. Extra Virgin Olive oil is nutritionally rich offering antioxidants and Vitamin E and its intake as part of the Mediterranean diet is linked to reduced heart disease risk factors and longevity. Coconut oil, another popular alternative is actually a largely saturated fat which does not offer the benefits of antioxidants or extra nutrients, while vegetable oils are heavily refined and do not compliment the ideal fatty acid ratios the average person should be consuming for optimal health.