Back-to-School Quiz: Test Your Knowledge About Nutrition
The start of school happens once a year, but good nutrition is important year-round. To help you make the grade for healthy living, take this true-or-false quiz.
1. “Macro” is a modern diet term that only nutritionists know about.
It sounds complicated, but in reality, a macro diet is just about determining the right number of macronutrients your body needs to meet your goals. Counting macronutrients means counting the number of grams of protein, carbs and fats you consume as part of an overall calorie limit. A macro diet helps people develop portion control and make good choices about how they fuel themselves. Further, the macro diet can be customized for the individual, and the ratio of proteins to carbs to fats can vary based on what each individual wants to achieve.
So, yes, it sounds trendy and fancy, but it’s actually a simple formula to make sure your body gets what it needs. A YMCA nutrition consultation can get you started!
2. Pasta and olive oil are good for you.
These two get a bad reputation because pasta equals carbs, and olive oil equals fat. But the truth is they both have important nutrients the body needs. Pasta is low in sodium and free of cholesterol. It’s also a good source of iron, B-vitamins, and in the case of whole wheat pasta, fiber. Studies have shown that eating pasta along with a low-glycemic index diet can result in weight loss.
Olive oil is also good for you in that it is high in monounsaturated fat, which is the “healthy fat.” Monounsaturated fats have been shown to lower the risk of heart disease, improve insulin levels and improve blood sugar. Of course, the key with both pasta and olive oil is moderation.
3. Fruit has too much sugar and so I should avoid it.
It is true that fruit has high levels of sugar, and it is true that too much sugar is not good for you. However, the fructose in fruit is not the same as the added fructose in a can of soda. And experts assert that while consuming excess fructose can cause harm, there is not enough fructose in fruit to be a problem.
In addition, the sugar in fruit should not take away from its other important benefits. Fruit is high in vitamins, minerals and various antioxidants and plant compounds. It’s also a huge source of fiber, which can help make you feel full.
4. I can eat what I want as long as I exercise.
As part of a simple math equation this is true – as long as you burn off the same number of calories you take in, it is possible to maintain your weight. However, in reality, it is must easier to enjoy a dinner out than to run three miles. And calories quickly add up, much faster than you can burn them off. Even if you do make sure to keep the input and output equal, not paying attention to what you eat can be bad for your health. Exercise is good for the heart, but it’s not enough to overcome foods that are high in sodium, cholesterol, fat and sugar.
5. To be healthy, I need to eat right.
This one is a freebie. Bottom line, any source will tell you that good nutrition is an essential component of living healthy, maintaining a healthy weight, and reducing your risk of chronic diseases from heart disease to cancer. Experts warn that unhealthy eating habits can lead to hypertension and type 2 diabetes. And to meet your wellness goals, from losing weight to feeling your best, exercise alone is not enough. Eating right is a must-do for everyone, at every age.
At the YMCA, good nutrition is always in session. For more right answers on how to eat healthy, contact the experts at your YMCA, which now offers two nutrition solutions to help members optimize their health and achieve their fitness goals.