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You’ve heard them before. Facts about dieting and exercise that are repeated so often, they must be true. Right? Well, not necessarily. Some of the answers might surprise you.

All fats are bad for you.

False.

You should never stop consuming fats altogether, but you need to make sure that you choose the good ones to incorporate into your diet. Avocado, fish, nuts, flax and olive oil are great sources of healthy fat that will keep your body going!

You should avoid eating carbs.

Somewhat true… somewhat false.

While the carbs that come from white bread, white rice and processed foods aren’t that great for you, there are certain sources of good carbs that you shouldn’t overlook. Beans, fruits, vegetables and whole grains are excellent sources that’ll give you the energy and nutrients you need, without all the extras.

Drinking water helps you lose weight.

False.

Drinking water may fill you up, but it doesn’t help you shed pounds. That’s because the mechanisms of hunger and thirst are completely different. However, you should still be drinking at least 8 glasses of water a day.

As long as you exercise, you can eat whatever you want.

False.

What’s that modern adage? Oh, right! “Abs are made in the kitchen.” Most of your progress in the gym depends on the nutrients that you consume. You’re allowed to have a cheat meal every now and then, but it’s in your best interest to rein in your eating habits if you want to see results.

You can reduce fat in one area.

False.

Spot reduction doesn’t work. Unfortunately, doing a thousand crunches or 20 minutes of bicep curls a day isn’t going to get you the desired definition in that one muscle group. A better plan is a combination of total body resistance training and cardio, and of course a clean diet, to get you the results you want.

Machines are better than free weights.

Somewhat true… somewhat false.

While they can be great for beginners or people with injuries, machines only focus on specific areas of the body. They’ve also been designed for men, which makes it harder for women to reap the same benefits. Free weights provide a wider range of motion and burn more calories than a machine workout.

You sweat a lot when you’re out of shape.

False.

You actually sweat sooner and more frequently when you’re at a higher fitness level. This is because your body’s heat-regulating system is consistently being used and improved upon with every workout. The more you sweat, the quicker you can cool down, which means you can work even harder as you go.

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