“19 Hard Truths About Food” From A Certified Dietitian Interview With Author
It’s crazy how little we know about our bodies. We tend to think that sugar makes us gain weight, that sports are done better on an empty stomach, and anything bio and eco is immediately healthier.
But what if we told you it was all wrong? Well, Leah Forristall, a sustainable weight loss and outdoor sports dietician, has been debunking such myths in a series of light-hearted videos on her TikTok channel.
Titled “Hard Truths From A Dietician,” Leah’s videos reveal a refreshing look on diet, food and healthy eating and challenge the ways people view them. Scroll down to find her hard truths below and be sure to share what you think in the comments!
Bored Panda reached out to Leah Forristall, a content creator and registered dietician located in Massachusetts who has been making viral “Hard Truths” TikTok videos about nutrition. Leah told us that in her practice, she helps people reach their weight loss and fitness goals sustainably.
“I grew up dancing, which ultimately led to my interest in food and how it impacts performance. After 21 years, I decided to hang up my pointe shoes and focus on my passion for outdoor sports (specifically hiking),” she said and added: “Now I get to help other people fuel properly, whether their goal is to win an ultramarathon or simply lose 10 pounds while keeping the weight off.”
“There are a lot of misconceptions about nutrition. Food is personal, everybody needs to eat.” Leah said. When asked to share the most common one, the nutritionist said that it’s a misconception that “nutrition is black and white.”
“There is actually a lot of gray area, which is expected as everybody has their own unique, individualized needs. People tend to focus on the extremes instead of finding a healthy balance,” she explained.
“If I had one key nutrition tip for anyone looking to make healthy lifestyle changes, it would be to ask yourself this one question: ‘can I see myself in 10 years doing the exact same thing I'm doing now?’ If you don't enjoy what you're doing now, whether that be a specific workout routine or diet, you can't expect long-term results from it.”
When asked what her day looks like as a registered dietitian and nutrition coach, Leah said that every day looks a little different. “I'm a dietitian at a local university and see private practice clients during the evenings. Weekends I get to spend outdoors with the occasional workshop or nutrition event thrown into the mix!”
It’s no secret that the nutrition industry is currently experiencing unprecedented growth. Increased awareness of how diet affects health and the benefits of healthy eating habits means consumers are more educated than ever.
The Food And Drug Administration has recently released the results of its latest Safety and Nutrition Survey (FSANS) that incorporated 4,400 responses. The key findings showed that most consumers are familiar with the Nutrition Facts label. In fact, 87% of respondents have looked at the Nutrition Facts label on food packages, which indicated that people are getting more conscious about their food choices. The top four items that consumers look for on the label are: calories, total sugar, sodium, and serving size.
Moreover, another finding also confirmed that consumers have knowledge of the front packages of the food products they buy in supermarkets. “Over 80% of respondents have seen claims such as, 'No added sugar,' 'Whole grain,' 'Organic,' 'Gluten-free,' 'Low fat,' 'No artificial ingredients,' 'Low sugar,' and 'No artificial colors,'” states the survey’s findings.
But just like with any booming industry (think of beauty and fashion), the nutrition industry has its own trends that come and go. You probably remember the kale craze that was everywhere not so long ago. Now, in the post-pandemic world, the experts notice new emerging nutrition trends tipped to take off in 2022. This new report from Sainsbury’s Future Brands team and global agency The Food People shows a lot of interesting things about that.
“Beauty and skincare are big business, and consumers have long sought out the secret to looking younger through moisturizers and serums, but it’s now thought the ‘fountain of youth’ can be better absorbed through food and drink,” the Sainsbury’s Future Brands representative Ella Stockton explained to Bored Panda.
“Both collagen and hyaluronic acid are expected to join ingredient lists of staple supermarket products.” Edibles follow the already popular superfood trends where people aim to maximize their nutrition through foods that are rich in nutrients.
Other trends include eating sea crops that are hailed as the latest healthy food trend, clean label consumerism where people actively avoid artificial ingredients, the popularity of pre-biotics and post-biotics, nutrition-dense food and drink, and consuming various seeds.
Shokofeh Hejazi, a senior editor at The Food People, commented: “Consumers are more focused than ever on improving their health and wellbeing and they’re looking to what they eat and drink for solutions to help on that journey. This has led to a surge in functional foods that aim to improve immunity, gut health, energy levels and skin quality.”
Moreover, Hejazi said that consumers are generally more curious and knowledgeable than ever. “It means they are not just thinking about how something tastes, but querying what’s in it, how it’s made and whether it’s healthy.” She added that it’s “amazing to see how much these mindsets have changed in just the space of a year and a half, and where it may be heading in the future.”