These days we suffer from information overload. There is information on the radio, television, internet, magazines and books. There is plenty to read in newspapers we pay for and free ones. Then there is additional information from family, friends, colleagues and casual acquaintances. There is certainly no shortage of knowledge on a wide variety of subjects. I often feel I should be better informed but I canít keep up with it all.
Another problem is being given conflicting information. There is always new research. When the sources for both sides of the argument appear reputable who do you believe?
For some time we have been led to believe we should all be drinking at least two litres or eight glasses of water each day. People often carry a water bottle with them and drink throughout the day with this figure in mind. Recently I read an article claiming it is unnecessary to drink two litres of water a day. The article said we usually get at least a litre of fluid a day from food especially that with a high water content like watermelon.
This article also stated caffeine is not a diuretic so tea and coffee count towards fluid intake for the day. The fluid consumed in the form of milk drinks and fruit juice all counts.
Another article said it may be bad for your health to drink too much water. Excess water intake, and two litres could be too much, can cause salt levels to drop too low. This can lead to various health issues.
I started to notice other sources saying two litres of water a day is more than we really need. Whereas we have been led to believe the magic two litres a day is good for the kidneys, some are now saying it could cause damage. One point which made sense to me is that the two litre recommendation doesnít take into consideration gender, weather, environment, an individualís size or activity or fitness level. What advice should one follow?
I have often read white bread has no nutritional value and have an attack of the guilts any time I eat a white bread roll. Now some research claims eating white bread increases good gut bacteria (lactobacillus) which helps ward off certain disease. White rice does the same. How do you know what is good for you?
Some sources claim drinking more than two cups of coffee a day is bad for you. Other information suggests drinking four or five cups a day may help prevent Alzheimerís Disease. I havenít read information giving the size of cup or the type and strength of coffee to which these claims relate.
Recent research suggests pectin, found in some fruit especially apples and citrus, lowers the level of certain good bacteria in the stomach. This contradicts the findings of previous research. I donít know by how much it lowers that level and whether it is enough to cause a problem to the average person.
Butter has received negative press off and on for decades. It seems currently there is an increase in support for butter as a reasonably healthy food in moderation. The same can be said for some other foods which go in and out of favour.
It is not only in relation to food that contradictory information is presented to us. I guess one just needs to keep an open mind and not stress too much. When it comes to diet, a wide variety of food and not an excessive amount of one item is probably the safest way to go. I also think it is important to enjoy what one is eating. Could I please have a slice of fresh white bread with butter? Yum.