Personal health is important to most people, but thanks to the internet and social media, some misconceptions get out of hand. There’s a wealth of health myths out there, many accepted as common knowledge. You don’t need a medical degree to know the difference between fact and fiction, so read on to learn about some of the most common fabrications.
“You need eight ounces of water a day.”
In reality, you should drink so you aren’t thirsty. You get water from other sources throughout the day, like water-rich fruits and other types of beverage, so a few glasses is usually enough. If you have frequent headaches, feel tired, have dark urine, or have trouble eliminating, then you might need to grab an extra glass or two.
“Being cold will make you sick.”
This can also come in the form of wet hair supposedly making you sick, but neither is true. Bacteria and viruses make you sick, not the temperature or weather condition; you get sick by making contact. Activity in cold weather may actually help fight off sickness, since your body’s immune system works harder in response to it.
“Cracking your knuckles gives you arthritis.”
Cracking your joints doesn’t damage them, but rather sends air through them. This is harmless, and while the chance of arthritis naturally increases as we age, cracking your knuckles has no connection. However, if your knuckles hurt when you crack them, you may want to see your doctor.
“Toilet seats spread diseases.”
It’s your hands that do most disease-spreading, particularly when you touch restroom handles or the floor. The seats themselves tend to be cleaner and don’t harbor many bacteria for long. Just to be safe, though, wash and sanitize your hands before leaving the restroom.
“Gluten-free diets shed pounds.”
The only people who need a gluten-free diet are those who have celiac disease or gluten intolerance, who compose approximately 1% of the population. People who assume the diet without these concerns are generally cutting other foods as well, hence the change in weight.
These are just some of the popular myths; more are out there. You can’t know everything, whether or not you have an education in healthcare, but brushing up on falsehoods nonetheless can help you steer clear of potentially harmful “advice.” Take some time to consider questionable health advice and do some reading to discover the truth for yourself.