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12 Health Myths That Need Correction

Lots of people want to be as healthy as possible. Whether they already feel pretty good but want to make some improvements, or they’re really sick and trying to get better, there are many reasons people change their lifestyles. However, despite our best intentions, we often end up following advice that is not only ineffective but also untrue.

There is so much conflicting data and misinformation out there that it can feel impossible to know what is actually true regarding our health. To make things even more confusing, some of the most popular health myths have been around for decades and are deeply ingrained in our culture.

It’s time to set the record straight and debunk these 12 common health myths that are completely untrue.

1. Strict Dieting for Weight Loss

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The concept that weight loss is solely determined by a calorie deficit is widely debated and often misunderstood. Eating fewer calories than we burn is a great theory, but pretending we can calculate how many calories each individual unique body burns daily precisely is ridiculous.

The truth is our bodies are complex, and weight loss (and the number of calories we burn and need daily) involves a combination of factors such as genetics, hormones, and metabolism. Plus, the quality of food we consume can be just as important as the quantity.

Strict dieting can do more harm than good, often leading to unhealthy eating patterns and potential nutrient deficiencies. Instead of focusing on restrictive diets, aim for balanced and sustainable healthy eating habits.

2. Exercise is Bad While Pregnant

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Exercise is beneficial during pregnancy but must be approached cautiously, considering the individual’s health and pregnancy status. Pregnant women are often told by their parents or grandparents that they should rest and limit physical activity during pregnancy, worrying about their well-being.

In reality, most women can continue to exercise at their usual level or even start a new fitness routine with their doctor’s approval- which will help expecting moms maintain a healthy weight and manage any health issues like gestational diabetes. Some women are able to run and life almost all the way to their due dates.

It’s crucial to talk to a healthcare provider about the appropriate level of exercise during pregnancy, but it’s generally safe and beneficial for both mom and baby.

3. Sit-ups and Crunches Target Abdominal Fat

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Contrary to popular belief, targeted abdominal exercises alone cannot magically remove fat from specific body areas. Losing excess body fat requires a combination of healthy eating, regular exercise, and overall fat loss throughout the entire body (no one loses fat in just one region of their body).

While sit-ups and crunches may strengthen your abdominal muscles, they won’t necessarily lead to visible abs if a layer of fat is still covering them. Focus on a well-rounded workout routine and maintaining a healthy diet to see results in your midsection.

Since belly fat is associated with a higher risk of chronic diseases, such as heart disease and type 2 diabetes, it’s important to prioritize losing belly fat with a comprehensive approach rather than solely relying on targeted exercises that don’t work.

4. The Breakfast Myth

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Since childhood, we have been bombarded with the notion that breakfast is the most important meal of the day; it turns out it’s all a myth. This myth began with Kellog’s cereal and a marketing campaign to sell more products.

While a nutrient dense breakfast can help kids who need energy for school, breakfast is not essential for everyone. Other evidence is highly inconclusive. For anyone tapping into the potential benefits of intermittent fasting, skipping or delaying breakfast is a key part of the equation.

Breakfast is still essential for some people, especially those with certain health conditions or specific dietary needs. However, it may not be the most important meal of the day for everyone, especially if the meal is filled with sugary or processed foods.

5. Low Fat Products are Better

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Fat is an essential macronutrient the body needs for various functions, including hormone production and nutrient absorption. However, in the 1980s, the rise of the low-fat diet trend caused many food companies to start producing low-fat versions of their products. The trend never disappeared, and many people still believe low-fat products are healthier.

But here’s the catch- when food companies (and individuals) take out fat, they often replace it with sugar or other unhealthy additives to maintain flavor and texture.

Healthy fat sources, such as avocados, nuts, and olive oil, should be incorporated into a well-balanced diet. Fat helps people feel full, prevents overeating, and aids in weight management. After all, eating fat does not make you fat (which is like saying that eating carrots will turn you orange); sugar primarily does.

Don’t be fooled by low-fat labels; always check the ingredient list for added sugars or unhealthy additives.

6. Washing Hands With Hot vs Cold Water

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There is an old-school belief that hot water kills more germs and is more effective for washing hands. However, the truth is that warm or cold water with soap can effectively clean hands. The most important aspect of handwashing is the duration, the soap suds, and technique- not water temperature.

In fact, using hot water can be harmful to the skin, causing dryness and irritation. It’s also a waste of energy and resources to constantly use hot water for handwashing. So next time you wash your hands, don’t be afraid save some energy and stick with warm or cold water.

7. Catching a Cold by Being in the Cold

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We’ve all heard the age-old myth from parents about bundling up in cold weather to avoid catching a cold. Viruses cause colds- no the hold.

Research shows that being in the cold weather does not make someone sick. In fact, it’s more likely that people are staying indoors and in closer contact with others during colder months, which leads to the spread of viruses and illness.

While staying warm and avoiding exposure to extreme temperatures is still important for overall health, it’s not a direct cause of catching a cold. So next time you’re outside in the cold weather, don’t worry about bundling up too much- just make sure to practice good hygiene and stay away from sick individuals.

8. It’s Fine Not to Complete the Antibiotic Course

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When dealing with a bacterial infection, such as strep throat or a urinary tract infection, doctors often prescribe a course of antibiotics to effectively eliminate the bacteria. However, there is a common misconception that it’s okay to stop taking antibiotics once someone starts feeling better.

In reality, it’s important to complete the full course of antibiotics prescribed by a healthcare provider to completely eradicate all bacteria and prevent the development of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. Stopping a course of antibiotics early can also increase the risk of recurring infections.

9. Vaccines Can Cause Autism

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It’s a seriously crazy myth that is definitely very hotly debated. This myth has been thoroughly debunked by countless studies and scientific consensus, yet it still persists in some communities.

Of course, there are risks involved that each person needs to consider. Overall, vaccines are generally considered safe, effective, and crucial for protecting against life-threatening diseases. Not only do they protect the person who receives them, but also those around them who may not be able to receive vaccines.

The original study that claimed a link between vaccines and autism has been discredited and the author’s medical license has been revoked. Yet, this myth still circulates and causes harm by discouraging people from getting vaccinated.

10. Using Case Studies for Evidence

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We often hear stories like, “My grandma smoked [or insert any vice] for 50 years and lived to be 100 years old.” These singular examples aren’t a great way to make health decisions since we all have different genes, exposures, etc.

Similarly, case studies are just one observation and don’t necessarily hold true for the general population. It’s essential to consider larger sample sizes and evidence-based research when making health decisions.

11. Anything That Doesn’t Feel Right

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While traditional trends have people blindly trusting medical professionals, personal preferences and feelings are a paramount part of patient care. Don’t follow recommendations out of “duty” when it doesn’t feel like it fits your needs, use your own reasoning and trust your gut! It’s important to feel comfortable and confident in your health decisions.

Don’t be afraid to speak up and ask questions or seek a second opinion. It’s essential to advocate for your own health and well-being, and sometimes that means challenging traditional beliefs or recommendations. Ultimately, you are the one who knows your body best. So trust yourself and don’t be afraid to make informed decisions that are best for you.

12. All Carbs Are Bad

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Carbohydrates have gained a bad reputation in the diet and fitness world, with many people believing that they are always unhealthy and should be avoided. It has lead to extreme dieting practices, with some people even fearing eating basic whole foods like apples and carrots.

However, the truth is that not all carbohydrates are created equal and some can actually have beneficial effects on health. Complex carbohydrates such as whole grains, fruits, and vegetables provide the body with essential nutrients and fiber.

It’s typically important to have a balanced diet that includes carbohydrates in moderation for overall health and well-being.


26 Ways Real People Were Able to Lose Weight Sustainably without Extreme Dieting

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Finding it challenging to lose those stubborn extra pounds, and growing more disheartened by the digits on your scale? The plethora of diets, exercise routines, and conflicting guidance can, without a doubt, feel quite bewildering. In the midst of numerous choices and contradictory information, you might naturally ponder: Where should you even commence?

26 Ways Real People Were Able to Lose Weight Sustainably without Extreme Dieting

Is 6 Hours of Sleep Enough? Here’s What Your Body Does On Different Amounts of Sleep 

Tired businesswoman with laptop
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Sleep is a captivating voyage that holds the key to a healthier and more joyful version of yourself. However, how much sleep a person needs differs from one person to another. However, many people ask, is six hours of sleep enough to sustain us throughout the day? To decipher this question, let’s delve into the effects on our bodies when we undergo different durations of rest.

Is 6 Hours of Sleep Enough? Here’s What Your Body Does On Different Amounts of Sleep 

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