There is a ton of health information available to you today. Unfortunately, not all of it is reliable. Before you act on a diet, exercise, or other health advice you’ve heard, check out these ten common health myths that have little or no basis in fact.
1. Detox cleanses are necessary
The reality is that your kidneys and liver are pretty effective at flushing toxins from your body. So, unless you have a disorder with one of them, you shouldn’t have a big buildup of any toxins or chemicals that need to be detoxed. Drinking plenty of water is all your body needs to keep itself clear of buildup.
2. Crunches will lead to washboard abs
Sadly, there is no single exercise that will give you a six-pack stomach. Of course, that doesn’t mean you should skip crunches, just make sure to exercise your entire core (stomach, sides, back, and hips) for an effective workout.
3. You can get the flu from a vaccine
Contrary to popular belief, it is not possible to get a full-blown case of the flu from current vaccines. The flu shot uses a weak or killed version of the virus to stimulate your immune system, so you may feel some cold symptoms, but you will not get the flu.
4. Walking 10,000 steps is a good goal
This is a somewhat arbitrary number. An average, healthy individual could be considered active if they take around 10,000 steps a day. However, it isn’t a magic number that every person should strive for.
5. All sugar is bad for you
While it is a good idea to limit your added sugar intake, your body does need some sugar to function properly. Try to get it from natural fruit and vegetable sources when possible.
6. Weight training always leads to big muscles
While lifting weights is a great way to bulk up if that is what you want to do, it doesn’t have to lead to bulky gain. Strength training is an important part of an overall fitness plan and, done properly, can contribute to a leaner and toned appearance.
7. Sunscreen is only needed when it is sunny out
You can get damage from the sun even when it is overcast, so get in the habit of wearing sunscreen every day. Reapply it every two hours or so if you are outdoors.
8. Chocolate causes acne
Luckily for the millions of people who enjoy chocolate and clear skin, this is simply not true. Acne is caused by excess oil in the skin that clogs pores, not chocolate.
9. Bottled water is better than tap water
Thankfully for all of the people walking around with reusable water bottles, this is simply not true. Except in cases where local water sources are contaminated, there is no benefit to choosing bottled water over what comes from the sink.
10. Wet weather causes colds
Bacteria and viruses cause colds, nothing else. Wearing wet clothes or having wet hair may make you more prone to hypothermia, but it won’t give you a cold.