8 common myths about a healthy lifestyle that we often hear from various smart people and PR managers.
Myth number 1. You should drink at least 2 liters of water a day
This postulate of a healthy lifestyle was first promulgated in 1945. Then the US Board of Nutrition advised all prudent Americans to drink 8 glasses of water a day in order to stay in shape and keep their bodies clean and tidy. Since then, many diets include the same recommendation, and there is a popular belief that a large amount of liquid helps to lose weight.
Actually. By itself, water will not do you any harm, but in large quantities, as you know, anything can be harmful. Try to estimate how much liquid you consume per day: even if you exclude all other drinks, you still eat vegetables and fruits and thus get moisture. If you overdo it, the result can be a condition called hyponatremia, or, more simply, a lack of salts in the body. This will dramatically increase the risk of cardiovascular and other serious diseases, says Dr. Rachel Vriman of the Center for Child Health Research at Indiana University.
Myth # 2. Stress turns hair gray
Recently, it is fashionable to blame everything on stress - from acne to cancerous tumors. This go-ahead is perhaps the second most popular after the "lack of vitamins" and "malnutrition". By the way, they often explain hair loss.
Actually. Stress really has a negative effect on our body. The more nervous a person gets, the faster they age, says Dr. Nancy Snyderman, because stress increases the amount of free radicals in the body. And they, in turn, are the main culprits for the appearance of wrinkles and hair loss. However, there is no scientific evidence that stress is accompanied by graying, there is no. The timing of the appearance of gray hair is determined by our genes, and not by the ability to control ourselves.
Myth No. 3. Reading in dim light deteriorates vision
Remember what your mother told you as a child? Brush your teeth in the morning, wash your hands before eating, sit up straight and not read under the covers. And now a good half of the population of our planet is confident in the inviolability of this rule.
Actually. When you read in low light, your eyes have to seriously strain. However, the maximum that this threatens is a headache and, possibly, wrinkles around the eyes. In addition, the eyes may hurt for a while. You will feel itchy and dry, but this will go away rather quickly. Reading in low light has no long-term effect, Sniderman argues.
Myth number 4. Coffee is bad
Disputes between lovers of tea and coffee have been going on since ancient times and, probably, will not end for a very long time. Let's try to understand a lot of arguments and cite only medical facts.
Actually. And again we return to the question of the sense of proportion. Of course, if you do not leave the coffee machine day and night, by the evening you will be a real bundle of nerves, ready to burst at any minute. See above for the effects of stress on the body. But if done in moderation, coffee can even be beneficial.
First, coffee, like green tea, contains antioxidants (of course, when it comes to a natural product). And so it significantly reduces your risk of type 2 diabetes, says Stacy Beeson, a nutritionist at the Idaho Medical Center. One recent study by Harvard University found that for women who drink coffee daily, this risk drops by as much as 30%. Other similar studies show that coffee also reduces the incidence of bowel cancer, cirrhosis of the liver, Parkinson's disease, and gallstone disease. Another plus is that coffee stimulates brain activity and, contrary to popular belief, does not increase the chances of undermining the cardiovascular system.
At the same time, the norm for the average person is no more than 3 cups a day (based on 100 ml per cup), says Beeson. If that amount brings you insomnia and high blood pressure, cut it in half or switch to substitutes. If you are pregnant or lack calcium in the body, it is better to consult a doctor.
Myth # 5. Fasting at high temperatures
This myth went back to those distant times, when there was simply nothing to treat a cold, and people went to any, even the most ridiculous, in our opinion, means to get rid of the disease. Another reason for this belief is that the digestion of food slightly raises the body temperature. People who are fond of self-medication also believe that during the heat it is not necessary to take away the energy from the body to process food - it, they say, already has few of them.
Actually. As a rule, colds and fever are caused by various viruses that enter the body and live in it from a week to 10 days. How you eat at this time does not depend on the lifespan of the virus, Vriman says. Doctors do not have any scientific evidence that diet during illness somehow affects the body's resistance, but even if you do not really feel like eating, it is better to have a snack with something small, but juicy. Because whatever one may say, you just need fluid to stay hydrated. In addition, moisture will help you cope more easily by reducing the amount of mucus, thereby relieving a runny nose and cough.
Myth # 6. Fresh food is better than frozen
Ever since scientists discovered the wonderful thing about antioxidants, nutritionists have been praying in unison for fresh produce. "Freezing kills useful substances" - as the mantra is repeated by doctors. The same applies to any cooking method associated with heat treatment.
Actually. Frozen fruits and vegetables can be as good as fresh if they are harvested and frozen, as they say, at the peak of maturity. And cold processing and sealed packaging retains much more vitamins than remains in "fresh" products that have lain in the sun or in a supermarket refrigerator.
Myth No. 7. Consuming eggs increases cholesterol levels
The logic of this statement is simple: the eggs themselves contain a lot of cholesterol - accordingly, if there are any, the level of this harmful substance in the blood will increase.
Actually. The latest research in this area has shown that only certain types of dietary fats affect cholesterol levels. And they are much less in eggs than, for example, in milk of medium fat content (almost 2 times). At the same time, eggs contain proteins, vitamins A and D. They are inexpensive, affordable and easy to prepare. So one egg a day will be a very beneficial ingredient in your diet, Beeson says.
Myth number 8. If you get cold, you will catch a cold
Another common truth, told to us in childhood. And since my mother said so, then it is so?
Actually. A decrease in the external temperature does not affect the state of immunity in any way. Unless, of course, we are talking about extreme degrees of frostbite, when it is no longer necessary to worry about a cold. And we catch a cold, as mentioned above, thanks to viruses, and not because of the cold. As for the trend according to which the largest number of colds occur in the cold season, it is not related to temperature. The fact is that in winter we are more often in enclosed spaces, pushing in the subway, sitting in a cafe instead of walking down the street. And this is the most fertile soil for the spread of infection.