Six health misconceptions debunked

By Katerina Mansour, Staff Writer

Published in print Apr. 15, 2015

As young adults we’ve heard or been told various things relating to health. Every day we hear conflicting information, and some of us believe in the myths we’ve been told for the majority of our lives. Here are six that I’ve been subjected to, and most likely many of you have also, that I believe should be debunked.

Birth control pills make you gain weight

It’s widely believed by women that birth control pills will make you gain weight. However, no clinical trial has ever been able to establish a correlation between birth control pills and weight gain. One type of contraceptive that has been proven to cause weight gain is injectable depot medroxyprogesterone acetate (DMPA), which most of us know as the birth control shot. In 2009, researchers at the University of Texas linked the shot to an average 11 pound weight gain over a period of three years.

Milk is good for your body and your bones

People tend to believe that drinking milk is good for you. All that calcium is good for your bones, and milk’s nutrients are good for your system. Well, countless numbers of studies are proving that drinking milk can actually bring about the complete opposite results.

According to a variety of medical studies, milk could increase your chances of osteoporosis and actually lead to bone depletion. It is allegedly a poor source of calcium, which we can get through a plant-based diet (much like cows do). On top of this, there are crucial issues with the amount of chemicals found within cow milk, and the health concerns they lead to in humans.

Eating healthy food costs too much

Many young adults claim that eating healthy is just too expensive for them. Well, this is a myth.

The problem is that most young adults don’t know how to grocery shop properly or what products to look at in terms of nutritional value.

The National Institute of Health claims that instead of thinking only fresh fruits and vegetables are good for us, we should look into the very low-cost options of canned or frozen produce, while keeping a close eye on their labels for nutritional facts.

In addition to that, shopping at multiple different grocery shops in order to find the best deals will also help reduce the expenses of buying healthy food.

Furthermore, eating out or ordering food for delivery on a regular basis will cost you more than cooking your own meals if you shop smart.

The fact is that the problem isn’t money, but rather that people don’t want to eat healthy foods because they don’t like their taste, or they don’t want to put forth the effort necessary to find out what is healthy, how to cook it, etc.

We need to drink 8 glasses of water per day

All our lives we’ve heard that we should drink eight glasses of water per day to remain healthy.

However, current nutritionists have no idea from where this eight glass notion came. In fact, the Institute of Medicine now includes all drinks consumed, not just water, in a required two liters for women and three liters for men.

To cure a nose bleed tilt your head back

Whenever we get a nose bleed, people always tell us to tilt our head back to stop it. According to physicians, however, tilting your head forward while sitting up straight is the way to go.

You can catch an STD from sitting on a toilet

It’s almost become instinct to act carefully while using public toilets out of fear that we might catch some type of illness. However, countless studies show that this is a myth.

Physicians claim that it is close to impossible to contract an STD by using a toilet because that type of bacteria is unable to survive in that environment for long.

The bigger issue with public bathrooms is of course people who don’t wash their hands. The focus should therefore be on protecting yourself from dirty faucets, door and toilet handles.

Categories: Katerina Mansour, Opinions

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