Skip to comments.Ten Top Medical Myths
Posted on 05/11/2008 7:23:14 AM PDT by kellynla
Everyones heard these medical myths, and your mom (and maybe even your doctor!) may have been guilty of spreading a few of them:
High blood pressure causes headaches. High blood pressure usually has no symptoms. Neither does it cause dizziness, although dizziness is a common side effect of treatments for high blood pressure.
Women should examine their breasts. Research shows that routine breast self-examinations arent sensitive enough to detect many lumps, and may subject women to increased anxiety.
Its dangerous to mix alcohol and antibiotics. Alcohol doesnt interact with antibiotics. Metronidazole (Flagyl) is an exception, however, and can cause vomiting.
Bed rest is useful additional therapy. According to 39 studies of bed rest versus early mobilization, bed rest is usually not beneficial and may, in fact, be harmful.
Hot black coffee will help you sober up. Although caffeine will reduce the sedating effect of alcohol, it will not reduce the amount of alcohol in your system any faster.
Reading in dim light ruins your eyesight. Reading for long periods of time in dim light may cause you to squint and strain your eyes maybe even triggering a headache but it wont hurt your eyes.
We use only 10 percent of our brain. Although this myth has been around for a hundred years, numerous imaging studies have shown that no part of our brain is inactive.
Drink eight glasses of water a day. Drinking so much water is unnecessary since most of us get plenty of water from our food and other drinks, including tea and coffee.
Eating sugar causes diabetes. While eating sugar doesnt cause diabetes, it does make you fat and that increases your risk for the disease.
Chocolate causes acne. Relax and enjoy a sinful chocolate treat. Hormones, not chocolate,
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This one always cracks me up.
When was the last time you heard "Bob was shot in the head 9 times during a drive-bye, fortunately the bullets hit the 90% of the brain we don't use"
Women should examine their breasts.
How silly: that’s a job for men!
>Chocolate causes acne.
Wish I could say from experience that that is not true.
While hormones may very well be the dynamic, I broke out very quickly after eating chocolate in my teens.
“Eating sugar causes diabetes. While eating sugar doesnt cause diabetes, it does make you fat and that increases your risk for the disease.”
I have to disagree with this one. Type 2 diabetes which is 95% of the total diabetes nationwide is most often preceded by insulin resistance which is caused in large part by a combination of obesity and high carbohydrate intake... sugar is what all carbohydrates are broken down into in the body. The more carbs/sugars introduced into the body the greater the amount of insulin required to be produced by the pancreas to compensate. Eventually the pancreas simply “burns out” from the ever increasing demand to produce greateramounts of insulin and diabetes is the result.
An early cocaine elixer now a Baby's delight!
But seriously, I think there is cause for discussion on this one on both a philosophical and neurological basis.
The former would have to do with the word "use" in this context. Do we use that part of our brain that "dreams" or does it use us.
Of course, new neurological studies using functional MRIs have shown that we do "use" certain areas of our brains while attempting to accomplish some things and others while involved with different tasks... So how much of our brain is consciously provoked and how much is sub-conscious...I'll bet there is plenty of study material on the brain that would make a normal brain go unconscious.
Oh, if it were only true in Washington, DC! 90% of the politicians are brain-dead.
Some of these “mythbusters” are pretty short-sighted. The first is the ONLY good one:
>>High blood pressure causes headaches. High blood pressure usually has no symptoms. Neither does it cause dizziness, although dizziness is a common side effect of treatments for high blood pressure.
As for the rest, useless mythbusting and maybe actually bad advice.
>>Women should examine their breasts. Research shows that routine breast self-examinations arent sensitive enough to detect many lumps, and may subject women to increased anxiety.
Those that do BSE’s regularly, and are very familiar with the topography of their breasts can and do find problems early. My aunt is one such person, who found something and had an early mammogram, detecting an early-stage lump. If you get all anxious about it, that’s your problem, not a flaw with the practice.
>>Drink eight glasses of water a day. Drinking so much water is unnecessary since most of us get plenty of water from our food and other drinks, including tea and coffee.
While you won’t die of thirst from not drinking 8 cups of water a day, and you do get water from other things you consume, those folks that often get headaches and/or are trying to lose weight, increasing water intake is a great help. And keeping hydrated during workouts or increased physical activity is a must.
>>Eating sugar causes diabetes. While eating sugar doesnt cause diabetes, it does make you fat and that increases your risk for the disease.
Eating sugar may not “cause” diabetes, but eating it or any explosively absorbable carbohydrate really strains your ability to regulate blood sugar levels (in addition to making you fat). Sugar is never a good thing for your body.
>>Chocolate causes acne. Relax and enjoy a sinful chocolate treat. Hormones, not chocolate,
Right, but a diet high in body-cleansing foods like fruits and vegetables helps to reduce incidence and severity of acne, whereas one high in saturated fat exascerbates acne.
What you ingest has a direct impact on your body. If you want to be healthy, you want to maximize those things that replenish and rebuild the body rather than just shovel down something that tastes good. As our kids and population get fatter and fatter and more unhealthy, I think its better to classify foods as “good” or “bad” even if it does not have a linear A—>B effect immediately (which seems to be the only effect this “mythbusting” list seems to care about). That being said, the occasional indulgence is not going to kill you. :-)
“Hot black coffee will help you sober up. Although caffeine will reduce the sedating effect of alcohol”
Which is the act of sobering up. If you reduce the impact of the alchohol it doesn’t matter if its still in there.
I have found I break out from things I am allergic to (even slightly). So, you might have a slight allergy to chocolate, to the milk in it, to the SOY in it (almost all chocolate has soy lecithin in it), or even to corn syrup if it's a candy bar with other ingredients.
WHITE bread = sugar....but, many people do not know that....
Heh, heh, heh, heh, heh, heh, heh. You ain’t got no class or couth.
All carbs equal sugar in the body.
YEP.....I know that....but, sooooo many people do not.
White bread = starch. Wheat bread = starch plus a little wheat germ and bran. Either way, it’s starch city, which your body rapidly converts into glucose. Bottom line is they’re not that different in terms of their sugariness. I think white bread has gotten a bad rap.
Actually white bread is highly processed wheat flour with almost all if not all of the bran/fiber removed therefore the body breaks in down into sugar much faster than whole grain breads thus causing far greater “sugar load” for the pancreas to deal with. It these sugar spikes that many experts now feel are the root cause of insulin resistance and all the myriad of disorders associated with it.
See metabolic syndrome.
I have a relative that had 'terminal acne', I means the terrible lumpy kind.
He went on a no chocolate, no fried foods, wash face w/ hot water only regimen and in a few months it cleared up.
I was amazed. This was back in the '50s BTW.