Thursday, September 28, 2017

Debunking Healthy Lifestyle Myths

The world is full of myths, so we can never truly escape them. And we can never quite know if a myth has any truth to it, either. But we know, thanks to the work of science and the life in general, that some myths are categorically not true. Specifically, we know that a lot of myths regarding having a healthy lifestyle and health in general are categorically not true. Read on to see just some of the myths surrounding health that have been debunked by a combination of science, and life.

An apple a day keeps the doctor away 

This one might be a bit obvious, but as good as it is to eat an apple a day (because of the vitamin C and fibre that is packed within them), unfortunately it will not keep the doctor away. Unfortunately, even eating two apples a day will not do this either. So, don’t expect to keep your doctor away, and keep yourself completely devoid of illness, just by eating a Granny Smith daily with your lunch.




You MUST completely cut out bad habits in order to be healthy

 Completely cutting out all the bad and unhealthy habits that you indulge in in life, such as smoking and the consumption of alcohol, is of course recommended if you want a squeaky clean bill of health. But completely cutting out these habits and vices isn’t necessary if you want to be healthy, and it is just a myth to say that it is. You don’t have to be a saint to be healthy; you can smoke and drink if you want to.

What you should do, however, is indulge yourself in these vices in a responsible manner and always stick to the recommended guidelines that are in place regarding them. Specifically, what you should do is cut down on these habits. One example of doing so is a smoker gradually cutting down on their daily smoking habits until they eventually come to a day where they feel comfortable to have only a few cigarettes, or maybe even none. Another way for smokers who want to cut down on their smoking habits is for them to take up vaping. To do this they would have to purchase an e-cigarette and e-liquid from a wholesaler that dispenses them, such as https://www.vapeshop.co.uk, throw their tobacco cigarettes away and get puffing. Doing this is a great way to both save on money spent on traditional cigarettes as well as cut out the many risks that they pose to our health. 

There is no harm in having a little fun in a while, so there is no need to completely cut smoking and drinking out of your life for good in your quest to live a healthier lifestyle. But if you do want to live a healthy lifestyle, then you’ll have to make cut backs and even changes. Basically, you don't have to cut out bad habits to be healthy; cutting down and tweaking them will do. 

You MUST eat a low-fat, high-carb diet to be healthy 

Science has well and truly debunked the myth that your diet needs to be both low-fat and high-carb. Multiple tests and studies have been conducted regarding it, such as the largest nutrition study that has ever taken place: the Women’s Health Initiative, and each one has helped to debunk it. This diet does not induce weight loss. It does not fight cancer away. And it does not reduce the risk of heart disease. So, don’t believe it! 

Salt and processed sugar are the work of the devil 

It is surprising just how bad a reputation salt and sugar have in the condiment world. Of course, they are not the healthiest of things to consume in the world, and should always be consumed in as responsible and restricted a fashion as possible, myth or no myth. But the flack they get is unjust; furthermore, the things said about them is, most of the time, just not true. 

For instance, it is common knowledge that salt should be restricted in a diet to prevent heart attacks, strokes and ultimately death. But why is this common knowledge, when there is no scientific evidence to back it up? Yes, it has been proven that a lowering of salt intake can result in the lowering of blood pressure. But there is little evidence out there pointing towards the lowering of salt intake leading to the lowering of the chances of heart attacks and strokes. In fact, the only evidence that points towards such a case regards those that suffer with salt-sensitive hypertension. For those that don’t, salt equaling heart attacks and strokes is a myth that scientific evidence (or lack of it) claims is not true. 

And processed sugar doesn’t get off lightly when it comes to myths either. A few myths that it is tainted with include: it carries empty calories, it is as addictive as heroin, it is worse for you than its natural counterpart, it causes hyperactivity and that it is an aphrodisiac. And guess what, it turns out that none of these myths have ever been proven! Of course, sugar should never be consumed in excess, just as salt shouldn’t. But neither it nor salt are half as bad as they are made out to be. So, do not fear: you need not eat boring, tasteless food and live a sugarless and saltless life in a bid to be healthy. 

 For more nutritional myths that have been debunked by science, make sure to click here

Vaccines are bad for your health 

 Vaccines are there to protect us from illness, right? They are there to do nothing but keep us healthy, right? Well, if you listen to the myths surrounding them, you’d probably say wrong. There are a host of myths and conspiracy theories revolving vaccines, even those as simple as the flu vaccine. One such conspiracy theory is that they are given to us by the government because of an ulterior motive on their part to keep the population down. Sounds ludicrous, doesn’t it? Unfortunately, however, that is just the tip of the iceberg in regards to what it is believed vaccines do to our bodies. 

Soda makes children grow up to be obese 

It has been stated that one cupful of soda a day increases the likelihood of a child growing to be obese by a whopping 60%. But where is this information coming from? Was there somewhere a poor child that was forced to drink a can of soda every day just so those that create these ‘statistics’ up could create another one? Probably (hopefully) not, so this one is surely a myth. Yes, soda is not good for anybody, let alone growing children. But no, a soda a day is not going to single handedly turn an otherwise healthy child into an obese adult. 

 So, if any of you parents out there want to treat your child(ren) for, say, doing their homework, then do not be afraid to give them a can of Coke as a prize. But if you do allow your children such luxuries, remember it is important for them to have a balanced diet. So, make sure they’re out playing in the garden, and subsequently exercising, as much as can be. And make sure they’re eating their greens too! When they do these things, one can full of soda (and sugar) isn’t going to hurt.


To nullify a food binge, just drink a fruit juice 

The idea that a whole food binge can be nullified by one single healthy juice is a nice thought. Unfortunately, however, that is all it is: a thought. In reality, blending together one green smoothie isn’t going to answer all the problems caused by binging out on a bucket load of unhealthy food. Now, this isn’t to say it’s not a good idea to blend yourself together a concoction of super foods and make yourself a green smoothie, and subsequently guzzle it down, because it is a good idea. By doing so you get all of your five a day in one big gulp — and that’s good. But this is to say that doing so is not the answer to having an unhealthy food binge. As stated above, to be healthy you simply have to have a healthy diet. That means less binging and eating at least just as many foods that are good for you as are bad.

There are a whole host of myths regarding the subjects of having a healthy lifestyle, healthy eating and health in general. There will always be a food you’re told not to eat because it will ‘cause illness’. There will always be a habit you have that you are told you should cut out if you want to ‘live longer’. There will always be a different diet that you ‘must’ be eating religiously, no matter how it tastes, and a certain lifestyle that you ‘must’ be leading, no matter how boring it is. There will always be myths when it comes to health, but you shouldn't necessarily believe them. Instead, you should do whatever it is you want, no matter the warning attached to because of a myth. Preferably, you should lead a lifestyle that is balanced — but, each to their own!
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