Seven Medical Myths

Here is a link to a paper by Rachel C. Vreeman and Aaron E. Carroll that gives the science behind seven common medical myths. You can read the paper, but I have listed the myths here. Just to be clear, none of these are actually true, though many people believe them.

The seven myths are:

  1. People should drink at least eight glasses of water a day;
  2. We only use ten percent of our brains;
  3. Hair and fingernails continue to grow after death;
  4. Shaving hair causes it to grow back faster, darker, or coarser;
  5. Reading in dim light ruins your eyesight;
  6. Eating turkey makes people drowsy;
  7. Mobile phones create considerable electromagnetic interference in hospitals.

One fun fact pulled out of the paper is related to how much water we need to drink. The amount is considerably less than eight glasses, but the most important part is that the water we need is mostly contained in the food we eat. What this really means is that all the Nalgene, CamelBak, and various other hydration bottles all around the office are largely unnecessary — especially because we sit all day in a climate-controlled environment.

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