Health and Wellbeing have become a common topic of discussion these days. Google Doctors (a lot of people’s part time profession) has everyone giving health advice to any prospective candidate. You even over hear their conversations on public transport advising commuters on what they should be doing for their health. Circulating amongst these talks are a lot of false myths and thus the need to clarify a few of those.

  1. “Eating Carbs Makes You Fat”
    There’s a new diet introduced in the market every day. Some ask you to eat proteins, some say don’t. Some say eat it in the morning, some will say eat it in the night. Some say eat this, and some say don’t eat that. There’s something which will be strongly recommended by one school of thought and the next day you’ll read about how that could be one of the factors for you putting on those extra calories. Discussing one of the most common one – which says eats carbs will make you fat. Lay off the rice and bread. Do not eat those potatoes! Jean Harvey-Berino, Ph.D., R.D., chair of the department of nutrition and food sciences at the University of Vermont and co-author of The Eating Well Diet (Countryman, 2007) says there’s nothing inherently fattening about eating carbohydrates. He says “It’s eating too many calories, period, that makes you fat.” There’s no question that loading up on sugary and refined-carbohydrate-rich foods, such as white bread, pasta and doughnuts, can raise your risk of developing health problems like heart disease and diabetes. But if you cut out so-called “good-carb” foods, such as whole grains, beans, fruits and vegetables, you’re missing out on your body’s main source of fuel as well as vital nutrients and fiber. What’s more, for many people, a low-carb diet may be harder to stick with in the long run.
  2. “Everyone Needs to Poop Daily”
    Did you know it’s as normal to poop once every 3 days as it is to poop 3 times every day? No single bowel movement schedule is right for everyone. However, staying hydrated, eating foods high in fiber, and being active will help ensure that your schedule is regular and you do not become backed up. The frequency of defecation is not something that should be put to a schedule, since it is a bit unreliable and dependent on food intake. If you don’t poop frequently, don’t worry. Make sure your stool appears healthy and that it doesn’t cause you discomfort. Beyond that, you don’t need to worry much about your poop.
  3. “Antiperspirant Causes Breast Cancer”
    Don’t sweat it! Some scientists think the chemicals found in antiperspirants and deodorants can be absorbed through your underarm. The idea is they end up in breast tissue and make tumors more likely. But the National Cancer Institute says there’s no evidence connecting either product with breast cancer.
  4. “Chewing gum takes seven years to pass through your digestive tract.”
    Gum addicts can relax. Although your body can’t digest chewing gum, it doesn’t just sit in your stomach. You eliminate it when you go to the bathroom just like other food you haven’t digested.
  5. “Plucking gray hair causes two to grow back.”
    The truth: It’s fine to tweeze that errant hair. Genetics plays a key role in when you go gray, regardless of how often you pluck. It can take six months from the time a hair falls out until it grows back long enough for you to notice it; during that time, you’ll automatically see more gray hair as part of the aging process.
  6. “You crave certain foods because you’re deficient in one of the nutrients they provide.”
    Nope—unless you’re a deer or moose. (In the spring, those animals are attracted to “salt licks”—mineral deposits that supply nutrients they need.) Human food cravings tend to be more about satisfying emotional needs, says Marcia Pelchat, Ph.D., a researcher at the Monell Chemical Senses Center in Philadelphia. “Cravings tend to occur when your diet is restricted or boring, or when you know that you can’t have something,” says Pelchat. “If it’s forbidden, you usually want it more.” There is one nutrient deficiency that’s clearly associated with cravings in humans: iron. But instead of longing for iron-rich liver or steak, people severely deficient in iron stores tend to crave things like ice cubes, clay or even cement. Researchers don’t know what causes this strange, rare condition, called “pica,” but some suspect that a lack of iron might somehow affect the body’s appetite mechanisms.
  7. “It’s important to fast periodically, to cleanse toxins from your body.”
    Your body has its own elegantly designed system for removing toxins—namely, the liver, kidneys and spleen. There isn’t any evidence that not eating—or consuming only juice—for any period of time makes them do this job any better.
  8. Drinking alcohol kills brain cells.
    While excessive or chronic alcohol abuse can certainly have dire health consequences, experts do not believe that drinking causes neurons to die. In fact, scientific medical research has actually demonstrated that the moderate consumption of alcohol is associated with better cognitive (thinking and reasoning) skills and memory than is abstaining from alcohol. Moderate drinking doesn’t kill brain cells but helps the brain function better into old age

About the Author: Dr. Rukshin Master has been a practicing homoeopath since 2010. She is currently a panel doctor at the Homeopathic Health Center. She is also consulting at Bai Jerbai Wadia Children’s Hospital, Satya Sai Charitable Trust, Bombay Hospital and Ruby Hall Clinic, Pune. Currently pursuing a degree in M.D. Pediatrics at the University of Agra, she holds a Bachelor’s degree in Homoeopathic Medicine and Surgery (B.H.M.S.) from C.M.P. Homoeopathic Medical College, Mumbai. You could contact her for any questions on drrukshin@hhc.net.in

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