11 Facts About Our Bodies That Turned Out to Be Myths
There are so many facts about our bodies that we learned in school or heard from adults. However, many of them are far from the truth.
Bright Side has worked out which claims about our bodies you should stop believing.
Myth #1: Vitamin pills keep us healthy
With just one tablet, we can improve our health! This is actually not the case. Vitamins only regulate processes in our bodies, and we should be careful about taking them in tablet form since an excessive amount of them can do more harm than good.
Myth #2: Deoxygenated blood is blue in color
Blood that lacks oxygen, which is pumped through the veins toward the heart, is definitely not blue — it’s a dark red color. In school textbooks it’s colored blue to emphasize the contrast with oxygenated blood. The veins you can see through your skin seem blue because the light shining on them gets refracted.
Myth #3: Brown sugar is healthier than white sugar
In fact, white and brown sugar are the same thing. They differ in terms of the use of molasses, which gives a product a darkish color. Brown sugar is often mistakenly considered healthier because it’s not as sweet as white sugar, on account of the larger amount of water the former contains.
Myth #4: Alcohol kills brain cells
A large amount of alcohol affects metabolic processes in the body and can lead to a deficit of oxygen. This can harm the connections between brain cells, but it does nothing to the cells themselves.
Myth #5: Sugar makes children hyperactive
Sugar doesn’t make children hyperactive — this is nothing more than a myth. Sugar means calories, and calories mean energy. So when some children eat a lot of sweet things, the energy just flows out of them. But remember that, most of all, sugar is harmful to their teeth.
Myth #6: Nerve cells don’t regenerate
The supposed fact that nerve cells can’t regenerate is not a fact. The death of nerve cells is a constant and entirely natural process. New ones appear in various different parts of the brain. When a person feels stressed, it is the chemicals that make these cells function and interact with each other, rather than the actual nerve cells, which are used up.
Myth #7: The left hemisphere of the brain is the source of creativity; the right hemisphere is the source of logic
It’s true that the left hemisphere of the brain is responsible for certain functions and the right for others. But scientists have yet to find people who have one side that’s more developed than the other. The point is that several parts of the brain function as the collective source of our creativity, and they’re located in both the right and left hemispheres.
Myth #8: You need to get eight hours of sleep a night
Everyone knows that we should sleep for eight hours a night. Yet different people need different amounts of sleep, and both an excess and a lack of sleep can have negative effects on our health. For some people, it’s enough to sleep for six hours in order to feel great, whilst others feel exhausted even after they’ve been in bed for nine hours.
Myth #9: Antibiotics kill viruses
Antibiotics only kill bacteria. Influenza is caused by viruses that don’t react to antibiotics. In this case, it’s like applying a Band-Aid to get rid of a headache: it just won’t work.
Myth #10: Chocolate gives you blackheads
Scientists once carried out an experiment: they gave dozens of people bars that contained ten times more chocolate than normal. When they compared the number of blackheads these people had before and after the experiment, they found no differences. It might sound strange, but it’s true.
Myth #11: Sugar is addictive
In 2009, a book came out about the results of an experiment in which laboratory mice were fed large amounts of sugar over several days. Once they’d experienced this diet, they couldn’t live without the stuff. However, when the experiment was repeated with human beings, the same effect did not occur. And, of course, human beings can’t survive on sugar alone.
- Shaving makes your hair thicker. With age, hair becomes thicker and darker, but that has nothing to do with shaving. After shaving, hairs have dulled tips, which give the effect of stiff hair.
- You should sleep 8 hours a day. Scientists believe that periods of sleep are different for every person. It depends on your genes and many other factors. Try to listen to your body to understand what it needs.
- Urinating can reduce the pain of a jellyfish sting. This myth became very popular after an episode of Friends. But urine can’t neutralize the burning after a jellyfish sting. It will be much better to wash the affected area with clean water.
Illustrator: Mariya Zavolokina for BrightSide.me