February is finally here, and you know what that means: you’re either gushing over those romantic V-Day plans, or planning to slim down before summer. As you’re browsing the internet and perusing magazines for quick tips, ask yourself: myth or reality?
Have you fallen victim to these ridiculous health myths? Even the savviest in women’s health can get it wrong.
The two main areas that are myth-filled and begging to be de-bunked are all about sex and nutrition, your favorite subjects. Here’s a list of the most popular myths, and why they’re not true:
The Details on the Dirty
- Have you heard that birth control and antibiotics cancel each other out? The New York Times reported on a study by the Indiana University School of Medicine about testing myths, which found that antibiotics actually don’t have an effect on your birth control. Stop worrying about which pill is more important that day: you need both.
- The same study also debunked the myth that singles have better sex lives than married couples. According to the study results, married couples actually have more sex in a single year than single people do, since single people are more likely to be in a dry spell unless they’re regularly seeing someone. It gets better: married people are also more likely to have orgasms and give and receive oral sex.
- Have you heard that your hormones cause you to reach a sexual peak at 35? Although this statistic might make sense, considering a woman’s fertility begins to decrease after 30, multiple studies have investigated this statistic and found that there is no detectable surge of hormones. Many experts believe that women may experience better sex around this time simply because they are more comfortable with their bodies and know what they want. Let’s face it: for every mid-30s woman who believes she’s in her prime, there’s a new mom who misses the dirty days of her 20s and a newly-wed in her 50s that hasn’t felt better.
Now that you know there’s nothing stopping you in the bedroom, let’s re-consider the kitchen.
Debunking Diet Rules
- We’ve all heard that we need eight glasses of water per day. While we do need to keep our bodies well-hydrated, eight glasses is irrelevant. If your urine is bright yellow, start by adding one or two glasses of water to your daily diet. If your urine is already clear, you’re getting plenty of fluids. Keep in mind that drinks like tea and juice also help to hydrate your body. Slowly prepare your body for this alteration, so you’re not running to the loo every few minutes.
- Don’t drink juice? Maybe if it’s saturated in sugar, but there’s a difference between those sugar bombs and 100% juice. One six-to-eight ounce glass of real juice a day can actually count as a serving of fruits, and is sometimes the best way to indulge in a difficult fruit, like pomegranate. Juice can actually be full of antioxidants and boost your morning by a little sugar hype without the afternoon crash of caffeine.
- Don’t eat after 7 p.m.? Sometimes you either have to or starve: you’re a busy woman and you don’t always have time to eat before dusk. There is some substance to this myth: eating mindlessly before bed causes your body to work harder to break down food, which actually affects your sleep. But a small, healthy meal (like grilled chicken and rice) won’t keep you up at night. Just remember that calories are calories, regardless of the time of day.
Don’t just take Oprah’s word for it: research your new diet before you take it for a test drive. There’s a whole internet out there full of health myths, and hardly any of them are true. Still have questions? Ask your physician for more information.