I can’t count the number of times I got sick as a child, only to have my mum say, “Oh, you haven’t been drinking enough water” or “it’s your own fault for not eating your fruit and veggies.”
At the time, I probably just ignored her but apparently, I should have listened, taken notes and filed them under “things you are definitely going to need to know later in life”.
Here are seven of the most common health clichés around. And it turns out your mum was right…
1. Have a crush? You’re lovesick. Seriously.
When you meet a new person and you hit it off, it’s one of the most fun stages of dating. You think about them all the time and you can’t wait to see them again. Everything is just so damn great. But this rush of the hormone oxytocin can actually have negative effects on your day-to-day life. It makes you unable to focus, eat or sleep – which then can have damaging effects on the rest of your life.
2. If you swallow gum, it will stay in your stomach. FOREVER.
This was one of those myths that someone started in primary school, probably because they only had one piece of gum left and didn’t want to go halves. While it’s unlikely, this cliché is half-true.
If you don’t swallow gum very often, you’re probably going to be fine. But if you do tend to swallow your gum a lot, it could cause a blockage in your stomach known as a ‘bezoar’, according to Dr. Nitin Gupta from Sydney Children’s Hospital.
3. Drink six to eight glasses of water a day.
You probably thought this was your mum’s way of fooling you into breaking your juice or soft drink habit but it turns out that we really do need to drink plenty of water a day. While the minimum amount required differs from person to person, according to The Mayo Clinic, the average woman needs around 2.2 litres of total fluid daily – and it makes sense for most of that to be water, as it helps flush toxins out of your body and carry nutrients to your cells.