Most old wives’ tales are simply myths. Nobody actually believes that dropping an umbrella on the floor signifies an impending murder or that Sparrows carry the souls of the dead. The problem is that we are so used to being cynical we now ignore the few old wives’ tales that are actually accurate.
- Don’t swim after eating, or you’ll get cramps
Imagine the time wasted sitting by the poolside waiting for your food digest. Mums have been telling their children not to swim after eating since the 1940s.
Fact: When you eat and then begin rigorously working out, the blood which should be helping with digestion gets redirected to your legs and arms, causing a cramp or stitch.
- Chocolate will give you acne
It is believed that if you eat lots of chocolate, more acne would appear on your skin.
Fact: This myth might have originated when scientists found that overactive sebaceous glands produce a fatty material called sebum, which can cause acne.
- The gray hair myth
If you pluck a grey hair, two more will grow back in its area.
Fact: Grey hair can proliferate rapidly, so it’s natural that after you see one gray hair, you begin seeing all of them over your head.
- Bad dreams after eating cheese
Have you ever eaten a cheesy pizza for dinner and then have a bad dream that night?
Fact: This has a place in folklore. But in addition, it has a place in science too. Some scientific theories imply that the bacteria and fungi components of cheese are the perpetrators. These include components that have the potential to change dreams.
- Red skies at night, shepherd’s joy
Red skies at night is a shepherd’s joy… Is this simply one of those stupid old wives’ tale?
Fact: Based on the Library of Congress there’s definitely a scientific explanation for it. When there’s a red sky at night, it suggests high pressure from the west. Meaning good weather will follow.
- Bananas make boys
Let’s say you and your partner want a male offspring. You don’t need IVF just eat loads of bananas.
Fact: An extensive study by Oxford University found high potassium consumption around breakfast time raises your likelihood of having a boy. From a sample of 740 moms, the scientists discovered that people on a banana diet have a fifty-six percent probability of having a male child, compared to forty-five percent on another diet.
- Fat people are happier
We know that fat men are the life of the party, but no matter how frequently we learn about the connection between obesity and depression, we still find happy fat people everywhere.
Fact: Guess what? A study published recently found that the gene FTO increased the threat of obesity while reducing the chances of depression in specific individuals.
- Carrots and the eye
Carrots help improve your eyesight.
Fact: Carrots include beta-carotene, and this releases vitamin A, a chief component in a healthy, functioning eye.