There are lots of myths about some common types of health issues that are circulating around the internet. With so much information at our finger tips all the time, it’s easy to self-diagnose or get caught up in the latest diet fad without knowing the real science behind these health issues. Let us set the facts straight on a few common misconceptions:
This seems to be a big one as of late, mostly because gluten is linked to carbs, and carbs have always been an avoided part of any diet plan. But what’s the real difference between gluten intolerance vs celiac? Celiac is a real disease that is diagnosed by a medical professional. People with celiac have an actual allergy to gluten, which causes them a whole bunch of health problems if eaten. Gluten sensitivity is not a real medical condition as diagnosed by a doctor. A sensitivity is not an allergy. Those with a sensitivity are still able to eat gluten, and they might get a little bloated afterwards, but they don’t have the same level of serious reaction.
MSG and Cancer
MSG is a popular flavor enhancer that’s gotten a lot of bad press recently with claims that it is tied to cancer. While this seems to be the current popular opinion, there are no definitive facts showing this link. Researchers have not found that MSG causes cancer and it’s still recognized by the FDA as being safe to use. Some people may have a sensitivity to MSG, but there is no proof of any long term health issues being caused from it.
Detox diets are another fad that just seem to be popping up everywhere. There are a bunch of detox teas, coffees, and juices that promise to help purify the body of toxins, but do they actually work? Yes and no. From a medical perspective, you don’t really need to detox your body – our bodies are built to get rid of toxins all on their own without requiring any extra help. As such, we don’t need any of these magical purification potions to cleanse ourselves. A healthy lifestyle and eating habits will take care of it. Just by avoiding sugary or processed foods you are essentially “detoxing” in that you are allowing your body to function properly and flush any toxins naturally. That being said, the majority of these detox diets do have strong diuretic properties. So, they will flush the body by increasing how much comes out of it, so in some ways this might speed up the natural detox process.
Spicy Foods and Stomach Ulcers
Another common misconception is that spicy foods cause stomach ulcers. Good news to all hot sauce lovers out there – this is not true! Stomach ulcers are caused by a loss of pH balance in the stomach, which results in an infection due to the pylori bacteria which is naturally found in the stomach. When a stomach is properly balanced, this bacteria is at a normal level and doesn’t cause any issues, however if the balance is thrown off, then bacteria can build up and cause an infection which creates the ulcer. Spicy food has nothing to do with the pH balance of the body. While spicy food can irritate an ulcer if it already exists, it’s not attributed to being the cause of one.