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Mom’s Health Advice: Fact or Fiction

Does Mom Really Know Best?

Moms play a vital role in keeping their families healthy. From making nutritious meals to caring for sick kids, moms seem to have a solution, and a cautionary tip, for just about everything. But should we take that advice? Let’s separate fact from fiction on some of the most common health advice we receive from moms, proving that mom is (almost) always right.

Health Advice: Fact or Fiction?

#1: An apple a day keeps the doctor away

Fact! While eating an apple a day won’t prevent you from catching a cold, they may reduce your risk of developing cardiovascular disease, strokes and certain types of cancer because they’re rich in antioxidants and flavonoids.  

#2: Eating dinner after 7pm is bad for your health (and your waistline)

Fact! Research suggests that individuals who frequently eat late at night tend to have a higher body mass index (BMI) than those who eat earlier in the day. Your body has to work harder to digest food and regulate your blood sugar and other digestive hormone levels when you eat later in the day and can negatively impact your sleep.

#3 You should wait 30 minutes (or more) to exercise after eating

Fiction! This varies by individual and also depends on the amount and type of food you consume. For some, a light snack 15-30 minutes prior to an activity may not affect performance at all. For others, exercising on a full stomach can cause a variety of unpleasant symptoms including cramping and upset stomach.

#4: Not wearing a coat will make you sick

Fact! While your coat may not prevent you from being exposed to germs, it is harder for your body to fight off a potential virus when you are shivering. This is because the immune cells found in your nose and lungs do not function as well in colder weather.

#5: Sitting too close to the TV can damage your eyes

Fact! You may not go blind from sitting near the television or staring at a computer screen or mobile device, but you are increasing your risk of developing certain eye conditions. Such conditions may include eye strain, fatigue, macular degeneration or retina damage.  

#6 The first frost provides allergy relief

Fact – and Fiction! Colder temperatures can destroy some environmental allergens, like ragweed, however, others such as dust and mold thrive in the winter months.

#7 Cracking your knuckles causes arthritis

Fiction! In general, occasionally cracking your knuckles (or other joints) is harmless and does not directly cause arthritis. However, you should avoid repetitive cracking of any of your joints, especially if pain develops. Pain could indicate an underling issue within the joint such as inflammation, loose cartilage or other injury.

There’s no doubt that moms have a lot of great advice. But for those times you need more information on how to stay proactive about your health and keep your whole family well, or to schedule an appointment with a DuPage Medical Group physician, please visit www.dupagemedicalgroup.com.

Topics and Subtopics: Children's Health & General Health

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