Five health myths Kenyans need to stop believing

Healthy living is fueled by nutrition myths, and most of these myths are based largely in fear mongering.

Getting enough water isn't just about drinking glasses of it but includes all the water in foods and drinks.

You’ve been hearing health advice ever since you were a little kid. And some of it, like being encouraged to wash your hands regularly, is important, life-long stuff you need to know.

Given that you hear this stuff your entire life and sometimes repeatedly it can be hard to weed out what’s real from what’s totally ridiculous to believe. Here are some of the biggest health myths out there.

Some people just never get sick

Sure, some people seem to have a superhuman ability to avoid illnesses when stuff is circulating, but everyone gets sick at some point. People are not impervious to infections. This can be dangerous if someone avoids vaccines or simple illness-preventing measures because they think they can't get sick.

Young people don't have heart attacks

While older people are more likely to have heart attacks, younger people can still have them. Heart attacks are actually becoming more common in younger people (especially women),

You need to drink eight glasses of water a day

The eight glasses dogma has been around forever, but it’s misleading. Getting enough water isn't just about drinking glasses of it but includes all the water in foods and drinks.

Water needs are pretty individual, but it is recommended that women have around 11.5 cups of fluids a day, including from water, other beverages, and food.

You need eight hours of sleep a night

Actually, it is recommended that adults have seven to nine hours of sleep each night in order to function at their best. But everyone is different: Some only need five or six hours a night, while others feel like they need nine.

Thin = healthy

This one has been out there for a while but, luckily, less people are believing it these days. We really have very little control over the size and shape of our bodies, and these things don't determine our health. Research by the International Journal of Cardiology suggests that overweight people who are active can be healthier and live longer than slimmer people who don’t exercise.

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