Health Myths?

Myth: We can’t prevent cancer

Fact: According to scientists, up to 50% of cancer deaths in the developed world are caused by lifestyle (eg smoking), social and environmental factors.

Myth: We need medication to lower blood pressure

Fact: Check with your doctor first - but lifestyle choices, like a healthier diet, more exercise and managing stress better can significantly lower your blood pressure.

Myth: You need vitamin and mineral supplements to stay healthy

Fact: For most people healthy food is the best source of minerals and vitamins and contains other nutrients too. Two possible exceptions are pregnant women (who are advised to take folic acid) and the over 60’s (for whom vitamin D may sometimes be advisable).

Myth: Red wine is particularly helpful in protecting against heart attacks

Fact: Moderate alcohol consumption appears to raise ‘good’ cholesterol (HDL) and may help protect against heart attacks. However, there’s no convincing evidence that red wine is more effective than other alcoholic drinks

Myth: Cancer patients should simply rest to recover

Fact: Macmillan Cancer Support advise that studies have shown the value of frequent exercise, like brisk walking and gardening. This kind of exercise halved the risk of bowel cancer returning and cut the risk of breast cancer returning by more than a third. 

Published 27/07/2012, Review date May 2015