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Tales of Old…

Still Told…

Have you been told ‘an apple a day keeps the doctor away’ or not to go out with wet hair because you’ll catch a cold? How many of these old wives tales are gospel and which ones are just plain silly?

DON’T OPEN AN UMBRELLA INDOORS…

This superstition actually dates back to Victorian times where umbrellas could violently pop open and the metal spokes would injure somebody or break objects. The legend has lived on to this day – although, thankfully, umbrellas’ mechanisms have significantly improved. Probably best to stick to this one however, as you could still have someone’s eye out in a confined space!

CATCHING A COLD…

If you’re in a rush, many people leave the house with wet hair, letting it naturally dry, while their parents recite the familiar ‘you’ll catch a cold’ at them. There is only one real way of catching a cold, and that’s by coming into direct contact with the virus itself. There is no evidence that being cold will give you a cold, so this is a hair-brained idea!

CARROTS HELP YOU SEE IN THE DARK…

Although carrots contain vitamin A, which is good for your eyes, eating lots of them will not improve your vision in the slightest. Rumours seem to say that this tale originated during the Second World War when it was said British airmen had excellent night vision from eating the orange veg to stop the Germans discovering that the British were using radar.

CRACKING YOUR KNUCKLES CAUSES ARTHRITIS…

The only thing about this myth which is true is the knowledge that it is bad for you. Continually cracking your knuckles results in a loss in strength of your grip and can cause swelling. It doesn’t cause arthritis but it is extremely irritating nonetheless – so stop doing it!

SITTING TOO CLOSE TO THE TELEVISION WILL GIVE YOU SQUARE EYES…

Remember this being said to you when you were a child? This is, unsurprisingly, a complete myth and will not damage your eyesight at all. Perhaps our parents were just using it as an excuse to make us watch less TV, or perhaps they based it on the studies that show too much TV will make children overweight, aggressive and slower in school? Who knows?

 

Written by Kelly Wickham