Top 10 Common Misconceptions

You’d be surprised at the number of so called facts circulating popularly among common society that are simply not true. Belief in these falsehoods is nothing to be ashamed of, I was surprised myself by many of the baffling cases I came across during my time researching this list.


10. You Need 8 Glasses of Water Per Day

I’ve been confronted with this one many times in the past, but it was not until recently that I discovered the truth, in all of its life altering magnitude. Although there is little to state that drinking this much water every day has any detrimental effects, failing to do so is unproven to cause any direct harm either. For many years it was considered fact, widely due to a 1945 study by the Health and Nutrition Board which declared it necessary to consume 1 millimetre of water per single calorie of food, the recommended 1,900 calories equating to some 64 ounces (approx. 8 average size glasses) per day. Turns out they forgot to include the water consumed as content in food in their calculations- rendering their research inaccurate.


9. Marie Antoinette said ‘Let Them Eat Cake’

Marie Antoinette was the wife of French King Louis XVI, the final ruling Monarch of France who was deposed and executed during the Revolution. You may be aware of this rather famous phrase she was said to have uttered amid the harsh times the French people faced in the years leading up to the revolution, in supposed response to the news that the citizens were starving to the point of having no bread. Despite it being a cool little historic fact were it true, there is no evidence towards her ever having said it. Some believe the quote was a work of fiction, intended to highlight the distance and pomposity of the upper classes at the time.


8. Vikings Wore Horns on their Helmets

In pretty much every image shown to us throughout our lives of a typical flock of Vikings- whether it be in school as a child or even on a billboard for the latest Viking containing blockbuster, they have horns on their helmets. Well guess what? We’ve all been lied to. Whilst there is research to suggest that early Northern European peoples did frequent the fun activity of putting weird things atop their helmets, many believe this behaviour was typically in relation to religious belief and ceremony; and in no way specific to the Vikings- or horns as the choice enhancer for that matter.


7. Cracking your Knuckles will give you Arthritis

We’ve all heard it, the solemn warning that cracking those knuckles can and will lead to future joint and tendon problems, namely arthritis. This, on a basic level, does make some literal sense as it wouldn’t be so hard to imagine the pressure you put on your knuckles when cracking them could be detrimental towards their well-being. There is no real scientifically based evidence to support this urban myth however- with numerous cases of in depth research instead leaning more in the other direction, in favour of the tendency being more likely to aid the joints.


6. Frequent Shaving Encourages Hair Growth

Up until recently (about 10 minutes ago actually) I was under the firm belief that frequent shaving helped to build the integrity of the beard. Turns out this is completely untrue, a revelation known since the conduction of several studies dating from as long ago as the 1920’s. As hair growth is determined mostly by the follicles under the skin, there is no way that severance of the dead hair above the skin can affect the overall strength or speed of growth.


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