Health Myths and Misconceptions


PAMF employee provides presentation on how to keep healthy nutrition.

Nicholas Lawrence, Staff Reporter

At the local health fair on Monday, a presentation on teen nutrition was given by multiple Sutter Health employees. Near the end, they held a segment named “Myth or Truth?” This asked multiple questions about commonly-held health misconceptions. Here are some of them.


Q : Weight equals health.

A : False. According to Jefferey Hunger, a researcher at the University of California Santa Barbara, the idea that one’s weight equals the health of the person is flawed. This may have real-world implications, because insurance companies often give incentivize for weight loss, and penalize customers that do not reach those goals. However, the weight that the insurance companies seek may not be a sure-fire guarantee of deciding someone’s healthiness. By the same token, a thin person may not always be healthy. This is contrary to the efforts of many people who have adopted drastic measures in order to attempt to reduce their weight because of the societal stigma around having higher weight.


Q : Detox diets cleanse toxins.

A : False. The body does not need assistance in order to cleanse toxins from the body. The liver and kidneys already do a fine job of cleansing toxins, so we do not need any special “shots” or concoctions that may claim to help us to be healthier. In fact, many companies that market these products are essentially scamming many mislead customers.


Q : Frozen fruits and vegetables are just as healthy as fresh fruits and vegetables.

A : True. Despite popular opinion, frozen fruits hold just as much nutrition and vitamins as freshly picked fruits. Frozen fruits and vegetables are picked at the height of their ripeness, therefore they have comparable nutritional value to their fresh counterparts. In fact, their frozen counterparts may actually be healthier than over-ripened fresh fruit. In addition, organic and non-organic fruits and vegetables have the same nutritional value. However, we do not want to discourage people purchasing items at their local farmer markets.


Many of these popular health misconceptions are very important in order to maintain a healthy and happy society. Since many of these things are false, they often hurt many people as they are often subjected to follow various behaviors that may not be beneficial to their health. Obviously, uprooting these myths are very important for our society and safety.