Wives’ tales have been passed down from generation to generation, sharing timeless information from years past. But, how many of these tales are actually true? Here we go over some of the most popular wives’ tale, going in depth on whether or not they’re actually accurate.  

Feed a Fever, Starve a Cold

Some people say to “feed a fever, starve a cold,” while others say to do the complete opposite. But, in neither situation should you ever willingly starve yourself. One of the best things to do when suffering from a fever or cold is to eat.

When you have a cold, your body needs energy to get rid of the virus. Specifically, energy that your body receives from food. For fevers, the body’s temperature rises, causing the metabolism to increase and for more calories to be burned. Eating helps replenish calories and energy.

But, many people don’t have appetites when they’re sick, and that’s completely normal. You should never force yourself to eat if you don’t feel hungry. The most important thing to do when you’re sick is to drink a lot of fluids. When sick, the body becomes dehydrated, and the more you drink, the more your body can fight both infections and viruses.

Eat Chicken Soup When You’re Sick

So, what should you eat when you’re sick? A popular wives’ tale tells that chicken soup is the best thing to eat when sick, and it’s not wrong. Chicken soup is great to eat when you’re feeling unwell. The combination of protein and liquid both gives you energy and replenishes your body. And, the steam from the soup helps open up mucus stuffed passageways.

Carrots Improve Vision

While carrots are high in nutrients and include vitamin A and the antioxidant lutein, both of which are essential for vision health, they don’t improve your eyesight. In fact, no amount of healthy foods can improve eyesight. They can only help you maintain your current eyesight health.

So, why do so many people believe this? It actually started during WWII. During the war, the British Royal Air Force came up with a tale about how their pilots had excellent night vision due to eating carrots. The story was only propaganda, to make the air force look more powerful, but the belief stuck.

But, considering this tall tale got a lot of people, especially kids, eating their carrots over the years, maybe it’s not all that bad.

Spicy Foods Cause Ulcers

For a long time, even doctors believed in this wives’ tale. But, eventually it was proven wrong. Spicy food cannot cause ulcers, nor does eating plain or bland food cure one. All spicy food does is irritate existing ulcers. Ulcers are actually caused by bacteria, and often only cause mild pain or discomfort in the beginning stages. For many people, eating spicy foods is what makes them first notice the pain. Ulcers can only be cured by antibiotics.  


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