modern medical myths

Ever heard that we only use 10% of our brain?

“That 10% figure was invented in the 30s by ad men in America selling self-help pamphlets. ‘Scientists say you only use one-tenth of your brain,’ the ads said. ‘Wake up to your true potential.’”

Do you believe your tongue has different sections for different tastes?

“The tongue is not mapped out to taste sweet, salty, bitter and sour in select locations. The tip of the tongue is said to be reserved for the sweet taste. Yet place salt on the tip of your tongue – or anywhere, for that matter – and you will taste it.”

Is magnet therapy for real?

“Magnet therapy, with its claim that it manipulates blood flow, is just plain fraudulent. The therapy is based on the notion that the iron in our blood is magnetic. Makes sense, but it’s wrong, because iron is bound to haemoglobin. If the blood were magnetic, then we would blow up when placed under the powerful magnets of an MRI machine.”

Christopher Wanjek debunks these and other popular myths of the medical world.





  1. I just love debunking myths and inaccurate statistics. Actually, did you know that 71.4% of statistics are made up? Anyway, it’s refreshing when people can think for themselves; unfortunately, it doesn’t happen very often.

      » Comment by Cameron on December 3, 2002 @ 3:52 pm
  2. yin/yang, meridians and organ theories in tcm are false. I am soliciting help from scientific community to help in writing a book to debunk above.

      » Comment by maurice kuttab M.D. on September 2, 2003 @ 8:45 pm
  3. This isn’t a comment, so much as a question. My friends and I have recently debated something that I’d like clarification for. He states that stretching before a work-out or any type of physical activity reduces the risk of sprains and strains. I say that there isn’t any medical proof to that, and that you’re probably better off stretching after a work out. Who is right?
    Thanks alot, Wilfredo J. Feliciano.

      » Comment by Wilfredo on November 9, 2003 @ 11:01 am
  4. I’ve always heard that and it makes common sense. If I don’t stretch at all, my legs have a tendency to cramp up.

      » Comment by dan on November 10, 2003 @ 10:59 am
  5. If your prone to dislocations, stretching before a w/o could do more harm than good ;>

      » Comment by Apo on March 28, 2004 @ 5:16 pm
  6. I will second the notion that there is no medical proof that stretching prevents injuries. In fact, if yuo read the studies, they show that there is an equal incidence of injury with or without stretching. This would seem to show that stretching does nothing more then waste your energy before the event. Thanks Gaetan

      » Comment by Gaetan on May 23, 2005 @ 3:27 pm


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