Archive for the Debunking Myths Category

MYTH: Oxygenated Water is something special

Posted in Bullshit, Debunking Myths, Myths, Skeptic, Uncategorized with tags , , , , on March 13, 2009 by freonirons409

Okay, a friend of mine brought this big load of crap into my ever skeptical light. So this overpriced shit water apparently contains so much oxygen it will give you more strength, agility, and overall performance enhancement when you drink it. But the fact is that unless you are a fish, you aren’t getting anything except water. Your lungs are the only way you get the oxygen needed to power your body not your digestive tract. That’s why we drown when we are submerged in water! I mean really, think about this before you buy into it. If you could get oxygen solely from drinking water, what’s stopping you from just drinking a shit-load of it when you are drowning at the bottom of a lake? The bottom line is: you can’t get oxygen from a bottle of water. And not only that, you can’t get any extra oxygen than you normally do because the body wont allow it–or will get very sick trying. Taking a bunch of deep breaths isn’t going to cause anything but you passing out; evolution of our bodies and lungs has prevented this. “According to the [research], the are only two ways to carry oxygen in the blood…when it is bound to hemoglobin or dissolved in the plasma. In most people hemoglobin is already 97 to 98 percent saturated with oxygen.” (About.com Sport Medicine). In fact, too much oxygen has been proven to be bad for you! Take oxygen bars for example. This is a place where you pay for oxygen and sit and breathe it in much like a regular bar. This oxygen is 95% pure whereas we typically breath 21% pure air on a daily basis. But this has been proven to actually be harmful to you: http://www.scienceblog.com/cms/oxygen_bars_may_be_harmful_to_your_health.

Also, let me point out that there is only so much oxygen you can compress into a bottle of water. It certainly is not enough to even equal a single breath. And even if you got it in there, as soon as you opened the bottle it would all escape back into the air. I mean, you should take serious offense to this! These companies think you are a complete moron; dumb enough to buy into something that is completely obvious. And the sad thing is that LOTS of people buy into this. Don’t be another sucker.

So, rest assured you are not missing anything by not drinking this miracle drink. This is just another drink fad that has no merit or scientific research to back the medicinal claims. It is bottled snake oil; just a modern reject from a traveling medicine show. Be sure to get plenty of regular water because dehydration can cause muscle fatigue and all kinds of other problems, but don’t forgot to breath while doing so or you will FUCKING DIE!

Here’s some more stuff to check out (although a simple google search will give you plenty of debunking facts–I had to really try to find an actual article or page supporting this hunk of shit).

http://www.chem1.com/CQ/oxyscams.html

http://www.thefactsaboutfitness.com/news/bottled-water.html

MYTH: Mosquitoes Can Only Fly 10 ft from the ground.

Posted in Bullshit, Debunking Myths, Myths, Skeptic, Uncategorized with tags , , , on September 30, 2008 by freonirons409

I had a friend call me about this myth and I wasn’t really sure about it because I have never really heard it about it until recently. Without doing any research I would say that this is definitely a myth, but also has some merit. If you think about it, why would a mosquito really need to fly higher than ten feet? All it’s prey is usually on the ground running around, so venturing up any higher would actually be very dangerous, especially at night when bats are out hunting. Also, mosquitoes are very light weight, and winds tend to be stronger the higher up one gets, so there is another peril for the high flying mosquito. One must also ask one’s self what kind of mosquito is this myth attached to? There are over 2700 species of mosquito in almost every country in the world. Are they all limited to 10 feet? In the Amazon the trees cover practically everything and stand sometimes hundreds of feet in the air. Wouldn’t a mosquito need to get up there from time to time since that is where all the food hangs out?

But some simple research into the matter led me to this statement located at mosquito.org: “In general, mosquitoes that bite humans prefer to fly at heights of less than 25 ft. Asian Tiger Mosquitoes have been found breeding in treeholes over 40 feet above ground. In Singapore, they have been found in apartments 21 stories above ground. Mosquitoes have been found breeding up to 8,000 feet in the Himalayas and 2000 feet underground in mines in India.

And here’s a picture of a swarm of mosquitoes flying about a hundred feet above Lake Malawi in Chitimba, Malawi.

So there you go folks. Mosquitoes can fly as high as they damn well please, as long as something doesn’t kill them.

MYTH: The average person swallows 8 spiders every year

Posted in Bullshit, Debunking Myths, Myths, Skeptic on September 18, 2008 by freonirons409

I actually fell for this one for a while and was kind of disappointed if not a little bit embarrassed when I found out the truth. Well the truth is that the statistic was a complete fabrication that was introduced in an article by Lisa Holst in PC Professional (January 1993) to prove that people will believe anything they read on the internet. She came up with the “fact” from a book printed in 1954 called Insect Fact and Folklore by Lucy Clausen and from there it spread exactly how she had intended it to. To this day is remains one of the most widely circulated pieces of misinformation on the internet.

Now here’s a twist, I came across this person’s blog and apparently the information about the Article above just might be a fabrication by Snopes (which is where I learned of this myth being false). The guy in this blog could find no record of a writer named Lisa Holst or the magazine PC Professional. Even the library of congress couldn’t find such a magazine. This article may not have checked out but the 1954 book does and while Lisa Holst may not have actually started the rumor, it’s just a rumor nonetheless, and not an actual statistic with any merit. So you can sleep a little more soundly, unless you enjoyed the thought of eating spiders.

MYTH: Jesus was born on December 25th

Posted in Bullshit, Debunking Myths, Myths, Skeptic, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on September 18, 2008 by freonirons409

Hey, guess what? Christmas is a complete lie, too! The truth is that christians forgot Jesus’ birthday a long time ago and have been celebrating it at different times ever since. Some groups chose January 6th, April 21st, May 1st, and it wasn’t until the 4th century that the church chose the winter solstice as the approximate time of his birth. They did this because during the winter solstice the day is very short and each day after gets increasingly long, and the Christians saw this as a sign of good things to come. But actually this time is a Pagan celebration of the rebirth of the sun that the Christians stole and made their own. They not only stole the date, but pretty much all the phrases, stories, and circumstances surrounding the birth,life,and death of Jesus were stolen from other gods that the pagans would pay tribute to on this day. The Persian Pagans worshiped Mithra and Mithraism was a competitor to Christianity until the 4th century. But Mithra’s story is the exact same as Jesus: born of a virgin at night in a manger around shepherds and gift carrying Magi. Mithra was said to have traveled performing miracles, and so on. Just like Jesus.

Dionysus is another savior-god whose birth was observed on December 25th. He was worshiped throughout much of the Middle East and had a center of worship in Jerusalem in the 1st century BCE. Some ancient coins have been found in Gaza with Dionysus on one side and JHWH (Jehovah) on the other. In later years, his flesh and blood were symbolically eaten in the form of bread and wine. He was viewed as the son of Zeus, the Father God.

Jesus’ life and death were also not very original because the same story had been told many times before. Take for example Apollonius of Tyana who was a Greek philosopher and is believed to have been born three years before Jesus. Apollonius was a messiah to a large following of people, was killed for teaching his beliefs, was resurrected three days later, and so on. Exact same story, different guy. Appolonius was actually a lot better than Jesus if you ask me. Go here to read more about him or go here to see more parallels.

And the list goes on and on. So not only did Christians steal the date for the birth of their own Lord and savior, but they stole every facet of the story itself. And you know what? Mithra and Dionysus were all made up legends and are considered myths today…sooooooo, is it maybe possible that Jesus was just the result of Christians murdering and destroying everything that contradicted them until Jesus just became the winner in what is a collective bullshit story? You can make that decision on your own but you might as well be celebrating Santa Claus’s birthday on December 25th. That would be more historically accurate and certainly have more truth behind it based on what is practiced today.

For more information, see http://www.religioustolerance.org/xmas_sel.htm

MYTH: Pirates were rowdy drunks who buried treasure and traveled on huge ships

Posted in Bullshit, Debunking Myths, Myths, Skeptic with tags , , on September 18, 2008 by freonirons409

Well I hate to shatter your dreams of being a pirate, riding around on big wooden ships, drinking rum, fighting and burying treasure but pretty much all conceptions about pirates are completely false. All the way down to walking the plank.

Few (if any) pirates ever used a plank to force people off of a ship. When a ship was captured the crew had the option of joining them or jumping overboard. There wasn’t any kind of weird ceremony where they blind folded crew members poked them in the butt with a sword until they reached the end of a board. That’s a waste of time, and pirates where all about business.

Pirates certainly never buried treasure and no pirate would trust his captain to bury it for him. While there may be some isolated cases of buried treasure, it is certainly not something a pirate just did all the time for the hell of it. The men who became pirates did so because they wanted money, not to bury it, and as soon money was made it was divided and then they would typically gamble with it or bring it home. They would have thought of it as insane to bury their earnings on some deserted island, or anywhere.

If you’ve seen a pirate movie you have probably seen the pirates swinging from ropes, storming a ship with reckless abandon, swords swinging, pistol packing, cannons blasting. Again, another misconception. Most ship captains owned their cargos and had everything fully insured so they would typically just surrender when pirates would show up as not to risk the lives of them and their crew. It was just a part of doing business, and they accepted it as something that just happens. If only the RIAA would have the same mentality.

Another common thing associated with pirates is the skull & crossbones, or “Jolly Roger,” flag that would fly all the time from their ships and has become synonymous with pirates. The truth is that pirates used lot’s of flags for different reasons. The Jolly Roger was used to coerce ships to allow them to board. It was their, “we mean business flag.” Some pirate ships would actually fly a flag with an hourglass on it that signified that “time was running out.” And it is believed that the term Jolly Roger comes from a mispronunciation of the Arabic word, Ali Raja, which means “King of the Sea.”

And the big ships just did not make sense for what pirates did. Having a big ship is hard to maneuver and is certainly not ideal for catching or escaping from anyone. Real pirates relied on small, swift vessels for hit-and-run attacks.

And the biggest misconception is that pirates where rough-and-tumble, dirty, drunks who loved to drink rum, rape women, hang with parrots, and fight. While there were some who were like this, most pirates were a strict order and functioned much like a small navy and operated under a small document similar to a constitution with some rules and regulations such as:

If any man shall offer to run away, or keep and secret from the company, he will be marooned with one Bottle of Powder, one bottled of water, one small arm, and shot.

That man that shall not keep his arms clean, fit for an engagement, or neglect his business, shall be cut from his share, and suffer such other punishment as the captain and the company shall think fit.

If at any time you meet with a prudent woman, that man that offers to meddle with her, without her consent, shall suffer death.

So there you go. Pirates…debunked!

Medical Myths

Posted in Bullshit, Debunking Myths, Myths, Skeptic on September 18, 2008 by freonirons409

I’m going to let Web MD take this one:
————
7 Common Medical Myths Debunked
Researchers Say There’s No Evidence for Some Widely Held Beliefs
By Miranda Hitti
WebMD Health News
Reviewed by Louise Chang, MD

Dec. 20, 2007 — Can you separate medical myth from fact? A new report may help you do just that.

Take a look at these seven medical myths, noted in BMJ (formerly called the British Medical Journal).

The debunkers include Rachel Vreeman, MD, a fellow in children’s health services research at Indiana University’s medical school in Indianapolis.

1. Medical Myth: Drink at least eight glasses of water per day.

Reality: There’s no evidence that you have to drink that much water to assure adequate fluid intake — and drinking too much water can be unhealthy.

2. Medical Myth: We use only 10% of our brains.

Reality: Most of the brain isn’t loafing. Detailed brain studies haven’t found the “non-functioning” 90% of the brain.

3. Medical Myth: Hair and fingernails continue to grow after death.

Reality: Hair and fingernails don’t keep growing after death. But it may seem that way because dehydration can make the skin shrink back from hair and nails, making them look longer.

4. Medical Myth: Reading in dim light ruins your eyesight.

Reality: Dim light isn’t great for focusing, but it’s “unlikely to cause a permanent change in the function or structure of the eyes,” Vreeman’s team writes.

5. Medical Myth: Shaving causes hair to grow back faster or coarser.

Reality: “Shaving does not affect the thickness or rate of hair regrowth,” write Vreeman and colleagues. But shaved hair doesn’t have the fine taper of unshaved hair, making it seem coarser.

6. Medical Myth: Mobile phones are dangerous in hospitals.

Reality: “Rigorous testing in Europe found minimal interference and only at distances of less than one meter [about 3.28 feet],” write the researchers. But that may be a point of controversy. In September, Dutch doctors reported that cell phones may interfere with critical care equipment and shouldn’t be used within a meter of medical equipment or hospital beds.

7. Medical Myth: Eating turkey makes people especially drowsy.

Reality: Turkey isn’t all that rich in tryptophan, the chemical linked to sleepiness after eating turkey. But eating a big, decadent meal can cause sleepiness, even if turkey isn’t on the menu.

MYTH: S.O.S. stands for “save our ship”.

Posted in Bullshit, Debunking Myths, Myths, Skeptic on September 18, 2008 by freonirons409

I’m not sure where this one came from but it kind of makes sense. But S.O.S does not stand for Save Our Ship, although I guess it could. It’s actually not really an acronym for anything. SOS is just really easy to transmit in morse code. This signal [SOS] was adopted simply on account of its easy radiation and its unmistakable character. There is no special signification in the letter themselves, and it is entirely incorrect to put full stops between them [the letters]. All the popular interpretations of “SOS,” “Save or Ship,” “Save Our Souls,” or “Send Out Succour” are simply not valid. Stations hearing this distress call were to immediately cease handling traffic until the emergency was over and were likewise bound to answer the distress signal. SOS in morse code is: three dots, three dashes, three dots.