9 Things to Stop Worrying About

In the old days, health misinformation would spread slowly. Not today.
chicken-soup-sick

Credit: Corbis

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Feed a cold, starve a fever

The old wives’ tale has been a staple since the 1500s when a dictionary master wrote, “Fasting is a great remedie of feuer.”

The Truth: “Colds and fevers are generally caused by viruses that tend to last seven to 10 days, no matter what you do,” says Rachel Vreeman, MD, a fellow in Children’s Health Services Research at the Indiana University School of Medicine in Indianapolis. “And there is no good evidence that diet has any effect on a cold or fever. Even if you don’t feel like eating, you still need fluids, so put a priority on those.” If you’re congested, the fluids will keep mucus thinner and help loosen chest and nasal congestion.

Next: Fresh is always better than frozen

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