The healthy truth: Debunking one myth at time

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By Kendal Davids

This article is exclusive to the Online Edition 10 of VARSITY News.


With the rise of trendy healthcare, living healthy has never looked so appealing. Thousands of insta-fit influencers have flooded Instagram and Facebook with their fit-teas and sculpted bodies. Their plant-based natural skincare regimes and their low-fat diets seem to fit the ideas of absolute health and wellness. However, certain trends can seem so easy, almost too easy. You always seem to be just one purchase away from a more sculpted you and just one sip away from the body you been told you need.

It’s easy to simply jump on the ‘healthy’ bandwagon and buy into trends promising quick and healthy fixes, however how true are most health trends? Let’s explore and debunk a few myths.


This one might be a slightly hard one to accept for most, given its popularity.

Myth: Coconut oil is a miracle facial moisturiser.

Debunked: Although coconut oil can be used in conjunction with other natural moisturisers, it is advised to never be used on your face! The reason being that coconut oil is extremely comodogenic. The oil sits on the surface of the skin, blocking pores and forming a barrier in which nothing can enter pores and nothing can leave. The result: blocked pores that could lead to various types of acne.


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An age-old myth debunked.

Myth: Washing my face with hot water will open my pores.

Debunked: Although washing your face with warmer water will help increase blood flow to the skin’s surface, the pores themselves won’t be any more open. The use of warmer water does, however, help remove the sebum (the skin’s natural oil) that has built up in the pores.

Always opt for luke-warm water when washing your face as hot water can irritate sensitive skin.


A cup of truth for the tea-lovers.

Myths: Green-tea is naturally caffeine-free and way healthier than black tea.

Debunked: Let all the tea-lovers unite and agree that the tea competition ends now. Not all types of green tea are caffeine-free. While not containing nearly as much caffeine as coffee, green tea does naturally contain caffeine. The amount of caffeine you’d be sipping can vary depending on the preparation of the tea and its form.

Sit back and unwind with a cup of tea because even though green tea does contain caffeine, it has also proved to contain added benefits of L-theanine, an amino acid proven to help keep us calm and concentrated.


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This one is quite hard to swallow.

Myths: I can simply sip my way to a slimmer figure.

Debunked: Despite what the Kardashians might have you believe, one cannot simply drink tea and expect to slip off the weight like a magical alternative to exercise. As tempting as this is to believe and how we wish it were true: losing weight is more complex than that. Tea in itself has been proven to have numerous health benefits, however, it needs to be combined with other weight-loss regimes. By also incorporating a balanced diet and exercise regime, you’re one step closer to your weight-loss goal.


The verdict is still out on this one.

Myth: If I exercise a specific part of my body, I will lose weight in only that part.

Debunked: Debunking this myth doesn’t mean that you should skip leg day but rather to ease your unrealistic expectations.

Weight-loss happens when the body uses its fat reserves to provide you with the energy you need. By exercising and burning more calories than you can store, weight-loss is almost inevitable. However, this weight loss happens all over the body and not just in that specific spot you’d wish to slim.

It, however, doesn’t hurt to continue with your basic cardio and spot training attempts if general weight-loss is your ultimate goal.


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