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Summer myth fact check: do you get brown in the shade?
"Mosquitoes like sweet blood" or "Warm drinks quench thirst better than cold ones": Such "wisdom" can often be heard. But are these just summer myths or is there something in these statements? A fact check gives an overview.
Summer myths in the fact check
Especially now in the warm season you can hear a lot of old kitchen wisdom. It is said that mosquitoes love sweet blood, or you get severe abdominal pain when drinking water after eating cherries. You can also hear that you can get brown in the shade on the perhaps last hot days of this summer. But what is it about such statements? Are these all just summer myths? In a message from the dpa news agency, some such claims are subjected to a fact check.
You turn brown even in the shade
What is it about the claim that you can brown in the shade? "That's right," said dermatologist Reinhard Mrotzek, who is organized in the Federal Association of German Dermatologists. "In the shade you still get 50 percent of the UV dose." So you get color there, but more slowly and gently. "It doesn't matter whether you are sitting under a tent roof or a tree," explained the expert. Since window glass also allows part of the sunlight to pass through, office workers could also get a tan while working. To the assumption that one gets a lot browner after a sunburn, the dermatologist said: "That is rubbish, of course." Rather, this would destroy important skin cells and pigments that tanned would not even be formed. It should not be forgotten that each sunburn is added to your own skin account and increases the risk of skin cancer.
Should you avoid black clothes?
According to the dermatologist, there is no difference between black and white when it comes to clothing - at least with regard to UV protection. "It is not the color of the clothes that matters, but how tightly they are woven." However, a black T-shirt is more likely to sweat: "I think dark clothes tend to warm up." According to experts, however, there are some mosquitoes that like dark blue or black clothing.
How to keep annoying mosquitoes away
And what about the claim that mosquitoes love sweet blood? "This is really a myth," said biologist Julian Heiermann from the Nabu conservation association in Berlin. "But some people are stung more often than others." According to the expert, this is mainly due to the scent: "There is a certain substance in sweat that attracts mosquitoes. Some produce more of it. ”A recent study by British researchers also found that genes and not sweet blood are responsible for attracting mosquitoes. According to Heiermann, nutrition also does little to help: garlic and onions could keep people at a distance, but not the gnats. However, many experts see it differently and advise, among other things, garlic as a natural home remedy for mosquitoes. Essential oils can also help against annoying mosquitoes.
Drink hot or cold? And how much of it?
On the question of whether warm drinks help better against the heat than cold drinks, Bernhard Watzl, nutritionist from the Max Rubner Institute in Karlsruhe, explained: "Cold drinks cause the body to produce heat." And further: "I think it would be cheaper to consume the warm drinks. ”However, it has not been sufficiently researched whether they really are better than an ice-cold spritzer. “It is important to drink enough on hot days.” How much water we should drink depends, among other things, on temperatures and activities. In summer it can be as little as three liters a day. But is it true that you shouldn't drink water after eating cherries or ice cream? “This may have something to do with hygiene in the past, but it cannot really be justified today,” says Watzl. "There is nothing wrong with having a drink afterwards."
Change wet bathing suit after swimming
It is not fundamentally true that you get heat-free at particularly high temperatures. It is usually up to the rectors to decide. However, students are better off than workers. "There is no right to heat-free," said a spokesman for the Federation of German Employers' Associations. However, bosses would have to protect their employees, for example through air conditioning or flextime work. The fact that you should not go out with wet hair, otherwise you will get sick, is not right either. However, if you freeze because of your wet hair, bacteria will be warded off more poorly, increasing the risk of infection. Grandmother's advice not to let yourself dry in wet bathing suits should be followed. Health experts say you should change wet swimsuits and swimming trunks immediately after swimming. As the State Pharmacy Chamber in Hesse announced, this reduces the risk of cystitis. Accordingly, cold and wet reduce blood circulation and thus promote the spread of bacteria that can get into the bladder. (ad)