14 Completely False Facts That Most People Believe To Be True.

This article is based on "Everyone Believes These 16 'Facts' But Unfortunately They're Complete Lies". If you're interested in reading more, check out the link at the bottom of the article. Sources for each individual fact are found under each fact.

No one likes being wrong. It makes you feel embarrassed and uneducated. But if you keep on spewing incorrect facts or poorly told stories, people will eventually stop listening to you. It's best to see the error in your ways and find out what's right and what's wrong before it's too late. Here are some widely spread facts that are, in fact, incorrect.



1. Hair and nails continue to grow even after you've died.

Different cells die at different rates but nerve cells die within three to seven minutes of the human dying. This "fact" persists because as the body dehydrated the skin retracts which may make fingernails and facial hair appear longer.

BBC

2. Men think about sex every 7 seconds.

Research from a 2011 study in Ohio shows that men actually think about sex 19 times a day, while women average at about 10 times a day. The study found that men also thought about food and sleep more which suggest that perhaps men simply think about biological functions more than women.

CBS

3. Penguins mate for life.

90% of birds are monogomous to some degree. Penguins do mate for life but if they fail to produce offspring one year or one of them dies, the birds will simply find a new mate for the next mating season.

SpotlightEnglish

4. You lose 80% of your body heat through your head.

Heat escapes from the body in the cold through whatever limb or part of the body is exposed to the elements. If you're wearing boots, pants, a coat, and gloves then heat will leave through your head. However your head only represents 10% of your body's surface area so it would be very difficult to lose almost all your body's heat through that tiny surface, especially since your other warm layers are keeping most of the heat in.

WebMD

5. Cracking your knuckles repeatedly causes arthritis.

Several studies comparing people who crack their knuckles and people who don't have concluded that cracking does not raise your risk of arthritis. However cracking does put you at risk for swollen hands, loss of strength in hands, and injury.

Harvard

6. Chameleons change colour to blend in with their surroundings.

Chameleons change colour to regulate temperature as they can't generate their own body heat. A cold chameleon may change to a darker colour to absorb heat from the sun. They also use colour changes to communicate with other chameleons for mating or aggression. Chameleon owners can learn to read the colour changes to understand the creature's mood changes.

Wired

7. Vikings wore helmets with horns.

Vikings dear wear helmets with horns on them for religious ceremonies but rarely wore them in battle. Horned helmets would have been very impractical for a warrior as they could have easily been snagged on something in battle or the enemy could have grabbed hold of them. These helmets are rarely found in burial sites and the popularity of this myth developed in artwork and drama of the Romantic Era.

HistoryRundown

8. If you accidentally swallow gum it takes 7 years to digest it.

Though gum is not broken down in the stomach in the same way that most food is, it is completely possible to digest swallowed gum. In some cases a particularly large wad of gum has become stuck to another foreign object, like a coin, and has blocked the digestive tract but this rarely happens.

KidsHealth

9. Napoleon Bonaparte was very short.

Napoleon's autopsy revealed that he was 5'7" so why do people say that he was short? A French doctor once said that Napoleon was short at 5'2" but he was using French measurements which are longer than British, and he may have been implying that the average French man was taller.

EuropeanHistory

10. Different parts of your tongue are responsible for different taste buds.

In school you were probably taught the Tongue Map: sweet taste buds at the tip of the tongue, salt and sour in the middle, and bitter at the back. This has been disproven numerous times, most recently by the discovery of a fifth taste bud: umami that tastes glutamate. The entire tongue can detect all five tastes equally.

LiveScience

11. Sugar makes you hyper.

Scientists have discovered that no evidence exists to support the claim that sugar causes hyperactivity. It can, however, lead to a slight deterioration in attention span and an increase in adrenaline which can often be mistaken for hyper-activeness.

YaleScientific

12. You can see the Great Wall of China from space.

When China's first astronaut, Yang Liwei, went to space in 2003 he reported that he couldn't see China's greatest cultural landmarks. It ends up that the Great Wall of China is not visible to the naked eye from the International Space Station or the Moon. High resolution zoomed in photos have been taken of the Wall but even these required nearly perfect conditions. If you want to see a man-made structure from space, keep your eye peeled for the pyramids at Giza instead.

UniverseToday

13. Humans just use 10% of their brain.

This 'fact' seems to have originated with American psychologist William James who said, "We are making use of only a small part of our possible mental and physical resources." People ran with this statement and thus the 10% myth was born. Research has concluded that while it's true that you don't use every single aspect of your brain 24/7, and there are times during the day when you may only be using 10%, you do use 100% of your brain over the course of an average day.

ScientificAmerican

14. You can kill someone by dropping a penny off the top of the Empire State Building.

This fact was disproved on an episode of Mythbusters. The penny's light weight, 1.5 grams, would create so much air resistance that it wouldn't reach a high enough velocity to do much damage. The person it hit might say "Ow!" but they definitely wouldn't die.

HowStuffWorks

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Redditor u/AshSpergers wanted to discuss the rules from around the world that may not make the most sense by wondering.... What's a stupid law where you live?

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