Mothers and Scientists - We’re really on the same side.

Amazing how many university study dollars go into proving advice from your mother. We have come to rely on scientific studies so much that we forget the truth in simple, age-old advice. Remember an “apple a day…” Well, eating one before a meal has helped people lose a notable amount of weight and offered amazing help with blood sugar. How about the scientific reasoning about why men like curvy women? Not only do hourglass women have more reproductive hormones but women who gain weight in their hips have smarter children. Hmm, scientific proof that opposites attract?

Now we hear that simply washing your hands with soap may be the easiest way to slow swine flu.

NYTimes.com - “A host of recent studies have highlighted the importance and the scientific underpinning of this most basic hygiene measure. One of the most graphic was done at the University of California, Berkeley, where researchers focused video cameras on 10 college students as they read and typed on their laptops.”

I should say the NYTimes does give credit to mothers twice in the article for hand washing as well as elbow sneezing. Here I’ll stop criticizing the money spent because I know university students need the experience.

Incidentally, I eat this scientific trivia up for breakfast, snack on it… It’s my favorite page in The Week magazine. It’s one of the few things I collect - scientific studies proving old wives’ tales and motherly advice. I can only assume that we seek out scientific proof and advice because we’ve all moved so far away from our mothers.

2 Comments

  1. george.hotelling.net
    Posted Fri Sep 18 07:51:06 -0800 2009 |

    I don't think it's a waste of money because while scientists are busy proving a bunch of adages true, they're also disproving a lot of adages.

    If it weren't for scientists checking things that "everyone knows" we'd still believe that stress causes ulcers, or cracking your knuckles can give you arthritis, or that you should put butter on a burn (which is a good way to turn a burn into an infected burn).

    The only way we can figure out what's real and what's not is by checking, and it only looks like a waste if the experiment confirms the popular wisdom.

  2. Georgia
    Posted Tue Oct 27 18:00:32 -0800 2009 |

    Thank you. You're right about that, although I'm surprised to be taken seriously.

    I should say, butter on a burn? My people never did that, an aloe vera leaf maybe.

    For anyone else reading, I'm still collecting!