Myth: Starve A Fever, Feed A Cold
This is perhaps the oldest wives’ tale there is. This is one of the medical myths that “seemed” to be true at one point. The oldest known reference to this came from a 1574 dictionary written by John Withals. He noted in it that fasting is a great remedy for a fever. The idea was that eating food could help the body generate warmth during a “cold.” Therefore, eating could help you fight the cold better. This would mean you should avoid food for a fever because it might overheat your body. Yet this is completely false. It is true that your body is fighting a virus when you have a cold, and it does need proper energy to do this. This means properly eating is a good idea. However, food has no role in a fever. Keep in mind, a fever is your body’s response to fighting a virus so it’s technically a good thing.