Dr. YouTube Will See You Now

YouTube, with over 80 million videos, has become a popular resource for health information. But is the information provided helpful?

This video has had over 81,000 hits. In his 5 minute lecture, the expert describes:

1. The need to take Cod liver oil with vitamin A to prevent a vitamin D overdose.

2. How the real danger in tanning beds is not the ultraviolet light, but rather an electromagnetic field from magnets.

He goes on to describe how this “radiation” or “rays” or “field” (he cannot decide) causes “significant disruption in your energy field … and increases your risk of cancer.” He advises you to find a tanning beds that uses electronic rather than magnetic sources, because electronic tanning beds are “very beneficial” to your health.

OK.

First, in order to overdose on vitamin D, a healthy adult would have to take about 50 vitamin D tablets (50,000 IU) a day for months. There is no relationship between vitamin A intake and vitamin D absorption.

Second, there is no evidence that magnetic fields are dangerous. MRIs generate magnetic fields 45,000x greater than the earth’s magnetic field. (A new MRI can generate 9.4 T, which would be over 280,000x stronger than the earths magnetic field!) There is no evidence that even these superpowerful magnetic fields increase your risk for any type of cancer.

It is, however, well documented that ultraviolet light is carcinogenic. Tanning beds cause premature aging, discoloration of your skin, and increase your risk for developing melanoma.

Physicians need to take better advantage of online media to educate people and consumers need to develop critical thinking skills. Just because an “expert” gives a lecture on YouTube, does not mean the information isĀ helpful (although I did find it entertaining).

I need to get a video camera ….

2 thoughts on “Dr. YouTube Will See You Now

  1. Do you take requests?

    I’ve always wanted to know why I seem prone to red wine-induced dying of my lips. I think it has to do with chapped lips, but it takes days to scrub it off and it’s closer to the oral mucosa than I would expect for lip chapping.

    Thought it might be timely with the approaching holidays.

    -K

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