听“阿婆”讲那些神奇的事情
作者 : 未知

  There’s a story about a guy who called his grandmother the first time he cooked a roast.“I did it just like you used to. First, I first 1)lopped of the ends of the roast, then 2)seasoned it, added onions and carrots, and put it in the oven for two hours. It was perfect.”“You cut off the ends?” she asked. “Didn’t you?” he 3)countered. “Only when the roast was too big to fit the pan,” she said.
  Old wives’ tales are like that. They may have been useful at one time and may have some truth to them, but it’s probably gotten 4)garbled in translation from one generation to the next. After all, many of these “old wives” were midwives and healers who were valued medical practitioners. We shouldn’t be surprised to find some science in their advice.
  有这么个故事。一个小伙子第一次亲手做烤肉,他打电话给外婆,说:“我都是按您以前的做法来做的。先把烤肉的边切掉,再调味,加上洋葱、胡萝卜,放进烤箱烤两个小时。效果很好。”外婆问道:“你把烤肉的边给切了?”小伙子反问:“您不就是这么做的吗?”外婆回答:“我只在烤盘装不下的时候才切的啊。”
  这就是“老妇人之谈”。它们可能曾经挺实用,也着实有些道理,但或许是在代代相传的过程中被篡改歪曲了。要知道,许多“老妇人”其实本来就是助产士、治疗师这类受人尊重的医生。所以,若是发现这些忠告的确有点儿科学依据,我们也不必太过惊讶。
   1. Cats Kill Sleeping Babies by Stealing Their Breath
  Cats have been seen 5)alternately as divine(the Egyptian goddess 6)Bastet took a 7)feline form) or evil (we all know black cats bring bad luck, right?). If the myth that cats steal sleeping babies’ breath were true, it would definitely fit in with that darker image. However, no scientific study or verifiable accounts back up such stories. How did this myth start? It’s possible that cats have 8)inadvertently contributed to 9)Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, or SIDS, in which an infant dies while sleeping for no known reason. Infants with 10)respiratory conditions or an underdeveloped wake-response reflex are known to be at greater risk of SIDS. If such a child rolled toward a cat in his sleep, or if a cat stretched a paw on the baby’s face, it might 11)impair breathing enough to cause death. Then again, the cat’s presence may have been pure coincidence.
  一、猫咪会趁宝宝熟睡时偷走他们的呼吸
  猫总是要么被奉若神明(比如古埃及化身为猫的女神贝斯特),要么被视为邪物(大家都听说过黑猫会招来噩运,对吧?)。如果猫能偷走熟睡宝宝呼吸的传说是真的,那它显然更符合后者的阴暗形象。但是,却没有任何科学研究或者确凿的依据来支撑那种说法。这种说法是打哪儿来的?有可能是因为猫在无意间引发了婴儿猝死综合症(简称SIDS),致使婴儿在睡眠中由于未知原因死亡。目前已知:有呼吸道疾病或苏醒反射系统未健全的婴儿更易患这种病。如果一个有上述病症的宝宝在睡着后滚到猫身边,或是猫把爪子伸到他脸上,那么孩子的呼吸可能会因受阻而造成死亡。当然,这也可能是纯属巧合。
   2. You Should Starve a Fever and Feed a Cold
  This old tale may be partly based on the medieval 12)theory of humours. The idea was that good mental and physical health depended on the balance of four body fluids, called humours: black bile, yellow bile, blood and 13)phlegm. A fever indicated an excess of blood, and the treatment included bleeding the patient―which, in retrospect, was not such good advice. 14)Fasting may have also been 15)prescribed as a way to slow down what seemed to be an overcharged 16)metabolism. Likewise, every 17)mucous mouthful a cold sufferer coughed up indicated an excess of phlegm. Phlegm was a 18)wintry humour, associated with depressed spirits and depressed metabolism. The logical remedy was to 19)stoke the bodily 20)furnace with food, which would also lift the spirits. When you’re sick with a cold or the flu, your body needs the nutrients of a balanced diet and energy from adequate 21)calories to fight off the infection, especially in the early stages of illness. There’s no medical advantage to undereating or overeating in either case. Staying well nourished and well 22)hydrated is the best advice.   二、挨饿治发烧,感冒得多吃
  这个古老传说或许部分基于中世纪的体液学说。其理念是身心健康取决于人体内黑胆汁、黄胆汁、血液、粘液四种体液之间的平衡。发烧是血量过甚的表现,治疗手段包括给病人放血。现在看来,这真不是什么好点子。禁食可能则是缓解新陈代谢负荷过重的方子。同样,感冒病人咳痰说明他体内粘液过多。痰是一种寒性体液,与沮丧情绪及代谢郁滞有关。合理的疗法是通过进食来助燃机能、振奋精神。患感冒或得流感时,尤其是在患病初期,你需要从均衡饮食中获取营养、摄入适量卡路里补充能量以抗击病毒。吃得过少或者太饱都对身体没好处,保证营养良好、体内水分充足才是最佳忠告。
   3. Eating Sugar Makes Kids Hyper
  Like some other myths on our list, this one has enough 23)semblance of truth to sound legitimate. Simple sugars are pure calories (i.e., energy). They’re quickly digested and sent to the bloodstream. So a rush of energy in the blood should cause a rush of activity in the body. The science of sugar metabolism tells a different story, however. When sugars enter the bloodstream, they’re first sent to the muscles and internal organs for immediate use. Excess sugars are not“worked off”. They’re stored in the liver and muscles as 24)glycogen for later use. Sugary snacks and sodas are rightly blamed for their role in 25)obesity and tooth decay. But hyper behavior is one 26)rap you can’t pin on them―unless, of course, they’re 27)caffeinated products like cola or chocolate.
  三、吃糖会让小孩亢奋
  就像我们举出的其他例子一样,这一条也是看似犹如真理般可信。单糖会被迅速消化,直接提供卡路里(即能量)并输送到血流中去。血液中突然注入一股能量理应激发身体的活跃度。但糖类代谢背后的科学理论可不赞同这一说。事实是这样的:糖进入血流后,首先会被输送到肌肉和内脏以供即时使用。剩余的糖并不会被“清货”,而是成为糖原储存在肝脏和肌肉中以备日后之需。指责含糖零食及碳酸饮料是造成肥胖和龋齿的罪魁祸首,我们有理有据。但若把亢奋行为也算上,那真是冤枉它们了,除非是像可乐或巧克力那样含有咖啡因的食物。
   4. You Lose Most of Your Body Heat Through Your Head
  You can trace this partial truth to experiments conducted in the Arctic by the United States military in the 1950s. Volunteers were adequately dressed from the shoulders down, but left bareheaded. Not surprisingly, that’s where most of their body heat escaped―up to 80 of percent of the body heat they lost, according to the earliest reports. Initially, you do lose more heat through the head―up to 50 percent, similar to what the Survival Manual says. As the activity continues, however, the blood vessels near the skin in the rest of the body 28)dilate, allowing more blood to flow throughout the body and reducing the flow to the brain. Meanwhile, the 29)proximity of the vessels to the skin cools the blood to keep you from overheating. Heat loss through the head returns to about 7 percent. It’s still a good idea to cover the head in cold weather, of course, just like every other part of your body.
  四、头部散去了身体大部分热量
  这个半带偏颇的说法可追溯到二十世纪五十年代美国军方在北极开展的实验。志愿者们从肩到脚都裹得严严实实,头却露在外面。因此,最初的报道得出“人体散逸热量的百分之八十均由头部排出”这个结论也就一点儿都不奇怪了。开始,头部散出的热量的确比较多――高达百分之五十,这个水平和《救生手册》中所描述的相近。但随着身体活动的持续,其他部位的皮肤表层血管扩张,使更多的血液流经躯干,并减低大脑中的血流量。同时,血管附近的皮肤会给血液降温以防体温过高。头部的热量散失,并降至百分之七左右。当然,天冷时最好还是戴上帽子,就像呵护身体其他部位一样做好头部保暖工作。