Cold >>> Colds?!
Well, here's an interesting little subject that I don't think has been brought up before.
When I was young, growing up in China, everyone told me that being 'cold' will drastically increase your chance of catching a 'cold.' People were so convinced of this that it was essentially common 'knowledge,' and about half of my immediate family and most of my relatives still believe it. So, for a long time, I was convinced of the relationship myself. Sometimes, it felt like people were actually implying causality, such that it is a not a virus which causes the disease, but that the state of being 'cold' itself somehow makes you have a 'cold.' Yet, a short search for reliable sources online suggests to me that even a weak correlation is questionable.
Scientifically, it doesn't make any sense to me at all, because the disease is caused by a virus, so the only possible explanation I can think of is that being 'cold' weakens your immune system; even then, I only view that as a possibility because I don't know if being 'cold' affects your immune system at all.
Wiki says people with stronger immune systems actually have more pronounced symptoms because their stronger immune system is fighting the virus.
Counterintuitively, people with stronger immune systems are more likely to develop symptomatic colds. This is because the symptoms of a cold are directly due to the strong immune response to the virus, not the virus itself. People with less active immune systems—about a quarter of adults—get infected with the viruses, but the relatively weak immunological response produces no significant or identifiable symptoms.
Additionally, everyone I knew believed that you were even more likely to catch a cold if this was after some physical activity, especially if you sweat a lot or you were wet. This........makes even less sense. In fact, I didn't even have to feel 'cold;' I just had to be exposed to 'colder' air or something. Like, you guys know how it feels really good when cold air blows on you after you exercise and sweat a lot? Well, according to everyone I knew, that's when you're most likely to catch a cold.
But, the funniest belief of all was that you were also more likely to get sick if you exposed your bellybutton. Now, you might be thinking, "How the hell does that work?" Someone in my immediate family explained it this way: there is an important "chi point" near the bellybutton, and if you "expose" to your bellybutton to 'cold' air, the air "goes into your body" via the bellybutton and "disrupts" your "chi center," or something like that. Lol.
When I think about it now, these are some really good examples of post hocing + confirmation bias. I can recall that whenever someone got a cold, people would attempt to refer to when they didn't put on a jacket after they exercised or didn't cover their bellybutton when they slept, one, two, or even three days ago. No one ever considered the probability of someone not being cold, not exercising, and not exposing their bellybutton at all in any three day period. No one ever thought much of it when they couldn't identify a recent event where the person was sweaty and cold. No one cared when they were 'cold,' but didn't get a cold.
Thoughts? Anyone want to defend their "chi" crap? Lol.
Our revels now are ended. These our actors, | As I foretold you, were all spirits, and | Are melted into air, into thin air; | And, like the baseless fabric of this vision, | The cloud-capped towers, the gorgeous palaces, | The solemn temples, the great globe itself, - Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve, | And, like this insubstantial pageant faded, | Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff | As dreams are made on, and our little life | Is rounded with a sleep. - Shakespeare