Remember, do your research before you post…

3 minute read

July 18, 2020, 8:55 PM

Sometimes, people will share anything on social media without giving a second thought to just what they’re sharing.  Recently, with coronavirus all over the news, a few folks that I know shared this:

Claims regarding the pH of coronavirus and various food items

You really have to wonder where some of these claims come from.  I imagine that most of it gets pulled out of a very dark place, if you get my drift.  In any case, this is the kind of stuff that you just dismiss more or less out of hand because the claims being made are just that ludicrous – unless you didn’t pay attention in science class, that is.

For those of you who didn’t pay attention in science class, pH is the measure of the concentration of hydrogen ions in an aqueous solution (dissolved in water), ultimately determining how strong of an acid or a base (alkaki) something is.  The scale runs from 0 to 14, with 0 being the strongest acid possible, 7 being neutral (i.e. pure water), and 14 being the strongest base possible.  If you remember pouring liquids into another liquid in a test tube, watching it change color, and then interpreting what color you got, you were measuring the pH of a solution.  Likewise, if you ever dipped litmus paper into a liquid and then interpreted the color that the paper turned, you were measuring pH.  We use things from all over the pH scale in daily life, though you wouldn’t want to eat a lot of it.

All of that said, let’s debunk the claims in the original post.

First, we can dismiss the claim about the pH of the virus out of hand, since a virus isn’t something that would have a pH.  Therefore, the claim that we just need to eat more alkaline foods in order to beat coronavirus is also nonsense, because it’s built on a false claim.

Second, the pH numbers that are given are way off.  Yes, anything above 7 on the pH scale is considered alkaline, but it stops at 14.  Therefore, anything that is above 14 can be dismissed out of hand.  Additionally, I found it amusing that citrus fruits were listed as “alkaline”.  After all, lemons, limes, oranges, tangerines, and other citrus fruits are generally acidic.  That’s where that sour flavor comes from.

Looking at the actual pH of these items, you might notice a trend:

Notice a trend here?  Not a single one has a pH above 7.  All of them fall on the acid side of the scale, with lemons and limes being the most acidic, and avocadoes being the least acidic (but make no mistake, they are still acidic).

And then lastly, anything that people share that tells you to share it widely is usually the sort of stuff that specifically should not be shared, because 99 times out of 100, it’s absolute garbage.

I suppose that the moral of the story is to do your research and vet your facts before you share them.  Because when people don’t vet their facts and share garbage like this, I start to lose respect for them, and I don’t like when that happens.  Even more so when someone posting this crap deletes my comment debunking their “facts” and doubles down on being ignorant.  It bothers me.

All in all, if people would stop sharing easily debunked stuff and doing their research like they should, the world might be a little bit smarter place overall.

Categories: COVID-19, Social media