We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.com/access.
Call anytime(888) 283-5051
Medical Myths, Lies, and Half-Truths: What We Think We Know May Be Hurting Us | [The Great Courses]

Medical Myths, Lies, and Half-Truths: What We Think We Know May Be Hurting Us

In today's information age, medical myths are all around us. And using them to make decisions about your own health can be harmful. Even deadly. That's why it's critical to understand the accuracy of medical information and discover the truth about everyday health and well-being. That's the core of this important series of 24 eye-opening lectures from an acclaimed neurologist, educator, and science broadcaster.
Regular Price:$34.95
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • $14.95/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Your Likes make Audible better!

'Likes' are shared on Facebook and Audible.com. We use your 'likes' to improve Audible.com for all our listeners.

You can turn off Audible.com sharing from your Account Details page.

OK

Publisher's Summary

True or false: Eight glasses of water a day are mandatory for staying hydrated. Vitamin C protects you from catching a cold. Natural foods are always better for you.

What do these nuggets of so-called medical wisdom have in common? They're not true. They're myths, half-truths, and misconceptions - pieces of information so familiar we take them for granted without truly considering the scientific truth behind them.

In today's information age, such medical myths are all around us. And using them to make decisions about your own health can be harmful. Even deadly. That's why it's critical to understand the accuracy of medical information and discover the truth about everyday health and well-being.

That's the core of this important series of 24 eye-opening lectures from an acclaimed neurologist, educator, and science broadcaster. Dr. Novella will give you evidence-based guidelines for good health, enhance your ability to be better informed about common medical myths, and strengthen your skills at assessing medical information and advice.

An essential aid for any home, the lecture series is divided into three sections that focus on specific aspects of health. "You Are What You Eat and Drink": Get pointed looks at proper hydration, the routine use of multivitamins, natural foods and probiotics, antioxidants, and more. "Fighting Diseases": Sort out truth from fiction regarding vaccines, the supposed link between vaccination and autism, chronic diseases, and other subjects. "Exploring the Alternatives": Investigate the claims behind herbal medicines, homeopathy, acupuncture, and other alternatives that aren't as worthwhile as they claim to be.

Disclaimer: Please note that this recording may include references to supplemental texts or print references that are not essential to the program and not supplied with your purchase.

©2010 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)2010 The Great Courses

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (170 )
5 star
 (93)
4 star
 (49)
3 star
 (20)
2 star
 (4)
1 star
 (4)
Overall
4.3 (154 )
5 star
 (81)
4 star
 (52)
3 star
 (15)
2 star
 (2)
1 star
 (4)
Story
4.4 (157 )
5 star
 (88)
4 star
 (53)
3 star
 (11)
2 star
 (2)
1 star
 (3)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Atheous Mojave desert 08-12-13
    Atheous Mojave desert 08-12-13 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    13
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    43
    2
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "It just starts with myths."
    What made the experience of listening to Medical Myths, Lies, and Half-Truths: What We Think We Know May Be Hurting Us the most enjoyable?

    Even though I keep up with health and science news, I had some false information. The dispelation of myth is just the start of the real subject of this course. To start, the information is understandable to a layperson. In addition, it was released this year, 2013 and the information is up to date. The information is biased, but only toward fact. Science based medicine is the subject here. What is known, what is not known, what works, what doesn't, and what will harm you. In the process of describing a myth (and most he gives the history of as well), he must tell you how a biological process actually works. This bolsters the the understanding of your own biology and health, and is quite educational. As I said, I keep up with science, so most myths were obvious to me, but not the biology I learned while listening. The timing of this course is perfect. There are ill people spending money, time and hope on snake oil, others buying products they don't need for health problems they don't have, or don't even exist. Harm is coming to people from mis-information. The vaccination non-controversy is covered here as well, thankfully another platform for reliable factual information. I learned much that will effect my diet henceforth. It was solidified for me that supplements are unnecessary with a healthy diet, sans a specific deficiency which should make itself readily apparent. I decided to stop using medical marijuana because his explanation of the difficulty with dosing in addition to isolation of the active ingredient(s). During the lecture on problems with supplements, I realized why my results are so varied and unreliable. And, smoking a drug is the worst way to administer it. In my case the benefit doesn't justify not only it's risks, but obvious harm. It was costing me $300 /mo. Thanks Steve!


    What other book might you compare Medical Myths, Lies, and Half-Truths: What We Think We Know May Be Hurting Us to and why?

    The "Skeptoid" podcast books by Brian Dunning, because they dispel myths as well, just from more varied subjects.


    What does Professor Steven Novella bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Obviously he delivers his material with the emphasis he intend when he wrote it. Subtle maybe, but I also listen to his podcast, so hearing him deliver the lectures was a treat.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Not at all. There is much information here. In fact, I'll most likely listen again in a month or so.


    13 of 15 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Debbie United States 06-09-14
    Debbie United States 06-09-14 Member Since 2013

    Well researched thrillers Chriton-esque. Nonfiction: Science, medical, biography, "self-help" meta cognitive sub-genre, memoir, philosophy..

    HELPFUL VOTES
    22
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    83
    41
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    3
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great Listen for Anyone!"
    Would you listen to Medical Myths, Lies, and Half-Truths: What We Think We Know May Be Hurting Us again? Why?

    Yes. Because I do not necessarily catch every detail in real time. Often I fall a bit behind because the preceding point still has my attention. Some points I wish to commit to memory. The lectures by Dr Steven Novella are AMAZING. Exciting, informative, fun.... He is a great teacher with a fluent vocabulary. I want to remember to again use some of those words. And I want to have my myths clear! Sure I will be arguing regarding some of them that are so entrenched.


    Have you listened to any of Professor Steven Novella’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Yes and this one was very worthwhile yet lighter. No regrets!


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes and repeated many "lectures/chapters".


    Any additional comments?

    Audible!! Obtain content rights for more books featuring lectures on any topic by this man!!! Amazing .... This one the lighter & easier to review of the two I have. NO ONE should be intimidated to go with this book of lectures. No dense scientific or biological knowledge is required to take away an excellent experience with information we all can use!

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Melody RED DEER, AB, Canada 12-31-13
    Melody RED DEER, AB, Canada 12-31-13 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    4
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent"
    Would you listen to Medical Myths, Lies, and Half-Truths: What We Think We Know May Be Hurting Us again? Why?

    A very organized succinct review of some of the myths and advances in medical science.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Medical Myths, Lies, and Half-Truths: What We Think We Know May Be Hurting Us?

    I particularly appreciated clarification about vitamin supplements.


    Which character – as performed by Professor Steven Novella – was your favorite?

    The narrator's voice was easy to listen to.


    Any additional comments?

    This audiobook is highly recommended for all and particularly for those of us with limited scientific background who have been confused by the plethora of conflicting health advice.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    C. Carrier LA, CA, USA 11-01-13
    C. Carrier LA, CA, USA 11-01-13 Member Since 2012

    plumloopy

    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Really enjoy Novella's lecture"
    Would you listen to Medical Myths, Lies, and Half-Truths: What We Think We Know May Be Hurting Us again? Why?

    There is such a wealth of material here that I would love to relay to others, a second (or beyond) listen would be helpful for me to retain. I will likely listen again after a few months.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I like Novella's style of lecture. He's also self effacing about the fallibility of trusting any source, including him. It does challenge things you may be comfortable believing. I'll have to be careful about wanting to pop other's belief bubbles. After all, my only authority would be this lecture.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    I listened to it during my commute and loved it. It was a nice escape from the subject matter I deal with at work or the demands of family at home.


    Any additional comments?

    If Novella had another lecture, perhaps further in depth in a medical area, I would purchase it in a second. I also enjoyed his lecture on critical thinking.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Thomas WindsorUnited Kingdom 04-04-14
    Thomas WindsorUnited Kingdom 04-04-14 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
    52
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    8
    7
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Survey of myths behind "alternative" medicine"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Medical Myths, Lies, and Half-Truths: What We Think We Know May Be Hurting Us to be better than the print version?

    This is a stupid review question from Audible because, first, it assumes the reviewer has the print version and secondly there is no print version of this work!


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Medical Myths, Lies, and Half-Truths: What We Think We Know May Be Hurting Us?

    The section on Homeopathy. It is interesting how a practice which (1) has no evidence of success and (2) no practical basis for working, still persists.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    This work has no "scenes" per se. Let me just say that if you believe in so called "alternative" medicine you may not like the point of view in this work. Dr. Novella espouses a science based approach to health which is at odds with anything that does not have properly derived evidence to suggest it works.


    Any additional comments?

    I understand other reviewers comments about the lack of citations. There are some in the lecatures but not everything Dr. Novella references is backed with a citation to research. I understand from reviews of the DVD version of the course, there is a booklet that is included and this has citations and references. All of these "The Great Courses" on Audible have the disclaimer that the works may reference materials that are not important. So this is a request for Audible and the Great Courses people to please work together to provide us with reference notes and supplemental materials for all of these courses.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Stephanie Littleton, MA, United States 12-24-13
    Stephanie Littleton, MA, United States 12-24-13 Member Since 2002

    Say something about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    55
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    173
    26
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    14
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Very well done and extremely informative"
    Any additional comments?

    Professor Steven Novella presents an entertaining and informative talk about our health. It is broken up into short chapters. Professor Steven Novella is a great speaker and has a good sense of humor. His medical knowledge and confident speaking style makes this an excellent audio book.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lotsaluck ALHAMBRA, CA, United States 09-07-14
    Lotsaluck ALHAMBRA, CA, United States 09-07-14 Member Since 2002
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    39
    2
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Beware the detractors"
    Would you listen to Medical Myths, Lies, and Half-Truths: What We Think We Know May Be Hurting Us again? Why?

    There is a plethora of information here--much more than can be retained from one listening.


    What other book might you compare Medical Myths, Lies, and Half-Truths: What We Think We Know May Be Hurting Us to and why?

    These lectures remind me of the Freakanomics series of books. In fact, I started listening to Think Like a Freak right after I finished this one, and it has some medical stories in the first chapters that could have fit well in this series.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    At the end, he lists a number of myths that some doctors still believe. Something to think about when next you visit your doctor.


    Any additional comments?

    I find it amusing to read reviews that allege that this listen has "half-truths" or that it lacks evidence. This course is all about scientific studies and evidence. Where we don't know something, he tells us. He tells us what science and medicine have been able to prove and their degree of certainty. The only reason I can discern for the detractors comments is that a pet medical myth of the reviewer (homeopathy? supplements? acupuncture?) is attacked in the book and therefore there cannot be any proof. Just because the reviewer disagrees doesn't mean the lecturer is dealing in half truths. Thus the need to de-myth-ify medicine. True, there is no list of sources in the lectures from Audible, but that is because Audible, for some reason, does not supply us with the guides that accompany the course. They say it is not necessary for enjoying the course. While it may be true that it is not necessary, it is certainly useful--especially in this case. Listeners who really want this information may need to go to the Teaching Company and buy the lectures again to get the study guide. Very sad, especially since audible does provide study guides for the Modern Scholar series of courses and for many other Audible titles as PDF files that can be downloaded. Perhaps if we lobby Audible, we can get them to include the study guides for the Great Courses as well. How about it, people?And detractors: What particular myth did you hate hearing debunked? Enquiring minds what to know.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Guy Chapman UK 05-08-14
    Guy Chapman UK 05-08-14 Member Since 2014

    Just zis Guy, you know?

    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    4
    3
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great information"
    What did you love best about Medical Myths, Lies, and Half-Truths: What We Think We Know May Be Hurting Us?

    This is a rapid overview of the field, well argued and with a well judged level of detail.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Medical Myths, Lies, and Half-Truths: What We Think We Know May Be Hurting Us?

    The section on how vaccines work is particularly good, as is the section discussing vitamin metabolism.


    Any additional comments?

    My only criticism is that it's a bit frenetic: a slightly slower pace with more examples would be preferable.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Laurie AURORA, CO, United States 10-20-13
    Laurie AURORA, CO, United States 10-20-13 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Debunk Everything"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    The course was interesting. Novella is an engaging speaker and easy to listen to. He goes through almost every form of alternative medicine you can think of and punches holes in them. Some of what he says I already knew, some of it was completely new to me. For example, I didn't know the origin of acupuncture and this story is fascinating. Now that I do know I don't have any curiosity about whether or not it will work and I have to laugh when I see people going for it. There were one or two places where I didn't completely agree with what he said and felt that he was promoting the POV of established medicine without questioning the resources too closely. You need to listen with a critical mind and use your logic. It was reassuring that his ideas about vitamins and certain herbs matched my own decisions about them, long established. I have to admit that it was disappointing that there are no unexplored medical miracles available through alternative medicine, but deep in our hearts we already knew that, didn't we?


    Would you be willing to try another book from The Great Courses? Why or why not?

    Yes, The Great Courses are almost always worth the time and effort. Many members of my family invest in the Great Courses regularly.


    Have you listened to any of Professor Steven Novella’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No, this was the first one.


    Did Medical Myths, Lies, and Half-Truths: What We Think We Know May Be Hurting Us inspire you to do anything?

    No. I was already doing everything right, but it was good to have the reassurance.


    6 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Roy Placerville, CA, United States 09-23-14
    Roy Placerville, CA, United States 09-23-14 Member Since 2006
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    38
    7
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Informative until about the halfway point"

    I enjoy this lecturer and his podcasts (Skeptics Guide); however, this course lost its allure about halfway through. I felt as though there could have been more content than was given and less time focused on things that are more commonly known as "half-truths". I ended up tuning out near the end.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-10 of 14 results PREVIOUS12NEXT

    There are no listener reviews for this title yet.

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank You

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.