Healthy Things That Actually Hurt You

A woman's feet wearing yellow flip flops in the sand(BlackDoctor.org) — The basics of staying healthy seem pretty easy to follow: Eat well, exercise, get enough sleep and you should be on the right track, right?

Surprisingly, it can be more complicated than that. Ironically, the very choices we make to benefit our health can be the same ones that can eventually hurt us.

1. Using Too Much Hand Sanitizer

If you reach for hand sanitizer any time you make contact with the outside world, you might want to take pause. Unless you’re in an especially germ-prone place like a hospital, soap and water will work just fine, says Richard Gallo, MD, PhD, chief of the Division of Dermatology at the University of California-San Diego.

When you’re not near a sink, hand sanitizing gels can help, but be sure to read the label first. Recent research has shown that those containing triclosan may promote bacteria and virus resistance to antibiotic medications (this goes for antibacterial hand soaps that contain triclosan, too). Instead, choose brands like Purell, that contain at least 60% alcohol, which will kill 99% of bacteria on contact.