Sesame oil? Granite baths? Sea lettuce? COVID-19 rumors spread like a virus in Japan
Japan Times -- Mar 09
Can applying sesame oil stop the new coronavirus from entering the body? Is it true that a hot water and granite rock bath will help kill the virus? Does taking vitamin D make people less susceptible to the pathogen?

In a nation gripped by fear amid the COVID-19 outbreak, rumors swirling online that appear to have little or no scientific justification have, at times, persuaded people to flock to e-commerce websites in search of items touted — often falsely — as effective against the new coronavirus.

Some of these claims are simple misconceptions, but others are more sinister and deliberate, finding their way into inboxes as spam email containing malware.

The health ministry and cybersecurity firm Trend Micro are already urging caution against a few examples of what they say is a campaign of disinformation, including a text message claiming to give away free face masks, and encouraging recipients to click a link leading to an illicit site.

Be it misinformation or disinformation, what are some of the most prominent COVID-19 myths that have caught the attention of the Japanese public so far? Are they all absolute nonsense or is there a kernel of truth somewhere? And what health tips do experts have to offer in lieu of those misguided bits of knowledge to help us better fight the virus?

News source: Japan Times
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