Republican presidential hopeful Michele Bachmann and Jersey Shore star Snooki have something in common.
Both women were among the worst offenders when it came to making misleading scienctific statements, according to Sense About Science (SAS), a UK-based organization that works to help the public understand science and straighten out any misconceptions. SAS named celebrities who made some of the worst scientific claims of 2011.
Bachmann caused a snafu when she quoted a woman who allegedly told her that the HPV vaccine caused mental retardation in her daughter.
There is no evidence that the HPV vaccine causes mental retardation or that there are dangerous consequences, gynaelogical oncologist Sean Kehoe said in a SAS report. The evidence that cervical cancer causes deaths, however, is unquestionable.
Snooki's claim that ocean water is salty due to whale sperm prompted some clarification from oceanographer Simon Boxall.
Snooki - it would take a lot of whale sperm to make the sea that salty! Boxall said in the SAS report. The salt in the sea comes from many millions of years of water flowing over rocks and minerals. It slowly dissolves them leading to the 'salty' nature of the seas - it's not just salt but every material on the planet including gold.
Another offender is actress Gwyneth Paltrow, who wrote about a certain detox system on her Web site: I have gooped about Dr Alejandro Junger's Clean program before because it gave me such spectacular results; it is really just the thing if you are in need of a good detox - wanting some mental clarity and to drop a few pounds.
General practitioner Christian Jessen pointed out that humans already have a detox system.
Your body has its own fantastic detox system already in place in the shape of your liver and kidneys, Jessen said. Much better to drink plenty of water, eat a balanced diet, get plenty of sleep, and let your body do what it does best!