Health scare is a campaign to scare the public into avoiding a food or chemical on the grounds that it might cause them to contract an illness or have some other negative effect on their health. Many such scares have been shown to be groundless (see MMR vaccine controversy), but in some cases it may involve very real threats to public health and safety.
In 2009 an ABC News article listed "The Top 10 Health Scares Of The Decade": "Some of these threats turned out to be almost nonexistent. Others were arguably overblown. Some caused widespread harm." They listed the following scares:
- Swine flu (H1N1)
- Bisphenol A (BPA)
- Lead paint on toys from China
- Trans fats
- Bird flu (H5N1)
- Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS)
- Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA)
- Hormone replacement therapy (HRT)
- Cell phones.
- Health crisis
- Aspartame controversy
- Dental amalgam controversy
- Thiomersal controversy
- Water fluoridation controversy