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A national survey recently revealed that 52 percent of women routinely stretch the truth when they talk to their doctors — exaggerating how much exercise they get, lowballing how much they smoke or drink, even hiding sexual behavior. In fact, more than a quarter of the women in the survey didn’t believe their lies were a big deal. Yet lying to the one person who really needs to know the truth — and is bound by doctor/patient privilege and federal law to keep that info private — can be a very big deal.

When you tell even a fib, your doctor can’t diagnose you correctly, which wastes your time and money and may keep her from giving treatment that could save your life. So the next time you’re tempted to make like Pinocchio with one of the following falsehoods, here’s the truth about why you should tell nothing but.

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