Monday, 25 February 2008

On the one hand....

Last week I read in the news that sleeping in the afternoon is bad for you. On the very same news feed was an item showing that sleeping in the afternoon is good for you.

This was only unusual in so far as both items turned up on the same day. There are plenty of contradictory stories on anything health-related you care to mention.

Lowering cholesterol is good for your heart...but may give you stomach cancer. Going on the pill protects you from some cancer but increases your risk of others. Drinking wine protects against colds, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, dementia….but increases your risk of breast cancer.

What’s a person to do? Hippie Neil in The Young Ones exhorted his friends not to sleep for fear it would give them cancer. The Telegraph identifies a new food fad - orthorexia - whose suffers are obsessed with "bad" foods and additives, sometimes leaving themselves malnourished in their attempts to avoid certain foodstuffs.

All risks are relative, of course. And the headline may not convey the true facts. As Grandma used to say - everything in moderation.

No comments: