SIRC Media Watch Archive
Panics and Scares – August 2004

Turn off TV and lose weight Singing in the bath, trying to make someone laugh and turning off the telly could help you lose weight. There's no calorie counting and it could even help you quit smoking. Sun

Are school uniforms making kids ill? Parents are today warned that their children's school uniforms could be making them ill. Children are being exposed to toxic and cancer-causing chemicals used to make some types of school uniforms. As tens of thousands of Welsh children return to school this week after the long summer break, WWF Cymru urged parents to check their children's clothing labels for man-made chemicals, which are known to contaminate people and wildlife. Western Mail

The Fat Virus: Could Obesity Be Contagious? A "fat virus" may account for some 30% of the world's obesity problem, according to new research. But don't freak out just yet: Not all scientists are buying this theory. Web MD.

Watching TV 'harms back muscles'.Slumping in front of the television or a computer for hours at a time may damage important back muscles, according to scientists. Australian researchers studied a group of 19 young men who spent eight weeks in bed. They found that the lack of movement weakened the muscles that support and protect the spine … BBC.

Short tempered? Check your ears. Next time you find yourself in a row with a stranger, check to see if they have symmetrical ears. Researchers in the US found that the less symmetrical a person's body is, the more likely that person is to become aggressive. Mail.

Sex change can cause headache. New research involving male-to-female transsexuals lends further credence to the theory that sex hormones are involved in migraine generation, physicians report in the medical journal Neurology. Reuters.

MoD doctor calls for ban on soldiers' tea and football. Army recruits should be banned from drinking tea and playing football or rugby, according to a medical expert hired by the Ministry of Defence. Telegraph.

Secrets to a longer life: buy a cat, avoid main roads, get married (and stay married). If you want to live longer, get a cat. Calm down, think positively, stop eating rubbish, lose weight, go to college, make some more friends and find a husband or wife who will make you happy. Do all these things, scientists declare in their latest research, and you could live up to 30 years longer than someone who doesn't. Oh, and it helps (although it's probably a bit late to be told) if you can be born in Andorra. Independent.

Power of lunch to save the planet. … the typical lunch of sandwiches and a can of fizzy drink is implicated in environmental destruction on a global scale, according to the environmental group WWF … It says that choosing a sandwich with mayonnaise dressing could have dire consequences for the toucan and the jaguar in South America, the type of bread which you eat could impact on the orang-utan's survival chances in south-east Asia and some salad fillings are threatening the Iberian lynx. Scotsman.