SIRC Media Watch Archive
Articles of Note – April 2000

She may be slim… but is she healthy? Modelling has been under fire over the negative effects it has on women's self-image and diets are a bad way to lose weight as they can lead to a yo-yo effect. Express.

The sky is not falling. The evidence is superabundant that modern humans are healthier and more long-lived than were humans at any other historical time. Yet it seems that the safer humans in general become, the less safe citizens of developed countries feel. ACSH

A little of what you fancy does you good. The sheer enjoyment derived from simple pleasures could more than outweigh any damage they do to our health if we felt less guilty about them, scientists claimed yesterday. Times.

Judging gene foods. Are genetically modified foods safe to eat? A grand forum of internationally renowned scientists and other experts might soon be helping the world decide. The forum would regularly provide governments with an independent, state-of-the-art consensus on what the latest science tells us, helping to resolve international divisions on GM food safety. New Scientist.

Food therapists 'give poor advice' People turning to nutritional therapists with their health concerns are given poor quality advice and encouraged to spend money on unproven treatments, the Consumers' Association has said. BBC.

Cancer expert says GM crops can be healthier. One of Britain's leading geneticists has attacked Lord Melchett, executive director of Greenpeace, for demanding absolute proof that genetically modified (GM) crops are safe. Independent.

Poor marks. An organic label may be less comforting than you think. There are six different authorities handing out certificates to food manufacturers in the UK – and the standards they set vary wildly. Guardian.

Sophisticated diets 'no advantage' Sophisticated diets based on eating food from the major nutrient groups separately are no more effective than simple approaches, say researchers. BBC.

The fears that science may never put to flight. Dozens of scientific reports have been published on the possible health effects of mobile phones but the case remains unproven. It may never be possible to settle the issue to everybody's satisfaction. Science may demonstrate no evidence of risk but it cannot demonstrate evidence of no risk – which is what users demand. Times.

Health scares force UK to go tough on food safety. Britain's new Food Standards Agency has set to work hoping to convince sceptical shoppers that crops and animals are safe to eat after years of health scares. Reuters.

Too clean for our own good? We are so concerned with blitzing bacteria that our children's immunity is affected. Times.

The backlash against NGOs. In a global world without global government, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) have stepped in to fill the gap. But there is now a backlash against their unaccountable power. Have they become too big for their boots? Prospect.

Filling the bowl. For billions worldwide, a modified grain could end the lean times. Rice, which provides more than half the daily food for one third of people across the globe, is a key target for genetic engineers seeking to develop new crops to feed the world's burgeoning population. Just such a strain of genetically modified rice, which boosts yields by a massive 35 per cent, was unveiled this week in the Philippines at an international conference on rice biotechnology. New Scientist.