News & Analysis

New study shows children are less fat – but less fit. The ‘obesity crisis’ may be a fitness crisis

A long-term study by the University of Essex has found that, although the average BMI (body mass index) of children…

Sorry, but there’s no real evidence that chocolate makes you healthier

Yesterday’s newspapers were full of grand claims about the health benefits of eating chocolate. The Daily Mail called it a…

The government has found new momentum for NHS reform

The PM’s first policy speech in this Parliament was devoted to the NHS and marked a big shift in tone…

We really are screwed if we believe that social media can curse us

It’s easy to scoff at the voodoo mindset of ‘funny foreigners’, but are we really in a position to laugh?

Vapers deserve to be angry – they are under attack

There is a perception – on Twitter at least – that vapers are angry and abusive. Ben Goldacre recently described…

Why is the West so obsessed with the developing world’s knickers?

Forget the selfie or the belfie; the latest craze to hit the internet is the ‘tampfie’. Twitter users are raiding their…

Roll of shame: MPs who back homeopathy fan David Tredinnick for chair of Commons Health Committee

The list of supporters for a man who believes that a full moon can cause internal bleeding.

Big Tobacco and the smugglers: do you believe this conspiracy theory?

In an information sheet on its website, the Tobacco Manufacturers’ Association draws a link between the illegal cigarette trade and prostitution,…

The BBC swallows more fanatical nonsense from Action on Sugar

Action on Sugar, the bastard offspring of Consensus Action on Salt, has noticed that dried fruit contains sugar. As with…

Cameron’s seven-day GP service is a mad promise straight out of ‘Yes, Prime Minister’

I love the series Yes, Minister and Yes, Prime Minister for many reasons, among them the timeless, elegant dialogue that can…

Dying Without Dignity: a report on end-of-life care that shames the NHS

The name says it all. ‘Dying Without Dignity’ is the parliamentary health ombudsman’s report into over 300 complaints of the neglect of…

Jonny Wilkinson

Worried about your weight? Check your waistline, not the bathroom scales

If you’ve glanced at a newspaper in the last few months you’ll have noticed that obesity is public health enemy number…

What should Jeremy Hunt do next to the NHS?

The Tories barely talked about the NHS during the election campaign. It was an area of Labour strength, and one…

Horrible diseases are being ‘edited out’ of the human body

Some exciting news about the future of medicine was announced today. Unfortunately, you really need a degree in biochemistry –…

Hormone ‘halves risk of premature birth,’ says the Mail. But its report is wildly inaccurate

As a gynaecologist, I was appalled to read this story about a supposedly ‘groundbreaking’ treatment to stop premature births in the…

Why GPs are the London cabbies of the NHS

GPs are the very personification of the description ‘jack of all trades, master of none’. Following so-called ‘specialist’ training, they emerge…

Boston bomber sentenced to death. But can they find the right drugs to kill him?

The Boston bomber, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, was today sentenced to death by lethal injection. The jury reached the decision in the city…

Prince Charles’s letters reveal the extent of his lobbying for dangerous ‘alternative medicine’

The age of enlightenment was a beautiful thing. People cast aside dogma and authority. They started to think for themselves.…