Category Archives: Health

Health benefits of nicotine Matt Eagles smoked his first cigarettes — which he bought quite easily from the local newsagent — aged 12. ‘I was the sort of kid who just liked being naughty, but it soon became a regular habit,’ says the 51-year-old from Cuddington, Cheshire. It’s a story familiar to millions, but while smoking is universally […]

Silent suffering: another women’s problem At Liverpool Street Station in London at rush hour, Helen McLaughlin was overcome by waves of agonising pain — then she fainted. ‘I was waiting for my boyfriend and lost consciousness as the pain in my abdomen was so intense,’ she recalls. ‘I couldn’t speak or breathe. I kept coming round then fainting again, […]

Imaginary impotence The phrase ‘drug-fuelled sex’ has a very different meaning for 23-year-old student Greg Banks compared with the popular perception of it. For rather than indicating outrageous behaviour, Greg needs to take Viagra to ‘guarantee’ performance. He started using the drug when he was 18, because he ‘had problems with sex’ if he was drinking […]

Food additives linked to disease Our lives are being cut short by the toxic effects of our ‘ultra-processed’ diet, according to new research buried by the attention on Covid-19. Ultra-processed food products — which studies suggest now make up to 60 per cent of the average diet in the UK — are invariably high in fat or sugar (or […]

Magnesium a magic supplement Preparing for her 14th marathon later this year, 77-year-old Sylvia Jennings offers some words of reassurance: ‘As long as you can get your shoes on and get out of the door, I think you’re OK.’ She first took up running age 59, and believes her remarkable athletic performance in older age is linked to […]

Britain’s health divide: From cancer and Covid to dementia and childbirth, black and ethnic minority patients are shamefully more at risk. And worst of all? We STILL don’t know why Moise Roche says that if ever he thought he was losing his memory and had dementia, there’s ‘no way’ he’d see a doctor about it. A researcher in mental health based at University College London, he has published a number of papers in prestigious medical journals focusing on dementia in Black, African and Caribbean […]

Is it time to BAN electric shock therapy? Like a ‘zombie’ is how Gillian describes her state following electroconvulsive therapy for severe depression. She was given the treatment after the birth of her third child triggered terrible flashbacks of childhood abuse and, in turn, major mental illness. The 25 sessions of electroconvulsive therapy, or ECT, she underwent were ‘a worse invasion of […]

Will victims of mesh scandal be betrayed all over again? Kath Sansom had hoped now would be the time she could finally ‘step away from all of this and wind it down’ — by ‘all of this’, the 52-year-old means the long fight for victims of faulty vaginal mesh. Since 2011, Good Health has been telling the stories of women whose lives had been […]

We must ban the mesh for good Professor Sue Black OBE is understandably bitter. Last year, she was a candidate in the London Mayoral election, standing for the Women’s Equality Party, when that bid had to be cut short for health reasons, following complications from a ‘simple’ operation she’d had more than 15 years earlier. ‘I’ve been completely debilitated by a […]

The 3p wonder pill: Metformin is already used for diabetes, but now doctors hope it could work for heart disease, cancer and even Covid. Suzy Birkett thinks the drugs industry ‘has taken its eye off the ball’ by looking in the wrong direction for treatments for her illness. ‘I might have been able to walk between the raindrops of this disease by doing something different from what they suggest,’ she says. ‘This disease’ is advanced breast cancer, which […]