Thursday 26 April 2018

'I told you that I was sick ... '

Ancient myths carried messages, some useful, some harmful. Modern myths are often wildly wrong and sometimes plain daft.

Many of them reflect the almost universal obsession with cancer. A survey carried out by University College Cork finds that more than half the respondents think the condition is inherited in up to 20pc of cases. The true figure is between 3pc and 5pc.

On some questions, people are remarkably well informed. More than 80pc know that the "correct" waist circumference is 32 inches for women; almost as many identify 37 inches as right for men. But who dreamed up the concept of a correct figure in the first place? And does a perfect shape guarantee good health?

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