Suspect Health Information Sneaking Into Print

A spate of suspect health information seems to be bubbling into print lately.

A government researcher claims in USA Today that nearly one out of three American adults has or is at risk for diabetes, even though actual prevalence is only 6.5 percent, with the rest either undiagnosed or consisting of healthy people with high blood sugar.

The New York Times recently reported that the American Society for Hypertension is taking drug company money to come up with new guidelines widening the definition of high blood pressure.

The Washington Post joins the parade of publications exposing “disease mongering” by drug companies, this time focusing on “restless leg syndrome.”

A Times essayist argues in support of the snack food industry that schools are going so far in a crusade against childhood obesity they may be making kids afraid to eat normally.

And the Post unmasks the highly publicized American Medical Association warning last March that college girls like to drink and have sex during spring break as having been based on a “poll” as unscientific as Pat Robertson’s meteorology.

The issue requiring constant vigilance is whether today’s vast health claims are mostly on the level or merely half-vast.

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