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Governments spent billions of dollars on useless flu drugs

The US government spent $1.3bn stockpiling antiviral drugs to protect key workers against the H1N1 (swine flu) virus, while the UK spent £424m—but there is no evidence the drugs work, an independent review has concluded. more »

Check your mouth to discover your chances of heart disease

What are your chances of developing heart disease? Just look in your mouth to find out. People with bad teeth or bleeding gums are far more likely to suffer from cardiovascular disease—and dental problems may not just be a warning sign, they could even be the cause. more »

Record $9bn fine for two drug companies over diabetes drug

Two drug companies have been handed a record fine of $9 bn after they concealed evidence of a possible link between their diabetes drug, Actos, and bladder cancer. more »

Forgot where you left your keys? Drink some green tea, and you’ll remember

Green tea helps us think better and can improve our working memory. The drink could even be used to help treat psychiatric disorders such as dementia, say researchers. more »

Pulses reduce cholesterol levels without statins

Everyone seems to be worried about their level of cholesterol—and doctors are keen to prescribe statin drugs in order to reduce it—but just eating one serving of pulses, such as beans, lentils or chickpeas, every day is all you need to do to keep it in check, researchers say this week. more »

Missing protein is key to gluten intolerance, scientists discover

Scientists have this week moved a step closer to understanding gluten intolerance and celiac disease. Sufferers are low in elafin, a protein, which protects the gut wall and reduces the body’s reaction to wheat—and supplements containing the protein seem to reverse the problem. more »

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The Medical Detective - Dr Gaier's casebook Getting whipped into shape The aftershocks of whiplash can be psychological as well as physical, but osteopathy can handle both, says Dr Harald Gaier. While taking my 16-year-old daughter to school, I stopped behind a row of ca...