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What's left that won't consign us to an early grave?

Published 03/11/2015

IN the midst of yet another fear-inducing study from the World Health Organisation, I've arrived at the conclusion that absolutely everything I do on a daily basis is ultimately contributing to my untimely, painful death.

The leading world health body emerged with the shocking results from new research which is branding the consumption of red meat - primarily the processed kind - as a leading factor in the cause of bowel cancer.

It seems a day cannot pass us by without being bombarded with similar revelations, which leave most us feeling afraid and guilty about some of our most simple consumptions.

Last night, as I cut carefully into a succulent 10oz steak, I had no idea that it would be myself who would be waking up overcome by an immense fear for the future of my health and not my friends, whose invitation to a hard night out on the town I had gratefully declined.

The labelling of the likes of smoking, alcohol, drugs, asbestos and the exposure to toxic fumes as detrimental to human health in the past few decades has been somewhat easier to take than the results of more recent studies.

In no shape or form would I consider criticising the work these experts are doing for world health, but one can't help but wonder if it's a case of running out of causes to investigate and moving from one item to the next, until before we know it everything around us is a legitimate cause of cancer.

Sitting here now - craving a cigarette, replying to messages about an upcoming night on the beer, resting my laptop on my legs while my mother cooks some lasagne - I glance around the room pondering what else could be unknowingly contributing to what now unfortunately seems to be the inevitable.

ANDREW McGINLEY

By email

Belfast Telegraph

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