SIRC – Media Watch 30-04-99
Sea, Sand and Sex
Sex is Good for You
Sex enthusiasts this week can be reassured that their preferred source of recreation, on a moderate basis only, can actually be beneficial to their health. Psychologists at Wilkes University, Pennsylvania suggest that two 'sessions' a week can be successful in warding off colds and flu, but be warned the sexual athlete: over indulgence reduces resistance to infection. All well and good you may think, but since when did people have sex to prevent the common cold anyway?
A study published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health [May 1999; 53: 317] has found coastal areas in Britain exhibit larger concentrations of leukaemia than the national average. This trend has already been documented, but what is different about the Cambridge University research is the reasons that it offers for this geographical disparity. Historically suggestions have centred on high levels of heavy metals and radioactive materials present in estuary and coastal silt, but they propose: "the estuaries involved, however, are noteworthy for the extent of maritime activities. Both recreational and occupational activity would involve potential exposure to resins, solvents, paints and petroleum products, which have been shown to be risk factors for acute leukaemia." So their message would appear to be this: messing about on the water is no longer a sensible pastime for the health conscious.