This isn't going to be a proper blog post, just a couple of snippets as I have a nice hot bath running and intend to spend the bulk of the remaining evening sat in it.
First up, a case of studying the bleeding obvious:
Consuming energy drinks alters heart function, study shows
No shit Sherlock. Energy drinks contain caffeine which is a stimulant which alters heart function.
In a study presented at the Radiological Society of North America, researchers studied 18 healthy adults who underwent magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans one hour before and one hour after consuming an energy drink. The beverage used in the study contained both taurine (400 mg/100 ml) and caffeine (32 mg/100 ml).
The researchers discovered that after consuming energy drinks, the participants experienced a significant increase in contractions in the heart’s left ventricle, which receives oxygenated blood from the lungs.
Eighteen adults take caffeine and their hearts react in a takey caffeiney like manner? The people who study this bollocks actually refer to themselves as scientists.
Not only does caffeine alter the heart function as a stimulant, it also affects different people in different ways. I had to give up instant coffee because it was giving me chest pains and palpitations. The funny thing is I can still drink tea, and even funnier, filter coffee, as neither affect me in the same way instant does. Mrs Bucko still drinks instant by the bucket load because it doesn't affect her in the same way it does me.
A study of only eighteen people wouldn't even come close to figuring out how energy drinks affect individuals.
So why bother with this rubbish study?
"There are concerns about the products' potential adverse side effects on heart function, especially in adolescents and young adults, but there is little or no regulation of energy drink sales."
Because they want regulation.
Dörner said more research is needed to assess the impact of long term consumption of energy drinks
And they want funding. *Yawn*
Jacob Sullum at Reason.com points out that not only is the study pointless, it's also very badly flawed.
"The amount of caffeine is up to three times higher than in other caffeinated beverages like coffee or cola," said Jonas Dorner,The implication is pretty clear: Energy drinks pose a potentially deadly threat because they contain so much caffeine. Yet the drinks that Dorner and his colleagues gave their 18 subjects contained 32 milligrams of caffeine per 100 milliliters, compared to 76 milligrams per 100 milliliters for Starbucks coffee.
The trouble is, the average drone (and there are many) will read 'Three times more caffeine' and believe it. None of them will question the validity of statements made in 'studies'.
Next up is nothing to see here:
All-night drinking law fails to reduce street violence in Manchester, study reveals
Street violence levels in Manchester remain unchanged despite the introduction of 24 hour licensing laws, according to research published this week.
I suppose one of the main reasons for the relaxation of the licensing laws was to try and curb violence at kicking out time. If levels of violence have remained unchanged then it didn't achieve this aim.
On the other hand, if levels of violence remain unchanged, it hasn't done any harm either. May as well let it be.
And finally, common sense prevails:
Hospital trust to ignore smoking ban guideline
OXFORDSHIRE’S hospital trust is to flout a recommendation by a Government body that smoking should be banned from its sites.
Oxford University Hospitals NHS Trust has said it will continue with its plans to install smoking shelters at all four of its hospital sites
Oohh! They are going to take some serious flak for that one. The righteous anti smoking lobby are going to be out in force, gnashing those teeth and rending those garments.
I do hope they have the backbone to see this one through. If so, maybe other will follow suit.
Good luck to them.