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Spring water, aspirin and… octopus heads?

By Laura Passi

Our roundup of health news headlines on Friday 22 October.

A first for a Friday digest; legal/illegal highs are not in the newspapers.

‘Fall in cervical cancer tests signals end of "Goody effect"' reports the Daily Telegraph. As figures from the NHS Information Centre show ‘3.3 million women aged 25 to 64 in England were tested under the screening programme in 2009-10, a drop from the previous year's peak on 3.6 million.'

The Daily Mail has the headline ‘Why modern life DOES cause cancer: The fascinating research which backs what we all feared.' I think we can leave that story there; we've got the weekend to try and enjoy.

We are still on the subject of cancer but, The Guardian has some positive news for us. ‘Small doses of aspirin 'can significantly reduce' bowel cancer risk'. The newspaper covers information published in The Lancet. They say: ‘The painkiller can reduce by a quarter the chances of being diagnosed with the disease, which is the UK's third most common cancer.'

‘Queens favourite spring water runs dry after 400 years' the Times reports the news that ‘Coca Cola has axed the bottled water favoured by Her Majesty.'

For those who are heading to South Korea, be aware there are some disputes about the safe consumption of octopus heads. The Independent reports that Seoul City authorities have warned that the apparently aphrodisiac delicacy contains high level cadmium, which is a carcinogen. They have recommended that their citizens shouldn't eat more than two octopus heads a day. Wow.

Spotted a story we've missed? Let us know, and we'll update the digest throughout the day...

Daily digest