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Tory NHS manifesto row, GPs urged to prescribe meditation and why running barefoot is best

By Nigel Praities

Our roundup of news headlines on Tuesday 5 January 2010.

All the newspapers cover the ‘dodgy dossier ding dong' following a report released by the Chancellor in which he claims to show there is a £34 billion black hole in Conservative spending plans, including health pledges such as giving patients 45,000 new single rooms.

Alistair Darling's report was timed to scupper the Tories NHS plans released yesterday, which the Times claims omits several key promises. The newspaper says the draft Tory manifesto downgraded their promise to raise the proportion of single rooms from 28% to 55% and omits promises of 4,200 more health visitors and maternity nurses for every new mother made last spring.

Many of the papers focus on the darker side of life today, after the Mental Health Foundation said GPs should prescribe ‘mindfulness' therapy or meditation more to help people with depression.

Writing in the Guardian, Dr Crippen expresses his anger at patients who buy St John's Wort over the internet when they simply have a case of the New Year blues.

The Mirror covers US research that shows running in trainers strains the joints more than running barefoot.

It may not be a shock to most GPs, but American scientists are saying in the Independent that obesity has overtaken smoking as a bigger threat to people's health.

In lighter news, pomegranates are being proclaimed as the next 'superfood' after a study showed they may help prevent breast cancer, according to The Telegraph today. It looks at a study published in Cancer Prevention Research that shows a chemical in the fruit may prevent malignacy, but admits more studies are needed before any relationship is confirmed.

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

Daily Digest