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Everything is hazardous to your health

By John Breneman

It's a dangerous world we live in. Every day doctors release startling new reports about stuff that can kill us. Fortunately, we are also bombarded with news about medical breakthroughs guaranteed to help us avoid the discomfort and inconvenience of premature death.

For example, my crack team of medical specialists has just learned that people who consume 50 milligrams of cornpone each day are 32 percent less likely to suffer from rickets, gangrene or curvature of the liver. I take an aspirin a day to prevent heart murmurs and a glass of red wine to ward off gallstones, cerebral hemorrhage and frostbite.

But the threat of disease is omnipresent. Mumps. Lupus. Vertigo. The painful itch and swelling of bipolar encephalitis. Why, the poor Surgeon General is working overtime to warn us about the astonishing array of substances that may be "hazardous to your health."

Just today, he issued a report in the prestigious Imaginary Journal of Medicine expanding the list of things that may cause cancer to include:

-- Asbestos Wafers
-- raw chinchilla meat
-- Bubonic Margarine
-- malignant cancer cells
-- genetically engineered fiddleheads
-- Marlboro brand Cancer Sticks
-- and most tap water

Occupational hazards are literally all around us, even in climate-controlled office cubicles.
We know that people who squint and peck at computers each day run a much higher risk of burnt-out eyes and crippled wrists. But doctors say there is an ultraviolet light at the end of the carpal tunnel. Something about trickle-down ergonomics.

Here my crack team of medical experts offers a handy list of tips to protect you from the trauma of gingivitis, clubfoot and scarlet fever, while adding 4.6 years to your life expectancy:

-- Forensic political scientists warn that prolonged exposure to George W. Bush may cause intense cerebral discomfort.

-- Most HMOs recommend periodic checkups to ensure early detection of jaundice, tennis elbow and leprosy.

-- A new survey reveals that excessive cell phone use may cause exaggerated levels of self-importance among people who strut down the street jabbering into their handheld unit about whether to pick up 2% milk or regular.

-- Contrary to earlier published reports, Vitamin B-9 is benign.

-- Consult your physician before embarking on a fitness plan that includes any of the following: sumo wrestling, cock fighting, pole vaulting or Turbo Yoga.

-- The Surgeon General has determined that oxygen may be hazardous to your health.

-- Eating a bucket of Colonel Sanders will not cause chicken pox. (However, side effects may include esophageal clogging, measles and varicose veins.)

-- The American Medical Association recommends limiting the amount of e. coli in your balanced diet.

-- Avoiding rough neighborhoods greatly reduces your risk of Slashed Jugular Vein Syndrome.

-- Doctors recommend having your "innards" checked for cardiovascular fleas and waxy yellow buildup at least seven times a month.

-- The Centers for Disease Control is reporting today that the surgeon general has "declared war" on anthrax, whooping pneumonia and @#$%&* Tourette Syndrome.

-- If your condition persists, try a new conditioner.

-- Agricultural researchers at Old McDonald's Pharmacy contend that Grandma's homemade apple crisp will cure "anything that ails you."

-- In a related discovery, physicians at the Mayo Clinic have learned that people who consume one or more apples per day are significantly more likely to keep the doctor away.

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