MEDIA: GOOD HEALTH: AN EXPERT’S VIEW - The relaunched magazine is disappointing and bitty as Claire Beale discovers

You have to understand that I’m not hung up on my body image. I mean, I’m pretty good at making sure my hemline’s just long enough to hide my flab. You’d never know, really. Until bikini weather, that is.

You have to understand that I’m not hung up on my body image. I

mean, I’m pretty good at making sure my hemline’s just long enough to

hide my flab. You’d never know, really. Until bikini weather, that

is.



And with spring in the air (sort of), thoughts turn to sun, sand and

cellulite. Personally, I don’t mind a bit of orange-peel flesh, but

these days looking after your body is not a pursuit of vanity but of

health.



In the late 90s we’ve been encouraged to see the quest for the body

beautiful not as a road to firm buttocks but simply a drive for a more

healthy lifestyle.



So there’s a market for a magazine like Good Health, recently bought by

Cabal Communications and relaunched this month. The cover straplines got

me interested straight away: five good reasons to spoil yourself; drink

wine, eat cake, go shopping and have sex. All my favourite things,

though not necessarily in that order.



But inside, the magazine was a big disappointment. The editorial was

bitty, insubstantial and uninformative. Articles on the Alexander

Technique, giving your man an MOT and depression were too superficial to

be of any real use. I couldn’t find anything original.



Worse, though, were the ads, which really lowered the tone of the

magazine; virtually the first I spotted was a tacky full-page ad for a

slimming tablet.



I really wanted to like Good Health because, like many of my friends and

colleagues, I’ve got a voracious appetite for the subject and would

happily buy armfulls of mags on the topic; reading about it makes me

feel as though I’m doing something healthy.



I hope the problem with the magazine lies in the fact that it is in a

transitional phase between publishers. If not, then I diagnose a

terminal illness for Good Health.



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