Q My 16-year-old daughter hasn’t drunk water for two years. She says she hates the taste, even chilled, so drinks nothing at mealtimes when only water is on the table. In hot weather, she seems ready to risk dehydration rather than drink it. She has only artificially sweetened squashes, flavoured waters and fizzy drinks. I worry about the health risks, but also about making too much of a fuss.

A Yes, you should let it go. As long as your daughter is taking in enough fluid to keep her well – and she seems to be doing that – it doesn’t really matter that the fluid isn’t in the form of plain water. She is 16 and is old enough to make up her own mind  about what she should and shouldn’t drink. So leave it be.

Q I’m 29 and have been diagnosed with patellar tendonitis (inflammation of the patellar tendon that connects the kneecap to the shin bone). Before the injury, I used to enjoy running and playing squash, but my GP says that I should now give them a rest. What do you think?

A You absolutely have to rest from running and playing squash until the tendon has healed, otherwise it won’t and may even rupture. And if that happens, you will need quite difficult surgery with an even longer recovery time. You could keep up your fitness with swimming, which takes gravity out of the equation yet keeps muscles toned. Your tendon will eventually heal, and you can go back to sports again then, but don’t attempt anything until a doctor gives you the all clear.


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