EXERCISES to prevent a double chin can pull the jaw out of position and strain the chewing muscles, specialists from St Bartholomew's Hospital, London, have warned. In a report in the British Medical Journal, they describe the case of a young woman who suffered pain and clicking in her jaw after doing exercises suggested in a women's magazine. They involved pushing the jaw forward and sticking the tongue out for five minutes, twice a day.

The doctors point out that double chins are caused either by excess fat or by failure to project the lower jaw, neither of which would have been prevented by the exercises. The patient's symptoms disappeared within four weeks of stopping the exercises.