Behind the Headlines

Your guide to the science that makes the news

Reports that frequent drinking prevents diabetes are inaccurate

Friday Jul 28 2017

"Drinking a moderate amount of certain drinks such as wine three to four times a week reduced diabetes risk by about 30%," The Guardian reports. That was the main reported finding of a Danish study looking at the impact of alcohol on diabetes risk…

Questions over advice to finish courses of antibiotics

Thursday Jul 27 2017

"Should you finish a course of antibiotics?" asks BBC Online. The question is prompted by a new review suggesting concerns around antibiotic treatment are driven by fears of under-treatment, when we should instead be concerned about over-use...

Eye screening linked to fall in sight loss in people with diabetes

Thursday Jul 27 2017

"The proportion of diabetics who go blind or suffer sight loss has almost halved since a new national retinopathy screening programme started in 2007," BBC News reports…

Western sperm counts 'halved' in last 40 years

Wednesday Jul 26 2017

"Sperm counts among Western men have halved in last 40 years," The Guardian reports. A major review of research carried out since 1973 found an estimated 50-60% drop in sperm count in developed nations...

'Buying time' and not just things may increase life satisfaction

Tuesday Jul 25 2017

"Using money to free-up time is linked to increased happiness," BBC News reports. Researchers surveyed people from a number of developed countries and found those who reported using money to free up time…

Snoring link to Alzheimer’s disease unproven

Monday Jul 24 2017

"Snoring linked to Alzheimer's," the Mail Online reports. A US study reported an association between sleep-disorder breathing and Alzheimer's disease in later life. But no definitive link between the two has been proven...

Could cows be the clue that leads to an HIV vaccine?

Friday Jul 21 2017

"Cows have shown an 'insane' and 'mind-blowing' ability to tackle HIV which will help develop a vaccine, say US researchers," BBC News reports. The report is based on new research in cows that were immunised against HIV…

Nine lifestyle changes may reduce risk of dementia

Thursday Jul 20 2017

"Nine lifestyle changes can reduce dementia risk," BBC News reports. A major review by The Lancet has identified nine potentially modifiable risk factors linked to dementia…

High-dose vitamin D 'doesn't prevent colds and flu in kids'

Wednesday Jul 19 2017

"Vitamin D will not protect your child from a cold: myth-busting study says 'more isn't always better' to help toddlers stay healthy," says the Mail Online. The story is based on a study that looked at…

Benefits of artificial sweeteners unclear

Wednesday Jul 19 2017

"Artificial sweeteners linked to risk of weight gain," the Daily Mirror reports. Researchers looking at data gathered in previous studies reported a link between artificial sweeteners – ironically often associated with diet drinks – and weight gain...

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