Behind the Headlines

Your guide to the science that makes the news

Could a very low calorie diet 'cure' type 2 diabetes?

Tuesday Mar 22 2016

"Dieting for just eight weeks can reverse your diabetes," the Daily Mail reports. A small study of 30 people with type 2 diabetes found eight weeks on a very low calorie diet of around 600 to 700 calories a day, followed…

Can chocolate make you smarter?

Wednesday Mar 9 2016

"Chocolate makes you smarter, proves 40-year study," claims the Daily Express. The news is based on research which found that people who ate chocolate at least once a week performed better in brain tests...

'Carbs linked to lung cancer,' study finds

Tuesday Mar 8 2016

"White bread, bagels and rice 'increase the risk of lung cancer by 49%','' the Mail Online reports after a US study found a link between lung cancer and eating a diet with a high glycaemic index (GI), a measure of carbohydrate content…

Early exposure to peanuts 'cuts allergy risk in children'

Monday Mar 7 2016

"The effects of eating peanut products as a baby to avoid the risk of allergy have been backed up by new research," BBC News reports. A new study suggests eating peanut snacks in the first year of life reduces the risk of a nut allergy in children…

Daily diet of almonds is no magic solution for weight loss

Wednesday Feb 24 2016

"Desperate to lose weight?" asks the Mail Online. "Eat almonds! Handful a day 'wards off hunger and replaces empty calories from junk food'," it says, entirely without any justification, as the study it reports on didn't look at weight…

Organic milk 'is healthier' than conventional milk, study says

Wednesday Feb 17 2016

"Organic meat and milk could offer health benefits, study suggests," The Guardian reports. The news is the conclusion of two reviews looking at the available evidence on the potential benefits of organic meat and milk…

Scientists look at what puts the 'junk' into junk foods

Thursday Feb 11 2016

"Scientists say they have cracked what makes processed foods… harmful," the Daily Mail reports. A small study suggests processed foods are high in "PAMPs" – pathogen-associated molecular patterns – which are molecules that trigger inflammation…

Young women with high-fibre diet may have lower breast cancer risk

Tuesday Feb 2 2016

"Teenage girls who get their five-a-day cut breast cancer risk by up to 25 per cent," the Daily Mirror reports. A US study suggests that a high-fibre diet based on eating plenty of fruit and vegetables reduces the risk of breast cancer in later life…

High-flavonoid foods, like berries and apples, 'prevent weight gain'

Friday Jan 29 2016

"Get fruity to get fit: Eat more berries to beat a big belly," The Sun reports. The advice is based on the findings of a major new study looking at the effects of foods rich in the compound flavonoid, such as berries and apples, on body weight…

Researchers investigate why obesity can trigger bowel cancer

Tuesday Jan 19 2016

"Excess calories 'turn off a hormone in the intestine that blocks colon cancer'," the Mail Online reports. Obesity is a known risk factor for bowel cancer (colorectal cancer). There is evidence that a diet rich in processed meats…

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What is Behind the Headlines?

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