Behind the Headlines

Your guide to the science that makes the news

Growing up with a dog 'reduces childhood asthma risk'

Tuesday Nov 3 2015

"Children who grow up with a pet dog in the family home have a lower risk of developing asthma," The Times reports. A large Swedish study found an association between pet ownership and reduced risk of asthma…

Genetic variation 'reduces risk of heart disease in women'

Thursday Oct 22 2015

"Scientists have identified a gene that puts women at higher risk of heart disease, an early study suggests," BBC News incorrectly reports. But the study in question has not found a new gene...

Living near an airport 'may be bad for your health'

Wednesday Oct 21 2015

"People who live within six miles [of an airport] have higher levels of asthma and heart problems," the Daily Mail reports after a US study has suggested exposure to carbon monoxide from planes may impact on…

Does surfing the internet raise your blood pressure?

Thursday Oct 8 2015

"American researchers discovered a link between internet use and high blood pressure [in teens]," The Independent reports. But the study did not actually find heavy internet use was associated with high blood pressure...

High blood pressure: does it leads to diabetes?

Thursday Oct 1 2015

"Study gives strongest link yet between blood pressure and diabetes," says The Guardian. At first glance these might be considered two unconnected conditions, but research over the years has led to diabetes being...

Probiotic friendly bacteria may play role in stopping asthma

Thursday Oct 1 2015

"'Good bacteria' key to stopping asthma," says BBC News. Before you go out and buy a year's supply of probiotic yoghurt drinks, it's worth noting a few points that burst the hype...

Olive oil and wholegrains 'lower heart disease risk'

Tuesday Sep 29 2015

“Butter isn’t better than margarine after all,” declares the Mail Online, after a new study finds that reducing saturated fat does indeed lower the risk of heart disease...

UK women's life expectancy 'second worst' in Western Europe

Wednesday Sep 23 2015

"British women have second worst life expectancy in Europe," The Guardian reports. This is one of the findings of a Europe-wide health report carried out by the World Health Organization…

Smoking linked to raised diabetes risk – including passive smoking

Friday Sep 18 2015

"Passive smoking raises risk of type 2 diabetes," The Guardian reports. A major new analysis of previous studies found a significant association between exposure to tobacco smoke – including secondhand smoke – and type 2 diabetes…

Study finds North-South divide in UK life expectancy

Tuesday Sep 15 2015

"England's richest people 'live eight years longer than the country's poorest'," The Independent reports. A major new study has found a significant difference in life expectancy of the richer South East England compared to the poorer North…

What is Behind the Headlines?

What is Behind the Headlines?

We give you the facts without the fiction. Professor Sir Muir Gray, founder of Behind the Headlines, explains more...

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