Behind the Headlines

Your guide to the science that makes the news

Middle age 'starts at 60' claims media

Thursday Apr 16 2015

'40 is the new 60' – middle age begins later in life now

"Middle age begins at 60, say researchers," The Times reports. A new population modelling study estimates that due to increased lifespan, what was once regarded as elderly should be seen as middle-aged, and this trend will continue into the future…

No proof that bad relationships raise blood pressure

Tuesday Apr 14 2015

A stressful marriage could be bad for your blood pressure

"If you have ever blamed your partner for making your blood boil, a new study could be the evidence you need to prove it's true," Mail Online reports. But the association between stress and blood pressure is much less clear-cut than the Mail suggests…

Can a facelift make you more likeable?

Monday Apr 13 2015

Does having a facelift make women more likeable?

"Having plastic surgery can make you more likeable," the Mail Online reports. It says cosmetic facial surgery not only makes you look younger, but could also improve what people think of your character. As the Mail Online reports...

'Marathon men' make better sexual partners, media claims

Thursday Apr 9 2015

'Marathon men' make better sexual partners, media claim

"Marathon runners are the best in bed," is the spurious claim in Metro. The headline is based on a study that only looked at long-distance runners’ finger ratios – said to be a marker for high testosterone levels – not reported partner satisfaction…

Vigorous exercise 'may help prevent early death'

Tuesday Apr 7 2015

Getting sweaty could help prevent early death

"Short bursts of vigorous exercise helps prevent early death," The Independent reports after an Australian study found vigorous exercise, such as jogging, reduced the risk of premature death…

Sedentary lifestyle, not watching TV, may up diabetes risk

Thursday Apr 2 2015

Sedentary lifestyle, not watching TV, may up diabetes risk

"Experts claim being a couch potato can increase the risk of developing diabetes," the Daily Express reports. A study estimated that each hour of time spent watching TV increased the risk of type 2 diabetes by 2.1% in high-risk people…

Sperm quality pesticides claim 'should be treated with caution'

Tuesday Mar 31 2015

Pesticides on fruit and veg may damage sperm quality

"Pesticides on fruit and vegetables may be damaging sperm counts and men should consider going organic if they want to have children," The Daily Telegraph reports…

Fit middle-aged men have lower cancer risk

Friday Mar 27 2015

Fit middle-aged men have lower cancer risk

"Very fit men in their late 40s are less likely to get lung cancer and colorectal cancer than unfit men," says BBC News as it reports on a new US study…

Study finds link between air pollution and stroke risk

Wednesday Mar 25 2015

Air pollution linked to strokes

"Air pollution is linked to an increased risk of stroke," BBC News reports, prompted by a large global study in The BMJ. Researchers found an association even with brief upsurges in air pollution levels…

Are power naps a 'five-fold' memory booster?

Tuesday Mar 24 2015

Are power naps a 'five-fold' memory booster?

"A 45-minute power nap can boost your memory five-fold, study finds," The Independent reports. However, this impressive claim is let down by the small size of the study…

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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