Behind the Headlines

Your guide to the science that makes the news

Study links shift work to increased risk of diabetes

Friday Jul 25 2014

Shift work linked to diabetes

“Type 2 diabetes is more common in people who work shifts, a large international study suggests,” BBC News reports. The BBC reports on a review that searched the literature and found 12 studies including more than 225,000 people…

TV and gaming after work 'leads to feelings of guilt'

Friday Jul 25 2014

TV and gaming after work 'leads to feelings of guilt'

'Watching TV after work makes you feel 'guilty’' The Independent reports. The results of an online survey suggest watching TV and playing video games after work to relax could be self-defeating, as the activities trigger feelings of guilt and shame…

Owning a dog may make older adults fitter

Wednesday Jul 16 2014

Owning a dog may make older adults fitter

“Want to appear 10 years younger? Just buy a dog,” is the dubious claim on the Mail Online. A study has found a link between dog ownership and increased physical activity in older adults, but how this is linked to looking younger is unclear...

Study explores effect of plain cigarette packs

Tuesday Jul 15 2014

Study explores effect of anti-smoking images

"Long-term smokers find the taste of plain-packaged cigarettes worse than that of branded cigarettes," The Guardian reports. The news comes from Australian research into the impact of plain packaging and health risk warnings on packets of cigarettes…

'Exercise may help prevent Alzheimer's disease'

Monday Jul 14 2014

Alzheimer's 'preventable' through exercise

"Cut Alzheimer's risk by walking," the Daily Mail recommends. This advice is prompted by a statistical modelling study looking at population attributable risks (PARS) – factors known to influence the prevalence of a disease, such as Alzheimer's…

Cycling linked to prostate cancer, but not infertility

Wednesday Jul 9 2014

Cycling linked to prostate cancer, but not infertility

"Men who cycle more than nine hours a week are … more likely to develop prostate cancer," the Mail Online inaccurately reports. The story comes from the publication of an online survey into cycling in the UK and its effects on health outcomes…

Two-question test for alcohol misuse 'effective'

Monday Jul 7 2014

Two question screening for alcohol misuse 'effective'

“Do you regularly have more than six drinks in one sitting? Or do you regret a drunken escapade that took place in the past year? Answering yes to both questions may be a sign that you have a drink problem," the Mail Online reports.

Emotions manipulated in Facebook study

Tuesday Jul 1 2014

Facebook manipulated people's emotions in study

"Facebook made users depressed in secret research," the Mail Online reports. The news comes from a controversial experiment where researchers used the social networking site Facebook to explore the effects of "emotional contagion"…

Moderate TV viewing linked to premature death

Friday Jun 27 2014

Moderate TV viewing linked to premature death

"Watching TV for three hours a day can be deadly – doubling your risk of dying early," the Mail Online reports. A study has found a link between premature death and TV viewing, but not between other types of sedentary behaviour such as computer use…

Vitamin D deficiency linked to high blood pressure

Thursday Jun 26 2014

Vitamin D deficiency linked to high blood pressure

"Vitamin D supplements could help high blood pressure," The Independent reports. The paper reports on new research into genetic variations associated with low vitamin D levels and their relationship with blood pressure…

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...

Superfoods: the evidence

We examine the evidence behind the health claims of the most popular superfoods

Clinical trials and medical research

Clinical trials explained, including how to take part in one and why medical research is important

Atlas of risk

NHS Atlas of Risk

Compare cause of death and health risks based on age, sex and where you live

Strength and Flex

Download our Strength and flexibility podcast series and get a free personal trainer