Behind the Headlines

Your guide to the science that makes the news

Women's cancer risk may increase the longer they're obese

Wednesday Aug 17 2016

"Fat women who refuse to diet 'are more likely to get cancer'," states the Mail Online, using a headline that is both inaccurate and offensive. The study it reports on looked at the relationship between weight during adulthood, and cancer risk…

'Walk or cycle to work to lose weight' says study

Tuesday Jul 19 2016

"Pedalling the pounds away: Why cycling could be the best way to lose weight," says The Daily Telegraph, reporting on a UK study comparing how different methods of commuting affected obesity levels...

Obesity 'now a leading cause of death; especially in men'

Thursday Jul 14 2016

"Being overweight or obese puts men at a greater risk of dying prematurely than women," BBC News reports. A survey of global trends found obesity was now second only to smoking as a cause of premature death in Europe…

Should we 'eat breakfast like a king and dinner like a pauper'?

Thursday Jun 23 2016

"We should 'eat breakfast like a king' to fight obesity, scientists claim," the Daily Mirror reports. The headline was prompted by a new review into "chrono-nutrition", which involves seeing if when we eat is as important as what we eat…

BMI categories may need adjusting, argue researchers

Wednesday May 11 2016

"Being overweight may not be as unhealthy as it was 40 years ago," BBC News reports. New research has found a body mass index (BMI) of 27 is linked to the lowest rate of death – but someone with a BMI of 27 is currently classed as being overweight...

Can you really 'catch' obesity?

Thursday May 5 2016

"Obesity could be contagious like superbug C diff, suggest scientists," The Daily Telegraph reports. This rather alarming headline follows a study that explored characteristics of bacteria living in the human gut...

Obesity epidemic blamed for rise in womb cancer

Wednesday Apr 13 2016

"Obesity 'likely culprit' behind womb cancer rise," reports BBC News. Cancer Research UK has released data showing a marked increase in cases of womb cancer over the last two decades, and obesity seems to be the likely reason…

Global obesity rates expected to soar in next decade

Friday Apr 1 2016

"One-fifth of adults worldwide will be obese by 2025," The Guardian reports, while The Sun warns that the "UK's population to be fattest in Europe" by the same date. These are just some of the conclusions of a major…

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?

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

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