Behind the Headlines

Your guide to the science that makes the news

BMI tests 'miss' over a quarter of obese children

Monday Oct 20 2014

BMI tests 'missing' over a quarter of obese children

"Quarter of obese children missed by BMI tests," the Mail Online reports. The headline was prompted by a review that combined the results of 37 studies in more than 50,000 children and found body mass index (BMI)…

Exercise data signs could cut sugary drink intake

Friday Oct 17 2014

Exercise data signs help cut sugary drink intake

"Signs warning shoppers how much exercise they need to do to burn off calories in sugary drinks can encourage healthier choices," BBC News reports. Signs in shops in an area of Baltimore led to a change in shopping habits amongst teenagers…

Crash diets 'work best' claim misguided

Thursday Oct 16 2014

Crash diets 'can work' claim

“Crash diets DO work, claim experts,” the Mail Online reports. It reports on an Australian study involving 200 obese adults who were randomly assigned to either a 12-week rapid weight loss programme on a very low-calorie diet…

Healthy food 'costs you more' claim

Thursday Oct 9 2014

Healthy food 'costs you more' claim

“Healthy food now costs three times as much as junk, study shows,” The Independent reports. It also reports a sharper rise in the cost of fruit and veg over the past decade compared to other types of foods…

Eating with a fat friend 'makes you eat more'

Monday Oct 6 2014

Eating with a fat friend 'makes you eat more' claim

"Sitting next to overweight people makes you more likely to gorge on unhealthy food," the Daily Express reports. A study involving an actress in a fat suit found that people tended to eat more when she was wearing the suit…

Deep-fried Mars bars: no link with sudden stroke

Tuesday Sep 30 2014

Deep-fried Mars bars will probably not give you a stroke

“Eating a deep-fried Mars bar could give you a stroke in minutes,” reports Metro. However, the study that prompted this headline found no evidence that the Scottish snack can potentially trigger a fatal stroke within minutes...

Skirt size increase ups breast cancer risk

Thursday Sep 25 2014

Skirt size increases ups breast cancer risk

“Skirt size increase linked to breast cancer risk,” BBC News reports. The story comes from a UK study that looked at whether changes in women's skirt size since their twenties was associated with increased risk of breast cancer...

Watch less TV to prevent obesity, says NICE

Tuesday Sep 23 2014

Watch less TV to prevent obesity, says NICE

“Take TV-free days to combat obesity, health experts urge,” The Guardian reports. This is one of a range of new recommendations from the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE)…

Do artificial sweeteners raise diabetes risk?

Thursday Sep 18 2014

Artificial sweeteners may actually raise diabetes risk

"Artificial sweeteners may promote diabetes, claim scientists," reports The Guardian. But before you go clearing your fridge of diet colas, the research in question – extensive as it was – was mainly in mice…

Sugar intake guideline 'needs lowering'

Tuesday Sep 16 2014

Sugar intake guideline 'needs lowering'

"Sugar intake must be slashed further, say scientists," BBC News reports. A new study suggests that lowering the recommended limit to less than 3% would improve public dental health…

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