Behind the Headlines' 2015 Quiz of the Year

Behind the Headlines

Tuesday December 29 2015

There is a total of 24 points up for grabs

2015 was another busy year for health news

In 2015, Behind the Headlines covered more than 500 health stories that made it into the mainstream media.

Why not test your knowledge of 2015's health news with our month-by-month quiz?

If you've been paying attention, you should find this quiz both easy and fun.

Answers are at the bottom of the page – no peeking! 

Questions

In January 2015's health news...

1. What activity was said to increase the risk of heart disease?

a) playing violent video games

b) sexual role playing

c) angry tweeting

2. Eating like a what was claimed to reduce obesity risk?

a) a Native American

b) a Zulu

c) a Viking

In February 2015's health news...

3. Doing what was said to increase pain tolerance?

a) shouting "ow" (or something stronger)

b) clenching your fists

c) hopping up and down for a few seconds

4. Pro-opiomelanocortin neural pathways may have provided a clue to what phenomena?

a) sleep paralysis

b) cannabis "munchies"

c) stammering

In March 2015's health news...

5. The Independent claimed (with no proof) that what would make you "more gorgeous"?

a) spray tan

b) high heels

c) drinking alcohol

6. Which actress announced she was having preventative surgery to remove her ovaries?

a) Helen Mirren

b) Angelina Jolie

c) Jennifer Aniston  

In April 2015's health news...

7. According to the Metro, which sportsmen make the best sexual partners?

a) weight lifters

b) marathon runners

c) tennis players

8. According to a small study, there is no such thing as what?

a) chemo brain

b) having sex on the brain

c) baby brain  

In May 2015's health news...

9. Advances in bioengineering technology led to fears criminals could produce what?

a) plastic explosives

b) "home-brew" heroin

c) poison darts

10. A Facebook post that quickly went viral made what incorrect claim?

a) the NHS was going to start charging for European Health Insurance Cards (EHICs)

b) Calpol was available free on the NHS for all parents under the minor ailment scheme

c) there weren't going to be enough flu jabs to go around this winter  

In June 2015's health news...

11. According to The Daily Telegraph, what was blamed for making children stupid?

a) iPads

b) cats

c) sugar

12. What could provide a clue to treating CJD?

a) brain-eating cannibals

b) ketamine addicts

c) dolphins  

In July 2015's health news...

13. Who got the blame for childhood obesity?

a) Coco the Coco Pops mascot

b) Homer Simpson and Peppa Pig

c) parents

14. What may actually be a bad idea to do after a traumatic event?

a) sleeping on it

b) talking to friends and family

c) having a good cry  

In August 2015's health news...

15. What was said to be more dangerous than tobacco smoke?

a) diesel fumes

b) incense

c) smoke produced by disposable barbecues

16. What was claimed to be a "hotbed of bacterial infection"?

a) your computer keyboard

b) your phone

c) your purse  

In September 2015's health news...

17. What product was said to be too sweet?

a) energy drinks

b) chewing gum

c) baby food

18. What activity was claimed to help prevent osteoporosis?

a) hopping

b) skipping

c) jumping 

In October 2015's health news...

19. What animal could provide a clue about treating cancer?

a) tortoises

b) elephants

c) hippos

20. What food was claimed to be a potential treatment for cancer?

a) turnips

b) potatoes

c) rhubarb   

In November 2015's health news...

21. What was said to keep our guts healthy?

a) yam-flavoured yoghurt

b) battling bugs

c) probiotic peanut butter

22. Where is the precuneus and why was it in the news?

a) a gland in the neck found to help prevent the common cold

b) a region of the brain said to be associated with happiness

c) a muscle in the lower back that can become inflamed in office workers   

In December 2015's health news...

23. Who may be to blame if you're obese?

a) the government

b) chip shops

c) your dad

24. What was said to reduce the risk of stomach cancer?

a) potatoes

b) parsley

c) peas

Answers

January

1. What activity was said to increase the risk of heart disease?

c) angry tweeting 

A US study found a link at the community level between angry tweeting and above-average rates of heart disease.

2. Eating like a what was claimed to reduce obesity risk?

c) a Viking 

People put on a Nordic diet of wholegrain products, vegetables, root vegetables, berries, fruit, low-fat dairy products, rapeseed oil and three servings of fish a week had reduced levels of inflammation.

February 

3. Doing what was said to increase pain tolerance?

a) shouting "ow" (or something stronger)

A study found that people who shouted "ow" tended to be able to keep their hands submerged in very cold water longer than people told to stay silent.

4. Pro-opiomelanocortin neural pathways may have provided a clue to what phenomena?

b) cannabis "munchies"

Cannabis was found to stimulate this pathway in the brain, which in turn activated the brain's "appetite centre".

March

5. The Independent claimed (with no proof) that what would make you "more gorgeous"?

c) drinking alcohol

The "science" turned out to be an experiment carried out under highly artificial conditions.

6. Which actress announced she was having preventative surgery to remove her ovaries?

b) Angelina Jolie

The actress announced the news after tests showed she had a one in two chance of developing ovarian cancer.

April

7. According to the Metro, which sportsmen make the best sexual partners?

b) marathon runners

A study claimed (without much evidence) that male marathon runners had high levels of testosterone, linked to reproductive success. 

8. According to a small study, there is no such thing as what?

c) baby brain

Alleged memory lapses and problems with concentration during pregnancy were said to be a myth.

May

9. Advances in bioengineering technology led to fears that criminals could produce what?

b) "home-brew" heroin

A US government-funded study found it was technically feasible to produce opiates using genetically modified yeast strains.

10. A Facebook post that quickly went viral made what incorrect claim?

b) Calpol is available free on the NHS for all parents under the minor ailment scheme

Actually, only some parents are entitled to free medication for their children.

June

11. According to The Daily Telegraph, what was blamed for making children stupid?

b) cats

A study warned that exposure to the parasite Toxoplasma gondii, found in cats, could affect children's cognitive ability.

12. What could provide a clue to treating CJD?

a) brain-eating cannibals

Researchers were looking at people resistant to kuru – a disease spread among tribespeople in Papua New Guinea through the tradition of eating the brains of deceased relatives.

July

13. Who got the blame for childhood obesity?

b) Homer Simpson and Peppa Pig

A series of psychological experiments found a link between exposure to overweight characters and children overeating unhealthy food.

14. What may actually be a bad idea to do after a traumatic event?

a) sleeping on it

A small psychological experiment carried out at Oxford University suggests that sleep could possibly embed traumatic events in the memory.

August

15. What was said to be more dangerous than tobacco smoke?

b) incense

Lab-based research found that incense smoke could trigger mutations in the DNA of animal and bacteria cells.

16. What was claimed to be a "hotbed of bacterial infection"?

c) your purse

A study found that 95% of purses checked by researchers contained bacteria.

September

17. What product was said to be too sweet?

c) baby food

Researchers from the University of Glasgow found that shop-bought baby food may encourage a sweet tooth, thanks to the sugar content and use of sweet-tasting veg.

18. What activity was claimed to help prevent osteoporosis?

a) hopping

A small study looked at the benefits of hopping for bone density in a group of healthy older men.

October

19. What animal could provide a clue about treating cancer?

b) elephants

Researchers found that elephants have at least 20 copies of a gene called TP53, which protects against the spread of mutated cells.

20. What food was claimed to be a potential treatment for cancer?

c) rhubarb

Researchers found that a concentrated form of the chemical physcion – which gives rhubarb stems their colour – killed leukaemia cells in the lab.

November

21. What was said to keep our guts healthy?

b) battling bugs

Research suggests that competition between different strains of bacteria inside the gut boosts immune function.

22. Where is the precuneus and why was it in the news?

b) a region of the brain said to be associated with happiness

Japanese researchers found an association between the size of the precuneus and subjective happiness.

December

23. Who may be to blame if you're obese?

c) your dad

A small study suggested that changes in sperm DNA could contribute towards obesity risk

24. What was said to reduce stomach cancer risk?

a) potatoes 

Sadly for chip and crisp lovers, the media misreported the results of a complex study – there's no evidence that eating potatoes will reduce your risk of stomach cancer.

Scores

0-2: Dr Evil – "It's Dr Evil. I didn't spend six years in Evil Medical School to be called 'mister', thank you very much."

3-5: Dr Julius No – Bond villain and guano miner (really).

6-8: Dr Hannibal Lecter – a psychiatrist known to take a very hands-on approach to some of his patients.

9-11: Dr Victor Frankenstein – tragic hero or grave robber, take your pick (as Victor often did).

12-15: Dr Abraham Van Helsing – vampire hunter.

16-19: Dr John Dolittle – noted vet.

21-23: Dr Yuri Zhivago – "a poet in a brutal world".

24: Dr Beverly Crusher – cures diseases, provides relationship advice, and fights the Borg.

Thanks for taking part. We hope you had fun, and have a happy and healthy 2016. 

Edited by NHS Choices. Follow NHS Choices on Twitter. Join the Healthy Evidence forum.

Edited by NHS Choices

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