Behind the Headlines

Your guide to the science that makes the news

Children's screen time linked to diabetes risk factors

Tuesday Mar 14 2017

"Children who are allowed more than three hours of screentime a day are at greater risk of developing diabetes," The Guardian reports. In a new study, UK researchers found a link between three hours or more of screen time and risk factors…

Hair loss drugs linked with erectile dysfunction

Monday Mar 13 2017

"Men who take this drug [finasteride] to combat baldness are 'five times more likely to suffer erectile dysfunction'," The Sun reports. While this may sound hair-raising, the actual evidence the paper is reporting on is not a major cause for concern…

Parents told to use pram covers to protect babies from air pollution

Friday Mar 10 2017

"Parents warned to use pram covers to protect babies from air pollution," reports The Daily Telegraph. The advice is prompted by a UK study where researchers simulated a normal walk to school in Guildford…

'Tooth loss link to increased risk of dementia'

Thursday Mar 9 2017

"Dementia breakthrough: Brushing your teeth 'can help ward off devastating condition'," reads the Daily Express. The news is based on a study that found tooth loss was associated with an increased risk...

Substance found in red wine 'helps fight ageing'

Wednesday Mar 8 2017

“Red wine can ‘help fight the ageing process’ – but how much would you have to drink?,” is the question posed by The Sun, after a US study suggested a substance found in the skin of red grapes may help keep muscles and nerves healthy as we get older...

Mediterranean diet linked to lower risk of one type of breast cancer

Tuesday Mar 7 2017

"Eating a Mediterranean diet 'cuts deadly breast cancer risk by 40%' in postmenopausal women," says the Mail Online of a widely reported study carried out by researchers in the Netherlands...

Is red hair gene linked to increased risk of Parkinson's?

Monday Mar 6 2017

"Redheads are more likely to develop Parkinson's," claims the Mail Online after a study found the gene that makes people with red hair susceptible to skin cancer also increases the risk of brain disease...

Artificial mouse embryos created

Friday Mar 3 2017

"Artificial human life could soon be grown from scratch in the lab, after scientists successfully created a mammal embryo using only stem cells," reports The Daily Telegraph, which is an extremely premature claim…

Regular activity may help some people stay 'fat and fit'

Thursday Mar 2 2017

"You can be fat and healthy," is the misleading headline from the Daily Mail. While a Dutch study did find that activity could help avoid the increased risk of cardiovascular disease associated with obesity…

Wide range of cancers now linked to being overweight

Wednesday Mar 1 2017

"Increased risk of 11 types of cancer linked to being overweight," The Guardian reports. A new review in the BMJ found strong evidence of a link between body weight and 11 types of cancer, most of them either digestive…

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