Behind the Headlines

Your guide to the science that makes the news

Breastfeeding 'doesn't boost children's intelligence'

Tuesday Mar 28 2017

"Scientists found tots given the boob had the same IQ at age three and five compared to bottle-fed youngsters," The Sun reports in its own unique way. An Irish study has found no significant differences in cognitive development between the two groups…

Mixing alcohol and energy drinks 'may be a risky cocktail'

Thursday Mar 23 2017

"Mixing energy drinks with alcohol could be a risky combination, leading to a greater risk of accidents and injuries," BBC News report. A review of evidence found a number of potential risks, but the picture was not as clear-cut as reported…

Grandparents 'may be first to spot autism in a child'

Friday Mar 17 2017

"Grandmas are usually the first to spot autism in children," the Mail Online reports. The headline was prompted by a US online survey of parents and family members of children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD)...

Can yoga and breathing really help 'cure' depression?

Thursday Mar 16 2017

"Taking yoga classes can help ease depressive symptoms, a new study says," reports the Mail Online. A small study from the US found yoga was associated with a clinically significant improvement in depression symptoms…

'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...

Link between herpes in pregnancy and autism is unconfirmed

Friday Feb 24 2017

"Pregnant women infected with herpes are 'TWICE as likely to have a baby with autism'," The Sun reports. However, the results the of the study it reports on, was based on just 14 women...

Worrying about work out-of-hours 'may be bad for the heart'

Monday Feb 20 2017

"Taking work home can be deadly," the Daily Mail warns. A small study of London-based office workers found those who reported being frequently troubled by work-related issues had patterns of heart activity associated with stress and anxiety…

Could brain scans be used to screen for autism?

Friday Feb 17 2017

"Brain scans could identify babies most at risk of developing autism, study shows," The Guardian reports. Researchers think that looking for distinct changes in infant brains could identify some children with autistic spectrum disorder (ASD)…

Anxiety and depression linked to increased cancer death risk

Thursday Jan 26 2017

"Depression linked to higher chance of dying from cancer," The Independent reports. Analysis of UK data found a link between mental distress and cancer mortality, which remained even after other factors such as smoking were taken into account…

UK survey finds around 1 in 13 women report pain during sex

Thursday Jan 26 2017

"Nearly 1 in 10 British women [7.5%] finds sex painful, according to a big study," BBC News reports. The study's results highlight the arguably neglected issue of pain during sex – dyspareunia – which some women may be too…

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