Behind the Headlines

Your guide to the science that makes the news

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…

People may be addicted to eating rather than food

Thursday Sep 11 2014

People may be addicted to eating rather than food

“Food is not addictive ... but eating is: Gorging is psychological compulsion, say experts,” the Mail Online reports. The news follows an article in which scientists argue that – unlike drug addiction...

Brain can be ‘retrained’ to prefer healthy foods

Tuesday Sep 2 2014

Brains retrained to prefer healthier foods

“The brain can be trained to prefer healthy food over unhealthy high-calorie foods, using a diet which does not leave people hungry,” reports BBC News. It reports on a small pilot study involving 13 overweight and obese people…

Does weight loss surgery affect dementia risk?

Wednesday Aug 27 2014

Weight loss surgery 'may protect against Alzheimer's'

"Weight loss surgery 'reduces chance of Alzheimer's disease'," reports The Daily Telegraph. This misleading headline reports on a small Brazilian study of severely obese women before and after weight loss surgery. None of the women had any signs…

Breakfast 'not the most important meal of the day'

Tuesday Aug 26 2014

Breakfast 'not the most important meal of the day'

"Breakfast might not be the most important meal of the day after all,” the Mail Online reports.The concept that breakfast is the most important meal of the day is up there in the pantheon of received wisdom…

'Fat and 30' link to dementia is inconclusive

Thursday Aug 21 2014

Being 'fat and 30' ups dementia risk

“People as young as 30 who are obese may be at greater risk [of dementia],” The Independent reports. This UK study examined a set 14-year period (1998 to 2011) and looked at whether…

Is UK obesity fuelling an increase in 10 cancers?

Thursday Aug 14 2014

Obesity is known to be associated with increased risk of cancer

"Being overweight and obese puts people at greater risk of developing 10 of the most common cancers," reports BBC News. The news is based on research using information in UK GP records for over 5 million people...

Anti-obesity drugs 'may still work in middle-age'

Wednesday Aug 13 2014

Middle-age spread is best dealt with by eating less and getting more exercise

“Drug to halt the dreaded spread of middle age,” reports The Daily Telegraph, with similar headlines on the Daily Express and Daily Mail websites. However, these claims are rather premature given the research they’re based on anti-obesity drugs...

Dieting can leave some people 'feeling depressed'

Friday Aug 8 2014

Dieting can leave some people 'feeling depressed'

"It's official; dieting does make us depressed," laments the Mail Online. A study of 1,979 overweight and obese people found that those who lost 5% of their bodyweight were nearly twice as likely to feel some symptoms of depression...

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...

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