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Good gut bacteria 'helps starving children'

A diet rich in bananas, chickpeas and peanuts improves gut bacteria in malnourished children, helping kick-start their growth, research suggests.

These foods were found to be particularly good at boosting healthy microbes, in a US study of children in Bangladesh, according to BBC.

The growth of bones, brains and bodies is then more likely.

The World Health Organization said about 150 million children under five around the world were malnourished.

As well as being weak and small, many malnourished children end up with incomplete or "immature" communities of bacteria in the gut, compared with healthy children of the same age.

Bladder cancer 'attacked and killed by common cold virus'

A strain of the common cold virus can infect and kill bladder cancer cells, a small study suggests.

All signs of the disease disappeared in one patient, and in 14 others there was evidence that cancer cells had died.

University of Surrey researchers said the virus could "help revolutionise treatment" for the cancer and reduce the risk of it recurring, according to BBC.

A bladder cancer charity called the study "very exciting" if larger studies confirmed the findings.

Supplements do barely anything to protect you from heart disease or early death, study finds

Most nutritional supplements offer no protection against an early death, a major review has found.

Multivitamins, fish oil and antioxidants are among the products taken by millions of people which make no difference to mortality rates, experts found.

A team of academics at West Virginia University in the US analysed 277 trials, involving a combined 1 million people, to determine the effects of 16 different nutritional supplements and eight dietary interventions, according to Daily Mail.

The Smoking 'damages eyes as well as lungs'

Millions of people in the world are putting their sight at risk by continuing to smoke, warn specialists.

Despite the clear connection, only one in five people recognise that smoking can lead to blindness, a poll for the Association of Optometrists (AOP) finds.

Smokers are twice as likely to lose their sight compared with non-smokers, says Doctors.

That is because tobacco smoke can cause and worsen a number of eye conditions.

Cigarette smoke contains toxic chemicals that can irritate and harm the eyes.

Oranges, grapes and carrots contain cancer-fighting

Oranges, grapes and carrots may contain cancer-fighting compounds that closely resemble those used in licensed drugs, research suggests.

A study found that out of more than 7,900 molecules within fruits and vegetables, 110 have the potential to battle tumours, according to Daily Mail.

This was based on the molecules' likeness to compounds found in existing anti-cancer medications.

Fruits and vegetables are rich in antioxidants called flavonoids, which give them their colour.

Flavonoids may help prevent cancer by suppressing inflammation, controlling cell replication and even inducing tumour 'suicide'.