Why Scientific Studies Matter Less Than You Think

Uncategorized Sep 02, 2019

Did you ever see that episode of Adam Ruins Everything where he runs an "experiment" that shows that chocolate aids with weight loss. It was funny, but also shocking.

He kept running the same experiment until he got the result that he wanted (that's called p-hacking). This isn't uncommon in research. Just keep doing the same experiment until the numbers spit out bogus numbers. 

The media loved it. They published articles about how chocolate can help you lose weight. There was only one problem: the experiment was false.

It goes to show you how gullible the media are when it comes to this kind of research. 

Here's what I've noticed: the results in scientific studies are often far less spectacular than what the media say. There's always a difference between what the media say and what the raw data say. 

What I learned about scientific studies is that most of them are deeply flawed. They're flawed not because the researchers don't know what they're doing, but because of the limitations of modern science.

I'm not going to bore you with methodology and statistics. That's not why you subscribed to this e-mail. 

But until we have better tools, much better tools, for measuring and observing things, our interpretations will always be limited. 

I read somewhere that 40-50% of all medical research is disproven in five or six years. That means most of the stuff published today will be false tomorrow.

The point? Don't let the next sensational study change the way you eat. You're better off ignoring them. One study today will contradict the study yesterday. It keeps going and going. 

Confused on what to eat? Click here: https://bit.ly/2UQcLBW

Kevin

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