Saturday, December 13, 2014

The Last Blog Entry You Ever Need to Read About Nutrition

Want a sure-fire way to keep spinning your wheels in a quagmire of confusion while remaining conflicted about what to eat? Keep on reading blog entries about what "latest studies show". With new studies coming out daily (most of them not even peer reviewed or repeatable) you should be quite fuzzy on the whole thing in no time. 



Keep on buying the latest Best Selling nutrition book and fully buy into whatever slant of the month is being touted by the populous. Search especially long and hard for those articles that support your current way of thinking, they’re out there. No matter what you believe, it’s out there, somewhere. The Internet is an amazingly vast place with such an array of input of all types. You don't have to look very far or hard before you'll come across an article about a 'study' that proves what you 'believe' (or what you don’t want to believe) about nutrition. 


But then keep looking and you’ll soon find one that claims just the opposite is true, or that that original belief has been debunked and this is what we believe now.

In truth, studies don’t prove anything. A study is an experiment based on an assumption. That assumption is played out and the results are gathered and evaluated and conclusions are drawn. The evaluation and conclusion of results is a highly subjective practice. Anyone with a bias could easily create and publish a study showing their desired slant to be true. It happens all the time. Nothing from one study is conclusive, scientifically. The only scientifically significant results are those that occur in different studies initiated from different assumptions made by different parties at different times, yet yielding the same results. (that’s called being ‘repeatable’).

Anytime you read “latest study shows…” be alerted that someone is trying to fool you into thinking that a study in and of itself is conclusive. In fact, a single study that stands out and refutes a long-supported and agreed-upon result found in numerous other studies is probably not going to be considered statistically significant when you look at the whole picture. Not unless this new piece of information is tested over and over again. But that won’t stop bloggers and sensationalizing nutrition writers to prey upon our naiveté and confusion.


That's why, like a broken record, I keep repeating the same things over and over again. The same things my hero Jack LaLanne used to say sixty years ago. The trendy beliefs about what’s “good for you” and what’s “bad for you” have changed many times in those past sixty years, but Jack has been giving the same message the whole time. And I, too, am trying to impress upon a frantic community that it would be in their best interest to stop trying to ‘hack’ their body with the latest gimmick, diet, superfood, cleanse or whatever latest discovery of ‘what is good that used to be bad’ or ‘what’s now bad that they used to say was good’. 


But if you are tired of being confused. It’s actually pretty easy and simple. Step away from the "nutrition" part of the Internet. It is mostly bullshit. Written by ... well frankly written by anyone who has a computer and sees a possibility to make money or get some attention by feeding into what I see as a frenzy of confusion.  And the same with buying diet and nutrition books. There’s nothing new or valuable in there. 

The more time you spend reading about the latest findings, the less you will know.

When you’re ready to stop fooling yourself and you want to get real, then look for the foods that we’ve eaten  and thrived on as a species since the dawn of recorded time, and leave the rest of the garbage sitting on the shelves.

No comments: