Posts Tagged ‘scientific integrity’

Agenda-Driven Science to Justify Fixed Policy Preferences

May 2, 2024 — On the subject of nutrition and health, we commonly encounter strong statements presented as scientific truths that must be honored. Headlines scream that “ultra-processed food is killing us,” using studies of correlation to justify sounding an alarm. “Cows are just an environmental disaster,” says Hannah Ritchie in the New York Times. But with equally great […]

Seven Points of Misinformation on American Dietary Guidelines

April 15, 2024 — “Trust no one.” This classic line sets up thrillers, mysteries, and the moment we seem to be living. Trust in institutions is low and misinformation proliferates through electronic and social media. Because we are in the middle of a very careful, transparent, and public process for developing a new edition of Dietary Guidelines for Americans, […]

Appealing Narratives Untethered from the Truth

March 31, 2024 — Narratives are powerful because humanity has a natural inclination to tell stories. We seek to understand our world through the stories we tell. But this sets up a problem for nutrition and obesity science. Appealing narratives untethered from the truth can take decades to recognize as misleading. All too often, this happens only after policymakers […]

Public Confidence in Science Is High, but Declining

March 11, 2024 — We can point to any number of symptoms. The rise of measles because of skepticism about vaccination comes to mind. Certainly, we hear from people who reject scientific concepts about obesity. So it’s no surprise to us that a new report in PNAS documents high but declining public confidence in science. Arthur Lupia, David Allison, […]

Exercise Self-Reports Predict Less Benefit for Men Than Women?

February 29, 2024 — What could explain the observation that self-reports of exercise predict less of a benefit for men than women? In the Journal of the American College of Cardiology researchers nimbly leap to a conclusion that women get greater gains in mortality risk reduction from “equivalent doses” of physical activity. But would men exaggerate their self-reports? When […]

The Correct Answer Is Breastfeeding. What’s the Question?

January 22, 2024 — Breastfeeding is such a good idea. But unfortunately, it doesn’t do much to prevent obesity. No matter. On the subject of breastfeeding and preventing obesity in children, we have policy-based evidence – the answer is preset. A new paper in Pediatrics lines up with this. Based on yet another finding of an association between breastfeeding […]

10,000 Retractions: A 2023 Milestone for Research Integrity?

December 22, 2023 — The year we are now closing marks a new record in retractions of research papers – more than 10,000 in a single year. Reporting for Nature, Richard Van Norden provides details about this milestone in research integrity. Does this impressive number mark progress? Or merely signal that the challenge of research integrity is enormous? A […]

The Top 10 Most Read Posts of 2023 on ConscienHealth

December 21, 2023 — No two ways about it. This has been a big year of milestones in obesity and health. We and many others are still processing what we have witnessed in these past 12 months. But one way to gain perspective is to look at 2023 stats for the posts on ConscienHealth that you, a wise group […]

Opaque Transparency in the Promise to Share Data

August 12, 2023 — Research integrity is a hot topic these days. People want to know that they can rely upon scientific publications to be accurate reflections of an honest inquiry to find the answer to a research question. Toward this end, data sharing is an important commitment. Increasingly, researchers pledge to share their data in the interest of […]

Dishonest Research About Honesty

August 1, 2023 — What is it about research into honesty that attracts such problems? Retractions of papers about honesty in human behavior are multiplying like tribbles. Harvard is seeking retraction of three papers written by a star of behavioral research – Professor Francesca Gino. Her research was all about honesty. This is the most recent of a series […]