Everyday we hear the latest on what's good or bad for us. It very hard to understand which side to believe. I will give you an idea of what I look for when deciding the validity of a study.
Where did this study get the money from? Is it a large giving institution known to be hands off like the Howard Hughes institute, a grant from a University endowment, a private fund or and non profit? Was it funded by a conglomerate, corporation, funded think take, special, interest or lobbying group?
I find it more reliable when money is coming from hands off sources and not from companies that would want to see certain results.
This isn’t just fast food or junk food either there are health foods that make exaggerated claims that fund studies with the goal of results in their favor too.
Who- Who published the study a peer reviewed journal or another source?
Where- Is the location of the journal relevant? (i.e. is the population they studied relevant to you?)
When- How recent was this study conducted?
Has it been published or is this early data?
Species- Was it done on humans or a different mammal? Its best to wait if they haven’t conducted the study on humans yet.
Type- Is it a double blind with 1 control group and 1 testing group?
Was it a self reporting study? (where you expect the subject to be honest i.e. honestly tell me how many slices of pizza you ate or how many ounce of wine you had)
Was it a survey (asking questions about your diet and health status)?
Is it a large study?
Did it include men and women? Different age groups? Different weights? Different demographics?
How long was it? A day, a week, a year, 40 years?
Is it a meta study? - A study that just take many other studies and make conclusions from that. Not always bad but you would want to look at all the studies they include in their research.
Has the experiment been replicated by another group, lab, or center?
There is so much that goes into deciding what to take into consideration for ones self but for me I prefer the following:
Longer studies, with a large amount of HUMAN participants from ALL genders, variety of demographics. In a supervised double blind study. That has had its results reproduced by others. With funding from a unbiased source and published in reputable journal in a country with rigid standards.
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