Home visiting my family for a couple of weeks, I’m in the kitchen rustling up a delicious, super-sized omelette when mum comes in. I cringe and expect the usual criticism of my cooking skills but get something different.
Mum: “Five eggs!? Don’t you know that they will give you a heart attack?! I thought you would know about such things.”
Me: “I do. I’m fine mum. It’s fine.”
Mum: “Didn’t you see the headline in the paper?”
[Mum sets this incontrovertible evidence on the counter. Looks smug.]
How do you think I reacted?
Don’t believe everything you read
If something is written in the newspaper or on a popular TV station then it’s taken by most to automatically be true. I can understand that. We shouldn’t have to view everything with a critical eye but that’s just the way things have become.
Here are some eggy headlines over recent years:
“Eggs Linked To Diabetes.”
“Regular Eggs: No Harm To Health”
“Eggs Linked To Increased Risk Of Heart Disease”
“Eggs Improve Glucose Control”
Widen the focus from eggs a little and there are hundreds more like it. – It’s tough to know what we can eat anymore!
Are you frustrated? It seems we’re swimming in such a vast pool of information nowadays that it’s tough to determine the good from the bad. Journalists don’t necessarily intend to lie, they just weren’t able to spot the bad science and so spread misleading or wrong information without knowing.
Though easy to feel powerless it doesn’t have to be that way. Most of the time you don’t need a scientific background to find out quickly that a study is flawed and the headline rejected. Here’s an entertaining video that shows you how.
Learning to spot the good science from the bad is important. If you don’t then life may suddenly become a whole lot less delicious. – That whole “Is Sugar Toxic?” nonsense a prime example.
So what was my reaction? I just carried on cooking anyway. Eleven years of whipping up omelettes, this one too delicious to not be eaten. I knew I had my trump card up my sleeve – the video even nearly elicited an apology. Victory!
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