Junkfood Science: August 2017

August 18, 2017

Note to My Readers

Dear Readers,

Thank you, again, for your continued support. I continue to passionately believe that everyone deserves sound information about their bodies and health, their food, and the world we live in. I also believe that public policies and clinical guidelines should be based on the soundest science and reasoned risk-benefit analysis, and to have been proven to actually help and not harm people. Sadly, that's largely not the case today. Most pop science - what is believed to be science in media and politics, being taught in schools and universities today, and popularly believed – is often the furthest thing from the reasoned, careful scientific process that has guided progress and advancement for over a century. The "science" being taught today is very troubling and scientific literacy is the lowest I've seen in my lifetime. Worse, rather than science and advancements being viewed positively as bringing great benefits to people and our world, it is being used for politics and marketing like never before. Rather than celebrate the positive things that can come from good science, we are surrounded by fears, with ominous views of our health and our world. Fear sells, products and policies, but is rarely credible.

It has becoming increasingly difficult, and nearly impossible, for people (consumers and professionals alike) to find credible and factual information. Internet searches and search engines now bring up screened, limited content that is predominately marketing, political and agenda-driven. Credible science, original sources and objective critical analyses rarely appear. Media has become an expanse of junk science, uncredible sources, disinformation and doublespeak, politics and marketing. Even formerly credible sources, organizations and publications have to be read with a critical eye. All of us are now on our own to question everything, seek out original sources and do our own fact-checking, research and critical thinking. You'll be surprised at how much of what "everyone knows" is not true.

As a medical professional, it is extremely troubling to see history repeating itself with the rise of healthism and anti-science, and how medical ethics has been redefined to no longer protect individuals and preserve the doctor-patient relationship, but to increase the power and control of government over lives. The abandonment of the Hippocratic Oath, alone, has cost lives and resulted in the loss of many of the finest medical professionals and medical practices. The quality of education and licensing of nursing and medical professionals has crumbled to the point where credentials don't mean what they once did. I hope new young professionals realize that most of their learning needs to come after they've gotten out of school and will require diligence, hard work and critical thinking on their part. Sadly, it has never been more imperative for consumers to not only do their own research, but to seek second opinions and fight for the medical care they need and deserve.

My personal commitment is unchanged. I have updated the links on the right side of this blog to provide you with alternative information sources. I hope the articles continue to offer tools to help you critically examine the studies and news reports we encounter everyday. Disregard the dates on the posts because the messages have remained surprisingly current. You can take the very same techniques and critical thinking to do your own analysis of the latest claims. Junk science has a way of being repeated for decades, as it is the "science" that never progresses with sound scientific information. On the far lower right hand column, you'll also find a search engine to search on topics of interest from past posts. I'm leaving this site up in hopes that the information will continue to be of help to you and your loved ones.

Warmly,

Sandy

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