Updated: Apr 10, 2022
THE LEVELS OF SCIENTIFIC PROOF: I’VE DONE MY RESEARCH
This post is one that I hold dear to my heart. Probably because it affects all of us personally. Misinformation. The constant flood of false information dilutes the truth so much that we have trouble telling the two apart. It takes exponentially more energy to deconstruct and debunk misinformation that it does to produce it and that is precisely why it’s unlikely to ever go away. One can spend days researching a single question or subject, but in seconds a non-expert can post a comment that totally puts the author's credibility into question.
Plant-based, vegan or vegetarian diets have lots of myths and misinformation surrounding them. Rabbit food, protein deficiencies, nutrient deficiencies and soy phobia are just some of the common false beliefs that come with plant-based diets. Believe me, even with extremely strong science backing up the benefits of a plant predominant pattern of eating, some will never buy in to my "plant-based propaganda".
Recently, I posted an article about keto diets. I knew I would get haters, and I anticipated and pre-planned my reaction. So when someone attacked and accused me of cherry-picking the data to force people to obey my “agenda”, I kind of chuckled and choked on my coffee. It was funny for a second, and then it wasn’t anymore. The last thing I want to do is divide people. The opposite actually. My whole mission is to help my community get healthier and to bring the teaching of nutritional science to medical schools. Doctors need to learn more about preventing disease through nutrition. Period.
For those unaware of the term “cherry-picking”, I’m basically being accused of choosing to reference only studies that have conclusions that align with my values. Firstly, my values are what they are because of the science, not the other way around. And secondly, the absolute opposite of cherry picking data is relying on peer reviewed, randomized controlled trials and then looking at meta-analysis of these trials. A meta-analysis is a statistical analysis of multiple different studies addressing the same question, aka the exact opposite of cherry picking. Anyways, I spent 14 hours researching, writing and publishing a review on keto, for one single person to take 5 seconds to reply and I quote: “Typical plant based “expert” telling us we’ll all die if we don’t bend to his will and go plant based too. No thanks. I’ll stick with what works for me.” And just like that, with zero effort, zero research and zero scientific background, a random guy deconstructs my work and puts my credibility into question. Believe me, I creeped him and his profile and I confirm he is not a closet nutrition expert. I don’t blame people for not knowing who to believe, not one bit. I went to medical school and also had trouble deciphering what was considered a healthy eating pattern. Doctors are poorly trained in nutrition and that’s a huge problem, but the main issue is our food system and how big corporations control the messages diffused to us and our children. Remember that just a few generations ago, processed foods didn’t even exist, yet today, more than 50% of our children’s calories come from ultra-processed foods, and we are unlikely to ever live in a world without them. Somehow, companies control what information we see and hear and they've done a great job in normalizing the