In our technology-driven world, it's more common than ever for people to search for health information online. Information overload us with all this data makes it challenging to discern accuracy from false claims. Have you ever heard, read or watched something with nutrition advice and thought, “wow that almost sounds too good to be true?”
Not all advice we see online or in media is true or telling you the full story...
To help you sort through the noise and find the best available nutrition info, here are 5 tips to help you spot misinformation:
1. Is the person or product promising a quick fix like massive strength gains, performance increase, fast weight-loss or a miracle cure?
If it sounds too good to be true, then it likely is. It’s about the long haul and true commitment to sustainable change that will lead to results. Those 10 day cleanses may lead to less weight on the scale, but it's basically water weight. Plus, any fat loss will readily be re-gained once you begin eating food again.
2. Are they trying to sell you products such as a product or supplement instead of teaching you how to make better food choices for your life?
Supplements are mean to do exactly that - supplement a diet! Fat loss pills or other quick fixes are NOT the way to go. Nutrition and lifestyle recommendations which are realistic and sustainable are the ones we should be interested in.
3. Do they provide information based on personal stories rather than on facts?
Although it's nice to hear about a success story from a celebrity, BUTTTT it's not proof that something works or is true. Nutrition advice should be based on the best available scientific research.
4. Is their claim based on a single study or a few research studies? Were the studies with animals or humans? Are you similar to the humans that were studied (age, gender etc.)?
The stronger the study design, and the more studies available that draw the same conclusions, the stronger the evidence that something it true.
5. What are the person’s qualifications? Do the people providing the information have biases?
You wouldn’t ask a celebrity for medical advice, so why take their nutrition tips? Dr. Oz was a cardiologist NOT specializing in nutrition. Yes he was very knowledgable but in a different field. Just like the producers for Game Changers are founders of a plant-based product company.
Try this little at-home experiment to practice getting the best evidence-based accurate information:
1. Select a nutrition topic you are curious about and use credible sites to research it.
2. The next time you encounter nutrition information you are unsure about, ask these questions:
3. Look beyond the headlines.
You don't need to be a dietitian or scientist to be inquisitive! Trust your judgement and don't be afraid to ask questions (especially why)!
DISCLAIMER: For those of you who have watched Game Changers...proceed with caution. Perhaps watch it again and ask yourself some of the questions above. Then, see if your opinion has changed.
Feeling overwhelmed or lost?
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