The importance of nutrition in medicine is increasingly being discussed. In response, a new book was compiled entitled Nutrition in Lifestyle Medicine edited by Dr. James Rippe. In it, my wife and colleague Dr. Michelle Bohan Brown and I wrote a chapter about “Critical Evaluation of Nutrition Research.”
The chapter walks through a number of challenges in evaluating and communicating research in general and nutrition in particular. We try to keep the topic lighthearted, with the hope that encouraging critical evaluation will not induce unabashed cynicism.
After presenting a talk for the ConAgra Food Science Institute Nutri-bites Webinars organized by Dr. Rippe entitled, “In the Eye of the Beholder: Critical Evaluation of Nutrition Research,” I was honored to be invited to contribute a chapter on a similar topic. This topic is one that Michelle and I have conducted research on, such as our paper about the reporting of the relationships between skipping breakfast and obesity. I was delighted we were able to work together again on this chapter.
Reflecting on our experiences writing letters to editors and authors to try to improve the literature through post-publication peer review, we were invited to write a comment in Nature, which we titled “Reproducibility: A tragedy of errors”.
Over the course of at least 18 months, we wrote numerous letters to editors and authors, including direct contacts, contacts through submission systems, and PubMed Commons. The effort took much time and was often frustratingly slow, including sometimes ending without a resolution. Continue reading
UPDATE 2015-12-18. GEBN has stopped operations. I hope to get permission to post our article reviews elsewhere so they can continue to contribute to the conversation.
A group of us in the Office of Energetics at the University of Alabama at Birmingham are pairing with the Global Energy Balance Network to foster conversations on the science of energy balance.
Our goal will be to represent the highlights of recent science, presented through a scientific lens that we hope will avoid the overselling of research that is all-too-common in research communication today. In each article, we will present the results of the research in context, provide an overview of the scientific methodology employed, and explain why we found the study to be particularly interesting, paradigm shifting, creative, or otherwise noteworthy.
Led by Dr. David Allison and myself, the group of investigators will include Dr. Kathryn A Kaiser, Dr. Greg Pavela, and Dr. Brandon George. We also hope to invite others to coauthor these articles with us. Visit GEBN and join the conversation!
TITLE: Increased Fruit and Vegetable Intake Has No Discernible Effect on Weight Loss: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis
AUTHORS/INSTITUTIONS: K.A. Kaiser, A.W. Brown, M.M. Bohan Brown, J.M. Shikany, R.D. Mattes, D.B. Allison
MEETING: Obesity Week 2013 Continue reading
Title: Treatment with taurine and vitamin E did not reverse fatty liver more than a chow diet in rats.
Meeting: Evaluating Bioactive Food Components in Obesity and Cancer Prevention. Continue reading