A fraud is exposed, but it’s a much larger problem:
Data dredging is fairly common in health research, and especially in studies involving food. It is one reason contradictory nutrition headlines seem to be the norm: One week coffee, cheese and red wine are found to be protective against heart disease and cancer, and the next week a new crop of studies pronounce that they cause it. Marion Nestle, a professor of nutrition, food studies and public health at New York University, said that many researchers are under enormous pressure to churn out papers. One recent analysis found that thousands of scientists publish a paper every five days.
I liked this:
“P-hacking is a really serious problem,” said Dr. Ivan Oransky, a co-founder of Retraction Watch, who teaches medical journalism at New York University. “Not to be overly dramatic, but in some ways it throws into question the very statistical basis of what we’re reading as science journalists and as the public.”
You don’t say.
It goes far beyond nutrition. A lot of drug research is based on this sort of thing as well, including the statin scam.