Mixed Results

This week in class, we discussed the term and idea of “mixed results”. If we hear that multiple nutrition studies gave “mixed results” we can surmise that the nutrition treatment or modification or supplement had both positive and negative outcomes.

Critical readers examining that information will not make any changes because nothing definitive has been borne out.

A seminar I attended this week on the “leaky gut” had many rather exciting findings. It seemed as if the speaker recommended significant dietary changes in not only food but supplements. But after each finding and recommendation, she commented, “but study results are mixed”.

That was contrasted to a presentation by Walter Willett whom I heard earlier in the month. Not to be a fangirl but when Walter Willett talks, people listen.

Willett is an MD, PhD at Harvard who, for more than 40 years, has studied the diet, lifestyle and health of a lot of people. More than a quarter million subjects! Perhaps I should have mentioned that my leaky gut presenter offered many rat/mice study results.

But back to Willett. He is involved with the country’s largest and longest health studies ever conducted – first begun in 1976. Admittedly, these are observational studies as multi-decade randomized clinical trials would be impractical and frankly impossible.

When this group makes a proclamation about what we should or should NOT be eating or drinking, there are hundreds of thousands of US adults whose experience backs up the recommendations. If there is equivocation or “mixed results” there is no report.

One example of Dr. Willett’s recommendations was with regard to protein consumption. Decrease the incidence of coronary heart disease by substituting poultry or fish for that serving of red meat. It’s even more beneficial to eat nuts and beans occasionally as your protein. Not surprising.

Don’t rely on “mixed results” to be well,



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