August 27, 2011

Small Study – Do You Believe the Results?

When I started reading this blog, I was ready to do more research and thought this would also make a great blog – wrong, at least not the way I had hoped. With a small study – small being the key word; what can one infer from a study including only six people. And to not mention this in the blog means that either the author did not catch this or was passing off bad science as good science. Even the title can be misleading as chicken is seldom high fat unless cooked with the skin on and basted in fat drippings.

There is nothing particularly bad about small studies, but unless they are leading to larger studies, be careful what you read into them. The study used for this blog is just an example of poor science and very difficult to attach any validity to the findings. It is disappointing when a blogger does not mention the size of a study and leaves readers to discover this on their own.

The study was about a combination of spices used to negate the effects of high-fat meals. Great idea, but badly done.  Funds for large numbers of study participants are seldom available to studies of this type on spices.  The extract of the study may be read here.

Another issue not mentioned in the study is the fat content of the meal. Even when this article is read about the same study, nothing is defined about the fat content of the two meals. Also not mentioned is the food eaten by the participants on a normal basis which could potentially distort the results obtained for the triglyceride readings.

For me to have a tiny bit of faith in this small study would require many more facts which have been left out in reporting the study. This is a reader-beware type of blog.

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