Perhaps like you, HumanaNatura is an active consumer and communicator of health science. Our use of science spans the design and guidelines of our four-part Natural Health System, the health and quality of life articles of our Article Library, and the updates we provide via NaturaLife on new scientific studies and research. Today, there is of course a lot of good and even great science available, which after all is the principal hallmark and driving force of our times. But there is a lot of bad science too – experiments and studies that are poorly conceived, conducted sloppily, or used to bolster rather than validate the soundness of a hypothesis or economic endeavor. So how do we, and you, separate good science from bad pseudoscience, and navigate conflicting scientific claims when we encounter them?
Ben Goldacre’s funny and insightful new presentation at TED, Battling Bad Science, offers important guidance for ferreting out bad science from good, and we hope you will give it a view.
For HumanaNatura, our approach to the use of science is to always look for peer-reviewed, independent research by established scientific institutions. We place a premium on randomized clinical trials and double-blind studies, consider experimental design and sampling methods before we publish, and look for findings that have been validated by multiple teams over time (including meta-analyses of earlier research). We always remember and normally highlight when a study suggests causation or correlation, remain careful with researcher and press inferences from experimental findings, and know that all dominating theories and paradigms are subject to refinement and revision based on new evidence. At the same time, we also understand the power of cross-disciplinary analyses and know these can begin crudely, appreciate rough new insights into existing research and data, and recognize that some studies may be less than perfect but still promising – all cases suggesting the need for added investigation, while still offering cause for pause.
Today, becoming an informed consumer of science is critical to progressive health and quality of life for individuals, communities, and our global society. We hope these guidelines are helpful to you and that you will always feel free to ask questions on the science that HumanaNatura uses and presents.
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