Is Moderate Carbohydrate Intake the Best?

Recently, a giant paper on carbohydrate consumption and mortality was published in The Lancet. The paper discussed the findings of a prospective cohort study and a meta-analysis of several cohort studies. Studies like this are often the ones that generate the most hype, which is always bizarre to me given that higher quality randomized studies almost never receive any attention. As a result of all the noise (see below), I had to discuss the study in question. Read More

Chocolate Milk Is Delicious, Not Magic

Chocolate milk is one of the few drinks in sports nutrition to have a pretty good reputation. Not only is it delicious, but it’s also rich in calcium, carbohydrates, flavonoids, and electrolytes. These are nutrients that seem to aid sports performance. The conclusions froma few studies over the years have supported its use for improving sports performance. However, there are also several contradictory findings that didn’t find it to be superior to other sports drinks that contain carbohydrates and electrolytes. Read More

Vitamin E, Mortality, and the Bayesian Gloss

Bayesian data analysis is beginning to gain traction in several fields. Some of those reasons include that it allows individuals to represent uncertainty using probability distributions and it helps them avoid losing information that’s typically lost with point estimates and dichotomization. Bayesian inference also allows for relevant background information to be incorporated into a model using a more continuous approach rather than making binary decisions about what to include. Read More

Meta-Analysis: Choose Your Model Wisely

Why Do a Meta-Analysis? Meta-Analyses are statistical techniques where we take the treatment effects from several studies and pool them to estimate the overall treatment effect. This type of analysis is conducted so that we can get a precise estimate of the true treatment effect or estimate the mean of several true treatment effects and to notice how robust the effects are across studies. If the individual study treatment effects tend to vary substantially across the studies (true heterogeneity, separated from random error), then we want to explore the sources of this observed dispersion. Read More

It's Looking Bad for Fish Oil and CVD

Fish oil supplements and cardiovascular disease have had a long and controversial history. There was a lot of inconsistency in the research around supplementation and several organizations only added to this confusion. The incomplete reporting by media outlets have also confused the public. Here, I’ll give a brief timeline of the evidence for fish oil and CVD outcomes. 1970s | A group of explorers noticed that people who consumed fish also had lower incidences of heart disease. Read More