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Archive | Best Practices

Accounting for unknown interactions of co-coexisting factors that confounded causality conclusions in two studies

Dietary Interventions as now conducted incapable of rendering valid causal conclusions about specific substances, compounds or chemicals. This is because the near-infinite variations in foods produce unknown and unknowable co-contamination errors that are further confounded by preparation inconsistencies. This can be illustrated by comparing two recent dietary intervention studies — one studying Plastic-Derived Chemicals (Reus, […]

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Black Box meals: Lessons from five dietary intervention studies.

Black Box: “A complex system or device whose internal workings are hidden or not readily understood.” (From Oxford.)   Dietary intervention black boxes are those in which catering companies, institutional food preparers or even test subjects create meals whose sourcing, preparation, cooking, and serving details are mostly unknown and unguided by investigators. At best, food […]

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Dosing of a single compound to establish causality in dietary interventions & enable clinically valid health decisions.

“Inconsistent and contradictory results from nutrition studies conducted by different investigators continue to emerge, in part because of the inherent variability of natural products, as well as the unknown and therefore uncontrolled variables in study populations and experimental designs.” — The Challenge of Reproducibility and Accuracy in Nutrition Research: Resources and Pitfalls Dietary studies are […]

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Basic scientific lab standards — Best practices for a replicable dietary intervention

NOTES: All of the best practices described below have been developed and hands-on tested in an actual dietary intervention study as feasible and minimally disruptive in a commercial-standard kitchen. The kitchen must be treated as a laboratory; a recipe is a protocol; foods are reagents; every item used in preparation and cooking is equipment and […]

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How does the food chain get contaminated with plastic-derived chemicals?

BPA & phthalates (and other plasticizers) migrate, leach and flake from plastics BPA & phthalates migrate, leach and flake off of plastics primarily because they are not chemically bound to the plastic. It’s important to understand that any specific plastic is a mixture of one or more polymers along with a variety of additives like […]

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Why we did not include plant based milk substitutes

Plant-based milk — while growing rapidly — represents only 15% of milk consumption (Nielsen data) and is therefore not yet part of the typical American diet. Even more importantly for this study, plant-based milk substitutes are ultra-processed, industrially synthesized products which involve substantial contact with plastic chemicals. In addition to being a typical part of […]

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Best practices – Precise measurements

While the ingredients in cooked dishes are measured in tens or hundreds of grams per portion, herbs and spices are usually called for in fractions of a gram. While no peer-reviewed data exists, it seems unlikely that studies can maintain reproducability if ordinary ingredients can be measured to a tolerance of +/- 5 grams and […]

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Why a Dormitory Setting is Needed for replication and valid causal conclusions in Dietary Intervention Studies

Non-food-exposures (NFEs) — including environmental conditions — are so numerous and variable that a precise replication of those is impractical and, perhaps, impossible. See: Reducing Non-Food Exposures in dietary intervention studies. Plastic contamination is inescapable. Plastic micro-and nanoparticles —  as well as the chemical compounds used to produce the polymers — are ubiquitous in the […]

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Best practices — Herbs and Spices: Powerful in small amounts, precise measurement needed

See also: Best practices: Scale calibration Spices are at their most obvious as taste enhancers. No where is this more clearly illustrated than the results of a study that every mother would rank as a near-miracle — spices can induce high school students to like vegetables. At the foundational level, herbs and spices are well-tested […]

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