Today I wanted to talk about something that has been on my mind for a while. That, of course, is the issue of where to get proper information about health, wellness, and fitness. It’s not about promoting and individual person or idea. But rather, my objective is to help everyone figure out where to go when they have a specific question. The problem I have with poor information outlets is that at best they are robbing you of your time and money. At worst, they can cause or exacerbate serious injury or illness.
What To Avoid And Why
In the past I have written about challenging our assumptions, particularly when it comes to fitness and wellness products. I hope this message reigns particularly true as you read through this section, because I am sure some of you currently follow some of these resources. So please have an open mind, and if you think I am wrong, then at the very least Google the name of the resource followed by the word “scam” and see what shows up. That being said, let it be known that the following sources have been shown to:
– Cherry-pick sources that agree with their beliefs while ignoring those that don’t.
– Not interpreting data within the full context of what is known about a topic.
– Over-extrapolating study results (like saying that findings from an animal trial apply directly to humans).
– Citing invalid or uncredible sources (using anecdotes as hard evidence as opposed to peer-reviewed literature)
#1 David Wolfe – I don’t even know where to begin with this guy. The more I read from him, the more I think he must be joking. But when it comes down to it, his “solutions” are just quick “fixes” that don’t actually do anything. He’s #1 on my list because he is so popular. So please stop helping the spread of misinformation if you currently are a follower.
#2 The Food Babe – Her fame is slowly fading, but she is still a great marketer. She’s best known for her ability to be a sensationalist, and scare people into avoiding foods. Her claims don’t even have a shred of research backing them. Her “deadly food” can often be good for you, and “chemicals you cant pronounce” are everywhere.
#3 Dr. Oz. – To start, there’s actual research showing that the majority of what he says isn’t correct or even wrong (1). He just can’t help but spread poor information. It’s time to say goodbye to the bad doctor.
#4 Dr. Mercola – This fraud is best know for his terrible customer service, fear mongering, and outright lies. That’s all I have to say about that.
#5 Natural News – I saved the best for last because it’s the easiest. Mike Adams and Natural News make claims that can be debunkedthrough a Bing search. You don’t even need Google! Althought their Wikipedia entry is quite entertaining.
These are my top 5 but here is the rest of the list: Abel James a.k.a The Fat-Burning Man, Andreas Eenfeldt a.k.a The Diet Doctor, Andrew Weil, Barry Sears, Billy DeMoss, Bob Harper, Chris Kresser, Dallas and Melissa Hartwig / The Whole30 / Whole9Life / Healthy Mama, Happy Baby , Dana McDonald a.k.a The Rebel Dietitian, Daniel Amen, Dave Asprey, David Perlmutter, Deepak Chopra, Diane Sanfilippo, Erin Elizabeth a.k.a The Health Nut, Gary Taubes, Gwyneth Paltrow, Jason Fung, Jeffrey Smith, Jillian Michaels, Jimmy Moore, Joel Fuhrman, Jonathan Bailor, Josh Axe, Katie a.k.a Wellness Mama, Kevin Trudeau, Kris Carr, Mark Hyman, Mark Sisson, Nina Teicholz, Oprah Winfrey, Pete Evans, Peter D’Adamo, Robb Wolf, Robert Atkins, Robert Lustig, Sally Fallon Morell, Sarah Wilson, Stephanie Greunke, Suzanne Somers, The Kardashians (All of them), Tim Ferriss, Tim Noakes, Tom Naughton a.k.a Fat Head, Tom O’Bryan, William Davis, Zoë Harcombe
Here’s Where You Should Go
#1 Alan Aragon – A researcher, a writer, and hilarious. Alan Aragon puts out fantastic work and I can’t recommend him enough. Check him out for some nutrition advice!
#2 Brad Schoenfeld – He should be your go to source for muscle building information. The guy puts out more research than I can read! He’s also a very down to Earth writer.
#3 James Fell – If for no other reason, you should follow him for his humor. James fell puts out wonderful information about general health and fitness and is extremely readable.
#4 Examine.com – Examine.com is a third party independent group that evaluates nutritional claims. However, if you want some solid information about that supplement you’re thinking about buying, go to them first and Google second.
#5 Whole Health Source – This is a great place to go if you want to learn some advanced knowledge in a particular area. If you want to go beyond the basics, this is the place to get your information from!
Here is the rest of the list: The ISSN Scoop, StrengTheory, My Sports Science, Body Recomposition, Adel Moussa, Amber Rogers, Armi Legge, Arya Sharma, Asker Jeukendrup, Bill Shrapnel, Brad Dieter, Colby Vorland, Dan Pardi, Danny Lennon, David Despain, Denise Minger, Dr. Spencer Nadolsky, Evelyn Carbsane, James Krieger, Jeff Rothschild, Johan Leech, John Berardi, Jose Antonio, Kamal Patel, Kevin Hall, Kevin C. Klatt, Laurent Bannock, Layne Norton, Lyle McDonald, Maria Brilaki, Martin MacDonald, Menno Henselmans, Michelle a.k.a The Fat Nutritionist, Mike Israetel, Mike Sweeney, Patrick Umphrey, Peter Clark, Rosanne Rust, Seth Yoder, Stephan Guyenet, Steven Novella, Tim Crowe, Yann Le Meur, Yoni Freedhoff
Making your way safely through the internet can be tough. There are loads of people just trying to help, but there are just about as many people who are more concerned about only making money. This is especially true when it comes to nutrition. Only a registered dietitian (RD) can give specific nutrition advice so that should be the gold standard credential you look for when reading about the author. Proper education is important, but when all else fails make sure to check with your personal doctor before making and radical decisions about your health.
1. Korownyk, C., Kolber, M. R., McCormack, J., Lam, V., Overbo, K., Cotton, C.. . Allan, G. M. (2014). Televised medical talk shows–what they recommend and the evidence to support their recommendations: A prospective observational study. BMJ (Clinical Research Ed.), 349(dec17 11), g7346-g7346. doi:10.1136/bmj.g7346