Archive | Science & health

Is Skipping Breakfast Deadly?


Is it bad for your health to skip breakfast? In the midst of the intermittent fasting hype, many were no doubt unnecessarily scared away by media alerts some time ago.

As usual this was just based on inconclusive statistics from a survey. There’s no evidence of any causation, as several news reports made it sound like:

To eat or not to eat

No wonder people stop listening to health alerts in the media. This is an excellent example of the bizarre reasoning that such statistical reports may lead to.

How can it, according to the study, be harmful not to eat, but yet more harmful to eat? Continue Reading →


Your iPhone Gives You Cancer – But Protects You From Malaria!


*** Warning – irony below! ***

Do you have an iPhone? Beware: according to new studies, having an iPhone increases your risk for breast and prostate cancer!

However, your iPhone will protect you from infectious diseases like tuberculosis, malaria and HIV. Hence, you don’t need to take malaria prophylaxis when traveling with your iPhone.

The above has been proven in many new scientific studies on cell phone habits among millions of people around the world. The map above is one example. Areas with many cell phones show an increased risk for cancer, while areas with few cell phones show an increased risk for malaria and certain other infections.


South Africa is tragically hard hit by HIV, despite many cell phones. This is the “South African Paradox”. Researchers speculate that perhaps wine drinking offers protection. Continue Reading →


Is the LCHF Diet a Threat to Public Health?


Headline: “The LCHF War Divides Sweden”

A low-carb and high-fat diet (LCHF) has become extremely popular in Sweden in recent years. Lots of Swedes are using it to lose weight and gain health. But there’s still plenty of resistance. The old-fashioned fear of fat is not dead yet. And this week saw some of the biggest headlines and media frenzy in years!

It all started with an opinion piece by a few senior fat-fearing professors, in Sweden’s biggest newspaper, called “The popular fat diets are a threat to public health” (link to Google translation).

This exploded into massive headlines in every paper and became the main piece of news on TV (I was on a morning show briefly to discuss it).

The most bizarre thing is that the opinion piece suggests that there’s been an increase in risk of heart disease & stroke in Sweden – and they blame the popularity of LCHF. However, the risk of heart disease and stroke in Sweden is on the contrary going down, faster and faster, according to the latest statistics:


Risk of heart disease to the left, stroke to the right. Top line for men, bottom line for women. Bigger picture.

Another silly health scare

It’s absolutely bizarre how little evidence is needed to trash low-carb diets. Continue Reading →


Eggs, Smoking and Silly Health Scares

Here’s the silliest health scare of the month:

Study: Eggs Are Nearly as Bad for Your Arteries as Cigarettes

As usual the headline is based on science of the fluffiest kind: an observational study. The sort that doesn’t prove cause and effect.

This egg-study is even weaker than usual. Instead of trying to make people remember what they ate last week they actually asked people how many egg yolks they ate decades ago. Quickly: How many egg yolks did you eat in 1987? Do you remember?

As usual those who ate more whole eggs during the low fat fad also smoked more etc. So we’re comparing people who ignore health advice with people who try to be healthy. There are thousands of differences between these two groups and it’s impossible to control for them all. But the authors of the study believe that it all comes down to egg yolks.

It’s silly and nobody who knows how these studies are done take the results too seriously. But the press loves them. They supply a never ending stream of juicy headlines.