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jeudi 19 mai 2016

John Ioannidis is right: knowledge of "experts" in human food is at the best mediocre: so are the derived government policies

I wrote a tribune in Le Monde about this issue. It was about the color coding of food by "experts" and the fallacy of this initiative which is not backed by science. Now after the last US dietary guidelines the evidence is compelling. The low fat is a fallacy but will they change their color coding? The answer is no because the process is too rigid and only based on a british equation...

The worst is coming because food "experts" try to implement governmental policies usually with tax payer money but without any proof of efficiency.
A publication issue devoted to taxes and subsidies for "better" health through F&V consumption. No conflict of interest mentioned and no opponent to the tax and subsidy policy.

"But evaluating the effect of health-related food taxes and subsidies using randomised
controlled trials is usually infeasible, and as such we rely upon results from modelling
studies and natural experiments of real-life taxes and subsidies."
P. Scarborough

Some "experts" went far away from science, as shown in this graph:
Inline images 1
Tax payer money to subsidy the "price" of F & V: the crazy world of "models"

"Estimated effects on population health in New Zealand
Our model predicted that a 20% subsidy on the price of fruit and vegetables would increase total population fruit and vegetable intakes by approximately 12% and 18% respectively, and prevent or postpone about 560 deaths each year (2% annual all-cause mortality). 20% taxes on major dietary sources of saturated fat and sodium would prevent or postpone approximately 1,500 and
2,000 deaths respectively. Estimates were that combining taxes on foods high in saturated fat and sodium with a fruit and vegetable subsidy would prevent or postpone about 2,400 deaths (8%
annual all-cause mortality). All effects were similar or greater for Maori and low-income households in relative terms."

And eventually RCT are feasible but they need to be funded and this money is not so easy to convert in votes as majority of trials will be negative as emphasised Ioannidis.

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