FX uses the scientific method better then JAMA?

Brian W. Tague taguebw at wfu.edu
Tue Dec 12 17:47:18 EST 1995

<U27111 at uicvm.uic.edu> wrote:
>"Brian W. Tague" <taguebw at wfu.edu> wrote:
>>From JAMA's homepage:
>>The Effect of Sugar on Behavior or Cognition in Children
>>A Meta-analysis
>>Mark L. Wolraich, MD; David B. Wilson, PhD; J. Wade White, MD
>Thanks for going to the trouble of finding and posting this.
>Something I probably should've done (and read) myself before
>starting this thread? ...nah.  :-)

Probably, yah.

>Well... this certainly doesn't tell us anything at all at the
>various credibility/believability of all the different papers
>involved (how many of those in Medline were even peer-reviewed in
>the first place?).

First: you've been telling us that peer-review doesn't mean anything 
anyway. So why are you concerned about it now.

Second: if you really wanted to refute the findings why don't you 
actually get the article and look up the more than a dozen studies that 
they analyzed. I am sure that would tell you how many were peer 

Third: you're willing to believe a non-experiment on TV because it
agrees with your observations? And dismiss a number of studies because
you haven't seen them? There have been many observations throughout 
history that everyone "knew" where true that had no basis in fact -- the 
basis of sexism and racism come to mind.

>All this really tells me is that this is obviously a mainstream
>position of the field... 

But it probably wasn't at first: as the authors state, it is the 
expectation of most people  that sugar DOES cause hyperactivity. 
If "sugar does NOT cause hyperactivity" is now the mainstream position 
of the field, it is probably because the studies indicate that that is 
the case.

>>The researchers write: "This meta-analysis of the reported studies
>>to date found that sugar (mainly sucrose) does not affect the
>>behavior or cognitive performance of children.
>I love how forcefully they state this... typical science language -
> stating this almost as now we can consider this a *fact*!
>>The researchers conclude: "Although the current evidence gives no
>>support for the effect of sugar on behavior, there are not
>>currently enough studies to reach a definitive conclusion.
>Oh... but you must always include a back door for your self... just
>in case of that off chance you may be wrong.

You are contradicting yourself. You say look "how forcefully they state 
this" like they are trying to push this thesis even though they qualify 
themselves in the next statement. And then you jump on them for 
qualifying themselves. 
>How I love Science in the 90's!  The blind just blindly follows the

How can you call some 16 studies giving the same conclusion the blind 
leading the blind?

And elsewhere:

>And at this point I would believe FX over JAMA.  And just because
>FX is not an official scientific publication... yes, I would excuse
>them for not 'strictly adhering to the scientific methods'.  But at
>least they identified what the scientific method is in their
>program and gave attention to where they were deficient.

So it's OK for FX to say, well "here are some deficiencies" but if the 
JAMA author's say "but the studies are not complete enough", it's an 
escape hatch?

So it's simply organized science that you hate so much?

>The JAMA study may have been funded by the sugar

>Now I'm more inclined to believe the authors of the study may have
>been men who have never raised children on their own.  ???

>And where am I today?  A cashier in a bakery.

Now I'm beginning to understand....

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