September 15, 2021
C Ihekweazu, 2021. Is Coffee the Cause or the Cure? Conflicting Nutrition Messages in Two Decades of Online New York Times’ Nutrition News Coverage, Health Communications, published online.
Two-thirds of US adults report hearing news stories about diet and health relationships daily or a few times a week. These stories have often been labeled as conflicting. While public opinion suggests conflicting nutrition messages are widespread, there has been limited empirical research to support this belief. This study examined the prevalence of conflicting information in online New York Times’ news articles discussing published nutrition research between 1996-2016. It also examined the contextual differences that existed between conflicting studies. The final sample included 375 news articles discussing 416 diet and health relationships (228 distinct relationships). The most popular dietary items discussed were alcoholic beverages (n = 51), vitamin D (n = 26), and B vitamins (n = 23). Over the 20-year study period, 12.7% of the 228 diet and health relationships had conflicting reports. Just under three-fourths of the conflicting reports involved changes in study design, 79% involved changes in study population, and 31% involved changes in industry funding. Conflicting nutrition messages can have negative cognitive and behavioral consequences for individuals. To help effectively address conflicting nutrition news coverage, a multi-pronged approach involving journalists, researchers, and news audiences is needed.
Ja tak, jeg vil gerne modtage nyhedsbrev, når der er noget nyt om kaffe og helbred.