Why you can trust this website
As a professional clinical nutritionist, I am duty-bound to create content that is accurate, easy to understand and up to date. All content is based on sound evidence from trusted sources. When I quote reliable studies and sources I use this symbol;
Checking the facts, being candid, using plain English and updating regularly.
Checking the facts: I double and triple check the facts upon which I base my dietary advice and my articles. I fact-check for other journalists too, who write about food, but who have no nutritional expertise.
Being candid: I will always share uncertainty with my readers and clients and point out where there is no medical consensus, or where experts don’t agree. Similarly, I will draw attention to new findings that call into question established truths.
Using plain English: I will always translate a complex medical word if it is unavoidable to use it. But you will generally find me using good old-fashioned nursery terminology like the word poo, instead of technical terms such as faeces.
Updating: All my pages and blogs are dated, and reviewed at least every 2 years and updated where necessary.
Using trusted sources
I draw evidence from reliable peer reviewed medical/nutritional journals and recognised experts and expert institutions. You will see the symbol at the top of every page and at the bottom of each article you will find some further reading that complies with the these evidence-based criteria. The trusted research I use is filtered to ensure that the results and conclusions are:
Some studies are not as rigorous as they should be, the reporting of statistics can be misleading. Other laboratories are tainted by commercialism: I always check the funding of the research I include.
As a preference I report results from large scale epidemiological studies and randomised controlled trials. Larger studies have less chance of the results being biased because of a small sample. Normally I report on studies that show a 95% certainty that the statistics reported are the result of a real correlation or cause, rather than chance.
I will look at the type of people who were tested or studied, prioritising European or UK studies, with a proportion of women, a range of ages and relevant lifestyles. For example, a study of adolescent male athletes may not be relevant to any of my clients. Similarly, animal studies may provide some useful insights into mechanisms, but we are very different to mice, or fruit flies; such results prove nothing for humans.
A group of similar studies build-up to a body of evidence that becomes impossible to ignore. Meta-analysis (grouping of the results from several studies) can offer higher statistical exactitude.
Correlation is not causation. A good scientist always considers why results have been returned. I will explain, in as simple terms as possible, the scientific rational behind the statistics. If it doesn’t make sense to me, I don’t use the research.
Wherever possible I provide a citation to a study that is freely available online. I urge you to read these studies, they have been selected for their accuracy, their legibility and because they are up to date. Sometimes I refer to an older study which was influential and has stood the test of time. The older studies are more difficult to find on the internet, but can be found in some public libraries or by visiting (on-line or in person) the Wellcome Medical History Library at London, Euston.