Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Lets get plastered

"Drink a Day may keep Older Women Sharp" says the headline from the NYT. Well this is entirely possible but once again the headline pushes it too far, neglecting to moderate this message. While the two studies they are reporting seem valid and did adjust for some other factors. It is possible and likely that this is the case, but until there are more controlled studies this cannot be proved.

The NYT does mention these things in their article (although they say nothing about controlling for other factors I foudn that elsewhere) but they do very kindly put the warning in that old ladies should not begin drinking... at the END of the article where I am so sure everyone is going to read it. Last sentance;

"The big challenge," he concluded, "is to make the recommendation in the right way."

Maybe I"m just picking on the times today because it is the first article I read. Everyone seems to be doing the same thing today (google news) and now I know why. Here is the original press release from the Wake Forest Study. Copy and paste around a bit and you got yourself an article. Unfortunately to make studies newsworthy they have to make them into amazing new claims. And while I certainly hope the claim here is true since I'd love to keep drinking into my 80s if I live that long, these studies don't prove it.

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