25 posts
Spotting spurious correlations in health news

When it comes to diet and health, you might see one day that a certain food decreases life expectancy. Then on another day, a different study suggests that food increases life expectancy. It’s hard to know which to believe. David Epstein provides some guidance: If you’ve watched a lot of NFL games, you’ve probably heard a commentator at some point trot out a stat like: “The Chicago Bears are undefeated...

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Cohort and age effects

I’m just gonna put this xkcd comic right here. Tags: causation, humor, xkcd

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Common statistical interpretation mistakes

Statistics is a game of subtleties, and you lose when you don’t pay attention to the details. Here are a handful of common mistakes when interpreting the numbers. In a nutshell: You get into trouble when you assume and ignore. Tags: causation, correlation, noise, pitfalls

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Meat and cancer

Meat as a cause of cancer has been the news as of late. Aaron Carroll for the Upshot describes why we should make a note but not freak out about it. This means that, if I buy what the W.H.O. is saying, if I decided today to start eating an extra three pieces of bacon every day for the next 30 years, my risk of getting colon cancer might go...

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