This is a topic that has been long overdue to be discussed because literally, anyone with a blog seems to get away with calling themselves a source of trusted medical information. This certainly isn’t the case, and the reasoning behind this should be obvious. Alas, it isn’t, but that isn’t the fault of the public.
Only those involved in the sciences have a visceral understanding of what qualifies as trusted information within a field because only they contend with the rigors necessary to become a trusted piece of information, or a trusted source thereof.
So, today we’re going to describe exactly what makes any sort of scientific information trusted, and medical information is very much scientific. We will also point out some red flags that will make it easy for you to very quickly determine when something is a load of nonsense, as well.
Before we do so, though, we want to point out that we don’t wish to tread on your personal beliefs. While, spoilers, one of the red flags is the involvement of any sort of faith or mysticism, this does not mean that we expect you to extricate this from your lives. We ask only that you prioritize science when it comes to your health, with any sort of faith or belief following thereafter, and complying with the science.
In the sciences, any sort of publication, statement, or theory only receives credence within the community when it is properly peer-reviewed.
In other words, colleagues and peers of the individual in question must read what they say, and cite any objections or contradictions that they feel need to be addressed regarding what is said. If it has not withstood the litmus test that is peer-reviewed, then it is not yet valid.
When it comes to trusted medical information, it is very easy to spot or-reviewed information by the entities that sign off on said information.
The FDA, various respected medical institutions within the developed world, etc. need to sign off on either a blog as a whole, an individual writing the blog, or a particular publication. When it comes to a supplement, drug or other pharmacological concern, clinical trials should be cited, very transparently, before you trust them.
So, let’s talk about some red flags that will indicate when it’s just a blogger who fancies themselves a fitness/medical expert when they really aren’t.
Any time that they prioritize ancient, herbalist, or otherwise holistic medications, while entirely vilifying pharmaceuticals, that’s a definite red flag.
Whenever they cite that the ancient world knew more about medicine than the modern world, that is also very much a red flag. If they clearly have a vested interest in selling a supplement, that is a tremendous red flag.
If the page about the author does not cite them as a professional within the field they are discussing, with a significant pedigree that is a red flag.
Finally, if the comments on the blog or website, by trusted medical professionals, contradict or largely criticize what is said, is better to listen to the ones criticizing, because chances are, the information itself is no good.
Only go with trusted medical information when making any kind of decision about medication, supplement, or any kind of change to your diet/fitness routine. Blindly the following advice isn’t just foolish, it’s potentially deadly!