Daily Mail 6.10.2009
This article is so useful – because hopefully most people read this and saw it for the stupid madness that it is and my hope is that the same people start questioning all the other mad claims attached to the Mediterranean diet….
“Eating a Mediterranean diet could cut your risk of depression by 30%, according to researchers. Consuming plenty of olive oil, nuts, fruit and vegetables – like those living in warm countries by the Med – boosts the chances of a sunny outlook on life.” Shall we laugh or cry, dear blog readers?!
I wonder if anything else could have explained an observed difference in depression? Um, let me think – the climate? all that glorious sunny weather? the stunning scenery, lakes, mountains and coastlines everywhere? the wonderful sense of family and community that Mediterranean countries have? the vastly better work life balance that these populations enjoy? the fact that they don’t have “East Enders” to depress the hell out of them? the fact that the nights are more evenly light all year round (being nearer the equator). (After all, Finland have the darkest nights and the highest suicide rate – I’m sure this is just coincidence – the Finns just need to get some olive oil down them!)
What about even how we eat food – not what we eat? Mediterranean people enjoy long, sit down meals with friends, where they consume wonderfully high amounts of fat (meat, fish, cheese, eggs etc) and drink impressive amounts of red wine and laugh and enjoy time together. I wonder if olive oil is just not the same in a council flat in Hackney, with a tray on your lap, watching Corrie and worrying about unemployment?
Please remember how stupid and ludicrous and irresponsible this study and ‘conclusion’ is when you see what looks like a more plausible article about, say, the Mediterranean diet and heart disease. I have seen many articles on the Mediterranean diet and heart disease and they are similarly an assumed association between two variables when at least 100 other variables could and should be taken into account. All of this is bad science and it should be far better regulated than it is. You are as likely to find a link between being an Arsenal or a Newcastle season ticket holder and depression!
Seek out bad science and write about it fellow bloggers!