How do you feel about liars?
Do you keep them around as friends even after the trust is gone?
Are you a bit of liar yourself ? ? !
For everyone else who wasn’t offended, when was the last time you were hoodwinked (assuming you noticed) by a news story or health article? How did that make you feel?
Long after folk have cashed-in on the lie, they pretend that the advice was based on the ‘science’ of the time of course and that it was nothing to do with corporate interests.
It’s pervasive stuff in the health and fitness world, but also in our daily news and current affairs (particularly if you live in Scotland and rely on FM radio and cooncil telly to get your information:).
Deliberate misinformation has its various sources and motives. It might be your personal trainer telling you that ‘spin class will melt the fat from your body’ or big burger corp telling you ‘our grub is ok – just exercise more’. Or it could be a carefully managed sounding of public opinion disguised as a harmless tweet or a big pharma backed health study, you just need to ‘follow the money’, as they say.
Our papers and tellies have blurred the boundaries between entertainment and news in efforts to keep us reading. Although some of us are quite knowingly happy to buy into this bizzare situation, it’s properly insidious in nature when it steers faulty decision making that you and your family will most likely pay a heavy price for. It’s actually one of the few things that makes me angry… i thought everyone hates a liar but seemingly most of us don’t give a shit.
A warning….Once you spot the lies, it will be very difficult to unsee them again. You will become a cynical old bastard just like me.
But if you’re sick to death of the conflicting information via articles with clickbait headings like this one (sorry). Have you had enough of your state-controlled news sources misleading and lying to you, or by a greedy industry mostly looking to sell you stuff?
Nobody is capable of filtering out the nonsense 100%. But here are few things that rattle through my brain when encountering new information for the first time.
The integrity of the source?
Who benefits from this call to action?
Does the writer/source have a history of misleading?
Is there an associated cost to you (and gain for them) by heeding this advice? Follow the money!
Does someone stand to lose something, if the call to action is not heeded – as above?
Did you follow their advice before and did it work out?
Is the headline actually reflected within the article – look back up at the title periodically to get a feel for how it all ties together. Are you being ‘played like a trout’ as my late grandad would say?
This is a difficult one to spot unless you have the time to do your own research. It’s awfully easy for an unscrupulous writer to reference the one rogue study in a particular area that just happens to confirm his biases and support his article.
Does the article you are reading only loosely reference one source. Very common!
Look for references to meta-studies where possible, as these provide an overview of many studies done in an area. A study of studies.
What is Your Goal?
Do you currently have a loosely defined goal like many of my clients have intitially? Everyone wants to lose some weight, get fitter, healthier and build some muscle – all at the same time! Did you ever consider that these are different goals requiring different strategies and advice?
This is the reason it feels like one week wine is good for you, but not the next; run or don’t run; eat little and often or 2 meals a day; carbs or keto; breakfast is the best meal of the day – or is it? bla bla etc etc…
Remember our previous article on the importance of defining your goals? Here’s a good reason for doing so. If your goal happens to be building muscle or keeping fit and strong, then the study that says ‘fasting’ helps you live longer isn’t really aligned to your goals so please don’t even worry about it. We can fast 6 months from now after you’ve finished the current muscle building program – but perhaps best not to waste your hard earned gainz jumping all over the place chasing the latest shiny idea. Similarly, eating ‘healthily’ is quite often the very thing that derails fat-loss efforts in many of my clients. Orange juice, milk, bananas, avocados and nuts don’t really result in a ‘healthy’ outcome if consumed in excess.
Equally, the headline that states the Ketogenic diet is magic for fat loss doesn’t mean that drinking bulletproof (butter laden) coffee for the rest of your days is ‘healthy’.
Trust Your Gut!
If we feel a message is a bit OFF, sometimes it can be difficult to put our finger on why we feel that’s the case. But once you recognise this feeling, take it seriously is my advice.
If the double glazing salesman is bribing you with freebies, hurrying you to make a decision and getting angrier with each question you ask, then we don’t need to be clairvoyants to see something’s up.
Humans are inherently good at this stuff, so trust all ‘six’ of your senses, at least until more information is forthcoming.
So say you’ve applied the above ‘tests’ and are happy that this hypothetical news article/post is from a credible source. You can then assess whether it even chimes with your current goals and is therefore information worth the brain storage. If it doesn’t apply, move on.
If however you’re happy with the Daily Mail, Facebook or Netflix providing you with all of life’s knowledge, then you probably won’t be reading at this point! 🙂
P.S this article will be updated with cherry-picked references in the next update.
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