Pseudoscience and COVID – 19

Haven’t we all heard of the days of the “snake oil salesmen?” Those days are not gone – they just take on new disguises.

We are bombarded with health claims and nutrition information – some of what we hear is accurate and based on science and some of it is incorrect or exaggerated to sell products or make news headlines more enticing.

As Timothy Caulfield, author of the following article puts it:

“Cow urine, bleach and cocaine have all been recommended as COVID-19 cures — all guff. The pandemic has been cast as a leaked bioweapon, a byproduct of 5G wireless technology and a political hoax — all poppycock. And countless wellness gurus and alternative-medicine practitioners have pushed unproven potions, pills and practices as ways to ‘boost’ the immune system.”

Haven’t we had enough conflicting information about the coronovirus pandemic – so why do some so-called “experts” add to the misinformation?  The following article from Timothy Caulfield titled “Pseudoscience and COVID-19  – we’ve had enough already” explores this issue.

Sorting out Health Information

  • Does it make sense? Does it pose a risk? Is it too outrageous to believe?
  • What’s the source?  Avoid anecdotal evidence or personal experiences.
  • Is it selling something? This is a strong red flag of motives. Was it based on good science? If a study, does this meet these standards?
  • Was each variable studied? Was it randomized? Was it double-blinded? Was the information interpreted accurately? Was there obvious bias reported by the authors, i.e. conflicts of interest?
  • Has it stood the test of time? Has the finding been shown repeatedly in different studies, not just one?


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