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AllanfromWales1 t1_ix3bu3w wrote

21 authors!

Note that the only statistically significant result was the increased high-density lipoprotein cholesterol. All the others quoted were "low certainty of evidence". Surprised that got through peer review.


ribnag t1_ix45u6g wrote

That's still a valuable finding, though - Increasing HDL without increasing total cholesterol is actually pretty hard to do. If something as simple as adding a bit of honey to my morning oatmeal can manage that, pass me some o' that yummy bee vomit!


jjsav t1_ix4zpio wrote

A problem rarely addressed in science is that if you run a lot of statistical tests on a lot of variables, then by chance some will come out as significant. That's the point. If you use 0.05 as the cut off, then run 20 tests just by chance one will likely come out as significant.


Parafault t1_ix5v3k7 wrote

I don’t trust “pure data” statistical studies unless they can back it up with a convincing and well-established mechanism. Data alone can tell you whatever you want it to, if you look at it from the right angle.


cygnoids t1_ix57yc6 wrote

But this is why you use posthoc tests, which account for the number of tests and variables


MilesDominic t1_ix59zuh wrote

Increasing HDL has no clinical relevant benefit.


ribnag t1_ix5b9fz wrote

If you're referring to studies like this one, that's not quite what they're saying. You're right, it's not as simple as HDL is "good" cholesterol. As they conclude, though,

> Compared with low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C), HDL‑C is of secondary importance for cardiovascular risk stratification and the calculation of the LDL-C:HDL‑C ratio is not useful for all patients. Low HDL‑C levels should prompt a search for additional metabolic and inflammatory pathologies. An increase in HDL‑C through lifestyle changes (e.g. smoking cessation and physical exercise) has positive effects and is recommended; however, HDL‑C is currently not a valid target for drug therapy.


Publius82 t1_ix5shye wrote

It sounds like the hdl bump might just mask a problem without providing concrete benefit


LeoIsRude t1_ix3ja4o wrote

So, if I'm understanding correctly, the title is BS and honey basically does nothing for your health?


AllanfromWales1 t1_ix3l661 wrote

Perhaps more accurately, the evidence is not very conclusive on most of the claims.


Darth_Face2021 t1_ix3pjuy wrote

What makes it worse is that if you make a lot of claims, it becomes less surprising that one might coincidentally meet some standard for significance.


rebuilding-year t1_ix40mli wrote

It even has a name! P-hacking. If you look at 20 different factors, the likelihood that one of them has a statistical significance better than 0.05 is quite high. If you then ignore those that aren't significant and focus only on the one that is, it makes the finding seem more legitimate than it is.


usefully_useless t1_ix4gguz wrote

This exactly. Assuming the 20 factors are independent and that the true effect of each factor is zero (i.e. none of them actually do anything), then when using a 5% significance level the probability of finding statistical significance in at least one of the factors (at least one false positive) is about 64%.

There’s a reason that we’re facing a replication crisis, and that reason is the prevalence of p-hacking. (There’s an argument that the overwhelming preference for positive results in academic journals and the publication requirements most departments have for tenure are indirectly responsible for this problem as well, but that’s a different discussion.)


somedave t1_ix4eane wrote

Reviewed by the honey producers of America!


FranticPonE t1_ix5f95d wrote

Ooooh, publication credit pile papers with little evidence, I love these!

Also if you need a sample for proof that "peer review" as it stands today is nigh worthless, here's one.


INTP-1 t1_ix4f37u wrote

As long as honey is not as actively harmful as other sugars, it's still a great potential alternative for sweetening food and beverage.


PieOverToo t1_ix6amly wrote

I don't think you should really draw that conclusion here.

Don't get me wrong, I love honey and would be delighted if these findings were replicated and confirmed, but...I wouldn't hold your breath


silent519 t1_ix7kfug wrote

> All the others quoted were "low certainty of evidence". Surprised that got through peer review.

it would fail peer review, if they would incorrectly value certainty. it's not like they lie about it.