1. Information must be conveyed with art to make maximum impact.
Constantly and painstakingly evaluate how you are communicating. Is it effective? Do not go against human nature.
2. Tribalism undermines flexibility of thought.
Escape your tribe. Associate with those who think differently. Don’t be afraid to go against the grain.
3. Status jockeying, ego, virtue signaling, outrage culture, etc. can undermine the integrity of ideas and do just that more often than not.
Keep a clear long-term vision. What do you want to achieve? Ignore “clicks”, “being on the right side”, and unnecessary conflict. Focus on what you want to achieve.
4. The problem of bad nutrition science information is systemic and related to the history of media.
The pay-per-click model is bad for journalistic and scientific integrity. It leads to a look-at-me free-for-all. Even academic journals are now succumbing to this. The subscription model that preceded the Internet is better, because it allows some distance between sales and content.
Emphasize reform to online media models.
Attacking pseudoscience and promoting science is not enough.
5. Attacking quacks is, strategically, largely a waste of time (see #3 and #4).
A 100K follower “platform” is paltry compared to the media juggernaut that promotes pseudoscience.
Make friends with enemies. Until systemic change occurs, use your opponents’ networks to spread good science. Go on Dr. Oz.
Dunking on quacks without calling out the structural factors that give rise to their popularity is just as futile and self-serving as selling detox kits or green coffee extract.
The difference is that you can feel smug. Big deal.
6. Diets are not an effective vehicle for addressing the obesity epidemic. A change in diet is critical, but obesity is a political/cultural problem.
Learn what changes are needed to address the obesity epidemic. For every diet fact, talk about a social determinant of obesity. For every diet book promotion, promote a policy that addresses these social determinants.
This is the only way that we will achieve long-lasting changes in nutrition policy. Those who care about public health must come together around this reality.
This post will be updated and elaborated upon in future posts.