Anyone who has been following the headlines in the last few months knows that there seems to be controversy over what is truth, what is fact, and who to believe. Science is finally getting the attention it deserves because it is a mechanism to try to set bias and personal beliefs aside and get as close to the truth as possible. It allows us to make decisions based on evidence and factual information, not profit or greed.
When it comes to health and medical information, social media and the internet in general can spread a great deal of false information with no scientific basis whatsoever. I see information daily that is posted solely to make money with no regard for the health or safety of the consumer. I get upset when I see ineffective, and unfounded claims based on no scientific evidence or facts whatsoever.
These issues got me thinking about a post I made in 2014 about an organization I rely on regularly:
According to their website, The Center for Science in the Public Interest is a consumer advocacy organization whose twin missions are to conduct innovative research and advocacy programs in health and nutrition, and provide consumers with current, useful information about their health and well-being. This is not an organization you can join, per se, but you can get involved in initiatives through them. They aim to represent the citizen’s interests before regulatory, judicial and legislative bodies on food, alcohol, health, the environment, and other issues. It strives to ensure that science and technology are used for the public good and to encourage scientists to engage in public-interest activities.
Since 1971, The Center for Science in the Public Interest has been a strong advocate for nutrition and health, food safety, alcohol policy, and sound science. One thing that they produce that I recommend subscribing to is their Nutrition Action Healthletter. This newsletter always manages to provide me with some bit of information that I was not aware of before reading it. They also provide many opportunities and ideas for ways to get involved and take action for change in your own community. One of my favorite things about this organization is their call to action campaigns. They will let you know what is going on related to food policy and help you contact your representatives to voice your concern over political decisions related to food.
I highly recommend that anyone working in the nutrition, preventative health, public health, or chronic disease management field follow this organization. They have been out in front advocating for the public interest for many years, usually before the public citizen is even aware of issues that are negatively affecting them. With multibillion dollar companies and industries promoting products based solely on profit, it is important to have a consumer watch dog like CSPI.