Monday, 12 October 2015

Everyone is different Part 4, Fallacies and another rant!

Cont'd from Bray et al shows that a calorie *is* a calorie (where weight change is concerned).

The other day, an article about Ruth Frechman appeared in my Facebook News Feed.
See A nutritionist shares pictures of everything she eats in a day

The article (written by an editor, not a dietician) started "If you're trying to eat right, then following the diet of a nutritionist is probably a good start." This infers that everyone should eat the same diet, and that diet is what Ruth Frechman ate on that particular day.

Uh, nope! That doesn't follow. The whole article is based on a non sequitur fallacy.

From the reactions on Facebook, you'd think that Ruth Frechman had just admitted to being a serial kitten-murderess. The link to the above article had the following accompanying text:-
"Imagine booking an appointment to see a nutritionist in the hope that it would improve your health and appearance...

And this haggard looking, snack-munching zombie greeted you at her office."
Dismissing someone's knowledge because of their diet and/or perceived appearance is an ad hominem fallacy.

I posted the following status:-
"As I'm unable to leave comments on that News Feed item, I'm sharing it, with the following observations.
1. Dismissing a person's knowledge because of what they look like is an ad hominem fallacy.
2. Insults are scraping the bottom of the debating barrel. Stay classy!
3. The main reason why people go to a dietician is because those people are fatter than they want to be. If YOUR logic is that a weight-loss advisor must look as though they're using their own weight-loss advice and it's working, would YOU get weight-loss advice from the man in the blue shirt? and"

Yesterday, the following post appeared in my News Feed:-
"In an article worthy of the Onion, Ruth Frechman provides conclusive proof that being a registered dietitian nutritionist means absolutely nothing. But wait...she is the author of that dietary classic "The Food Is My Friend Diet"

The very fact that this person has some degree of qualification and the implied authority that goes along with it suggests that we have reached the apex of nutritional stupidity and ignorance. The fact that Business Insider deem this worth sharing tells us they should stick to what they know.

So, join us as we snack on Popcorn, eat M&Ms, chug down fortified fruit juice, eat Quest bars and chewing gum...

There is an actual meal in there at one point, but it looks decidedly like something you might feed your dog, food is obviously not her friend, it's her fix.

Frechman, by her own account, seems to spend her days stressed, tired and hungry, and feels suitably entitled to share her own brand of self loathing with anyone who will part with the $.

Cut out the static. Learn to cook. Go for a walk. Breathe."

Uh, nope! We don't know how busy Ruth Frechman is, how much free time she has, what facilities she has for preparing meals and what foods she likes to eat. She's criticised for eating treats like popcorn and M&Ms, even though she's slim and apparently in good health.

Here's a link to her book:- Go to Page 33 and criticise THAT.

I can only conclude from some of the comments left on the above Facebook post that the world has a lot of judgemental arseholes.

Cont'd on Everyone is different Part 5, Vaccination.

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