"Synthetic chemical in consumer products linked to early death, study finds.” “People with the highest levels of phthalates had a greater risk of death from any cause, especially cardiovascular mortality, according to a study published today in a peer-reviewed journal.” Let’s take a look behind the headlines, at the study itself, to see what it actually says. [1]
Here's another example of the difference between statistical correlation and causation. Maybe it's best to agree on a plausible path of causation before looking for the correlation. That way it avoids fishing expeditions.
Clickbait – provocative and intentionally misleading headlines online, designed to draw in newspaper or magazine readers – are nothing new to ACSH, or one of our trusted advisors. Have things gotten worse? That advisor, Dr. Jeffrey Singer (pictured), wonders whether scientific studies have stooped to an extremely low level.
Myopia or near-sightedness, and higher levels of education are associated. But which came first? And which is the cause? Can genetic information help us to convert correlation to causation while answering this chicken-or-egg question?