Department

Ban Ice Cream?

Some scientific studies suggest that maybe we should!

Q:After reading some scientific reports, I wonder if we should consider a ban on ice cream!


A:Occasionally we get questions and comments—such as this one—that show some confusion among readers, the general public, and especially the media about interpreting scientific studies that indicate an association or correlation between an “activity” and an “event.” There’s a great temptation to label the activity as “cause” and the event as “effect,” “outcome,” or “consequence”—although the study merely reports an association or correlation. To illustrate, …

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