Dispelling nutrition myths, ranting, and occasionally, raving


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Hopping about hops

Still getting caught up on my article reading from the holidays. I started reading the article in the National Post entitled: Why beer’s good for you: Compound in hops may help fend off cold-like symptoms. I anticipated a blog post about how ridiculous the study was. However, the article turned out to be a little bit different from what one might expect based on the headline.

The research was done by the “Sapporo Medical University”. For those of you who don’t know; Sapporo is a beer. Clearly this study was not conducted by unbiased researchers. However, the author points out that this research should be taken with a grain of salt. One of the Sapporo researchers is quoted as saying that such small quantities of the cold-fighting compound were present in beer that a person would have to drink 30 beers in order to obtain the virus-fighting benefits. Obviously drinking 30 beers for any reason, not just for cold protection, is unreasonable. Despite this, the potential benefits that could be obtained from this compound (humulone which is present in the hops in beer) are an interesting outcome of the research.

Where does my usual ranting come in, you may be wondering. Right about now. My issue is with the headline. This isn’t the first time that I’ve seen copywriters writing headlines that tout the exact opposite message of what’s actually contained in the article. Sure, you want to get readers but I don’t think that drawing people in with incorrect and misleading headlines is the way to do it. It does nothing for the credibility of your publication. Try writing a headline that actually corresponds with the information contained in the article.