Project Description

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Launching Project REASONED – a comprehensive online database of patient case-reports focused on the health effects of various diets tracked over an extended period

Written by: TalkFEED Media 31 May 2015 Researcher: Simon Spoor

Research problem

Much of the current dogma in nutritional science is based solely on evidence derived from cross-sectional epidemiological studies. This type of research is, however, unsuited for establishing causal relationships between observations and outcomes and, as such, should not form the basis for drawing conclusions on the specific effects of particular diets on human health.

One solution for nutritional research would be to conduct long-term, prospective, randomised trials with strictly monitored diets and control groups. Conducting trials of this sort is, however, very technically difficult and prohibitively expensive in practice. Even if such obstacles could be overcome and a large scale controlled trial conducted, questions would remain as to the applicability of results in practice – i.e. to people in the “real word”. Finding creative ways to study the health benefits of particular eating habits for the population at large – including LCHF – thus remains a challenge.

Research proposal

To this end the Noakes Foundation is developing the project REASONED – a system that will, in effect, be a massive database of patient case-reports, focused on the health effects of diet on a broad range of individuals and tracked over an extended period of time.

To the best of our knowledge, REASONED will represent an entirely new approach to scientific research in the field of nutrition, combining the expansive scalability of an epidemiological study with the prospective nature of controlled clinical trials. This will potentially offer a research solution with the capacity to assess causality while remaining applicable to real-world situations.

Methodology

Using a carefully crafted web-interface, patients will provide the information needed to produce high-quality verified medical reports, detailing health outcomes and dietary habits, and then feeding this into a massive online database that will analyse the sum of these results to provide compelling answers to the questions asked.

REASONED is still in its early stages of development and The Noakes Foundation will soon begin the process of seeking volunteer participants from the public. Interested persons should watch this space.

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