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Biography: science, technology & medicine
Bad Science is a book that is set to debunk a number of myths floating around in the world of health and science.
Summary Of The Book
Bad Science deals with the bad science present in these modern times. Goldacre is simply disgusted and desires to educate people about the bad practices doing the rounds. He begins by targeting beauty salons and health spas that price detox footbaths for 30 dollars or more, whereas, people can own a detox machine for approximately 150 dollars.
He also explains that people often place their feet in water, and an electric charge is passed through, which in turn makes the water brown. They are then made to believe that they're detoxed, whereas, it's just the scientific process of electrolysis that brings about this effect. He makes use of a Barbie doll in a supposed attempt to detox her. He carries out his experiment using two nails, warm water, a car battery charger, and some salt. Goldacre advises the readers against trying out this experiment by themselves, due to the high voltage that may pass through the water.
Goldacre also has his take on the field of homeopathy, and notes that although it may work, it is not necessarily because of the ingredients. He also guides the readers into the importance of evidence-based medicine, teaching them to utilize a funnel plot when it comes to examining the results of trials, the Cochrane Collaboration, and the worth of meta-analysis.
He also tackles the claims made by Dr. Rath, whose belief is that taking huge doses of multivitamin supplements can slash the risk of developing AIDS in half and may prove a natural treatment option for cancer patients. Bad Science is definitely worth a read, as it keeps the readers amused with Goldacre's witty style, and makes them aware about common, yet serious myths.
About Ben Goldacre
Ben Goldacre is an author, physician, and academic.
Apart from this book, Goldacre has written Bad Pharma: How Drug Companies Mislead Doctors And Harm Patients and Bad Science: Quacks, Hacks, and Big Pharma Flacks.
Goldacre was born in the year 1974. He completed his Bachelor of Arts in Medicine from Magdalen College, Oxford. He then completed his MA from King's College London, in Philosophy. During his time at Oxford, he was responsible for editing the Oxford student magazine, Isis. He was licensed as a medical doctor in 2000, after he finished his degree in Clinical Medicine from University College London Medical School. Goldacre is also a part of the Royal College of Psychiatrists. He currently serves as the Wellcome research fellow at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine in Epidemiology. Goldacre has also been presented with the Freelance of 2006 Award at the Medical Journalism Awards. He has released a number of research articles, for which he has been awarded several times.