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(Time)   And the Nobel Prize in Statistics goes to these guys who have shown that countries that drink the most milk win the most Nobel Prizes   (newsfeed.time.com) divider line 15
    More: Obvious, Nobel Prize, dairy products, milk  
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1294 clicks; posted to Geek » on 17 Jan 2013 at 7:55 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-01-17 07:59:59 AM
The study's authors, Sarah Linthwaite and Geraint N. Fuller of the Gloucester Royal Hospital in the United Kingdom, set out to find a link between milk and Nobel Prizes after reading a report last year that associated consumption of chocolate with Nobel wins.

Newsflash: countries with disposable income can fund research! Read all about it!
 
2013-01-17 08:04:13 AM
imgs.xkcd.com
 
2013-01-17 09:12:14 AM
Possibly the stupidest article I've seen.

Could it be that the countries that drink a lot of milk tend to be developed Western countries, whereas the countries that don't drink a lot of milk tend to be either 3rd world or developing nations?
 
2013-01-17 09:56:48 AM
Countries with the most Americans also win the most Nobel prizes
 
2013-01-17 10:17:28 AM

RexTalionis: Possibly the stupidest article I've seen.

Could it be that the countries that drink a lot of milk tend to be developed Western countries, whereas the countries that don't drink a lot of milk tend to be either 3rd world or developing nations?


This is just another instance of the third variable problem.
 
2013-01-17 10:26:14 AM

ArkAngel: Countries with the most Americans also win the most Nobel prizes


Or countries who have the most people who have studied in America...
 
2013-01-17 10:37:39 AM
COW milk?
 
2013-01-17 10:51:12 AM
I love the milk culture here in Wisconsin. My family of four goes through five gallons a week. Sometimes six.
 
2013-01-17 11:00:26 AM

ArkAngel: Countries with the most Americans also win the most Nobel prizes


Correction, countries with the most Canadians working as part of their science teams win the most Nobel prizes. Canadians sneak in everywhere. There's even one in Oscar Wilde's tomb.

We can play this game as long as we like.

I dislike drinking milk. I can but I weaned myself of the bottle at nine months (insisting on a glass like everybody else, although mine had a sippy cover for a while) and I've never cared for the stuff much, although I love dairy foods such as butter, icecream, whipped cream, etc.

As pointed out, it seems highly unlikely that diet has much of a role on the production of Nobel scientists. Milk might influence childhood development, but the children are only getting the milk because they have all the advantages of middle class or upper class incomes in general.

China, ironically, produces more milk than any country in the world, although one quarter of the Chinese population are lactose-intolerant and most are still very poor.

Denmark, which has the lowest levels of lactose intolerance due to thousands of years of dairy-farming and natural selection against lactose intolerance, produces some great scientists, etc., but even so I wouldn't say they produce so many that milk consumption is a likely factor.

Switzerland eats enormous quantities of chocolate, about 500g a day per capita, IIRC, which is more than a pound. Diabetic chocolate is common everywhere so they never have to stop. But still, the number of geniuses and Nobel Prize Winners is not so disproportionate that you'd suspect chocolate.

Since the Ivory Coast produces most of the world's chocolate, they ought to be producing some Nobel Prize Winners of their own, as should the country which gave the world chocolate as a beverage and food. But no, they don't seem to be out of place in the rankings.

IRELAND is number one in chocolate consumption per capita, Switzerland is 4th, Denmark is 8th. All of these countries also consume a lot of dairy.

The thing is, the list of big chocolate consumers is "all the usual suspects" in the developed world, plus the USA, Canada, Australia and Italy. Chocolate consumption is a good indicator of high income, education, peace, wealth, intelligence, power, scientific and scholarly rank, and so forth. But it is unlikely to be a cause.

I smell a university PR department trying to grab headlines and filler space by saying cause rather than correlation. Of course, journalists, editors, scientists hewing to the "publish or be damned" rule, etc, are just as likely to do this. There's no branch of science that is more full of hype than nutrition. All of the world's beverages in particular, have been sold as "health miracles": tea, coffee, chocolate, soda, you name it, they slap a "health" label on it and sell it as health food, even though much of it is liquid candy spiked with caffeine, cocaine or something nearly as stimulating.
 
2013-01-17 11:56:46 AM
They also tend to be majority caucasi....oops.
 
2013-01-17 12:26:18 PM
Obviously, Nobel prize winners produce the most milk. Study it out.
 
2013-01-17 12:45:05 PM
img194.imageshack.us

The researcher behind the study.
 
2013-01-17 01:03:16 PM
My milkshake brings all the laureates to my yard.
 
2013-01-17 03:00:10 PM
Came for the "Causation without Correlation". Leaving happy.
 
2013-01-17 04:57:33 PM

brantgoose: I smell a university PR department trying to grab headlines and filler space by saying cause rather than correlation.


Perhaps we should nominate this study for the Ig® Nobel Prize.
 
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