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2017 News in Review: A User’s Guide to Cheating Death – Tim’s Best Quotes

A User's Guide to Cheating Death

Throughout December, take a trip down memory lane with us through a series of 2017 News in Review features. Here, we’ll look back at some of the best news articles that focused on the stars of your favourite VisionTV series.

This past year, the world premiere of six-part documentary series “A User’s Guide to Cheating Death” aired on VisionTV. At the forefront of each episode was health law professor, writer and debunker-extraordinaire, Tim Caulfield, navigating us through modern health trends and revealing the sometimes terrible truth behind them.

Caulfield also put celebrity influence, the power of social media and stretched-truth advertising under the microscope for a deep evaluation. With deep analysis, humour and expert opinion, audiences were presented with some pretty eye-opening theories and conclusions.

Ahead of each episode, Caulfield participated in a Q&A with VisionTV.ca. Here are some of his most memorable quotes taken from those interviews.

Cheating Death - Detox

On Celebrities Influencing People to Detox & Cleanse…

“I believe that without all the celebrity endorsement, detoxing and cleansing would not be such a huge cultural phenomenon. Without Beyonce, the Kardashians and, yep, Gwyneth, no one would be steaming or juicing or flushing their way to a healthy lifestyle. There is a lot of interesting research that demonstrates the influence – often unconscious and indirect – of popular culture in the area of health. So, like it or not, celebrity matters!” [Click here for the full Q&A]

Cheating Death - Slimming Down

On Comparing Yourself to Celebrities…

“Bottom line: celebrities are the worst people to compare ourselves to! Just don’t do it. They have won the genetic lottery. It is their job to look good. And almost every image is perfectly curated, including world-class photography, lighting and makeup. And, of course, the images are often photo shopped. The impulse to social compare might be hardwired. In today’s world, we are comparing ourselves to an illusion. These images don’t really exist. We need to remind ourselves of that often.” [Click here for the full Q&A]

Cheating Death - Genetics

On Society’s Obsession with Genetic Advantages & Disadvantages…

“My sense is that much of the fascination comes from how genetics has been represented in popular culture. There are movies about it (“Gattaca”). There are an increasing number of direct-to-consumer testing companies promising to provide useful, actionable information. And, for the most part, the media has bought into the enthusiams. I think we are all curious about where we come from and what might make us unique. But, there has been almost two decades of hype around genetics. It has been called a ‘revolution’ since the early 1990s, so I think this may have helped to generate a lot of public expectation regarding the value of genetic information.” [Click here for the full Q&A]

A User’s Guide to Cheating Death” Returns to VisionTV on January 1, 2018 (9pm ET/6pm PT) for a special encore presentation.

Cheating Death - Slimming Down

On Why People Turn to Fad Diets and Exercise Routines without Doing Proper Research…

“We would all like a simple answer! We would all like to believe that there is some strategy that would make sustained weight loss easier. Also, the public pressure to slim down is intense. And many of the trendy diets often have intuitive appeal. Perhaps it is some specific macronutrient or eating pattern that is the problem? But can you name a fad diet, even one, that, over the long term, has proved to work?” [Click here for the full Q&A]

Cheating Death - Slimming Down

On What to Eat and What Not to Eat…

“Eating real food and avoiding processed junk does matter. There is lots of evidence to support this idea. Also, there are some chemicals – both naturally occurring and human made, by the way – that are harmful to our health. But these kinds of health truisms are stretched beyond recognition by many of those obsessed with natural [products]. In the show, we wanted to get a sense of how that happens. And are there a few core ideas that make sense?” [Click here for the full Q&A]

Cheating Death - Scienceploitation

On Why People Continue to Fall for Bad Science…

“All good science can’t be rushed (which is something I have to remind myself of often!) Indeed, there is growing concern that the push to publish often and to translate research to the public might be having an adverse impact on the quality of science, particularly in the area of health. And I think that the scientific community often – consciously or unconsciously – used hype terminology to talk about their work. For example, they may suggest that basic research will be in the clinic in just five or 10 years, which almost never happens. This kind of science hype can result in unrealistic public expectations and can be exploited by the providers seeking to market unproven therapies. I want to stress that science hype, a topic we study at my institute, is a complex phenomenon involving many players, the science community, research institutions, the media and industry. No one entity is to blame.” [Click here for the full Q&A]

-Adam Grant

A User's Guide to Cheating Death - Timothy Caulfield in Coffin

A User’s Guide to Cheating Death” Returns to VisionTV on January 1, 2018 (9pm ET/6pm PT) for a special encore presentation.

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