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Truth shopping

Marc Legare writes about conducting research on the internet
typing on laptop getty images
Typing on laptop (Getty Images)

The internet allows you to shop for just about anything from cars to finding a wife or husband. That can be a dangerous thing, because you can also shop for truth.

I like a glass of wine from time to time, yet I am concerned about its health benefits. So, I do as so many of us do in our modern internet age, I go looking on the web to find out what the experts and "the science" has to say about wine and its consumption.

Not as simple as it sounds. Like so many things today, there is conflicting data, expert disagreement, and a wide range of studies with differing results. If you start going down that path, or almost any rabbit hole looking for answers to a particular question, you’ll find you get more information than you bargained for. 

Many studies show that moderate wine consumption is good for you. It contains antioxidants, is good for your heart and has several other benefits. Other studies suggest that this is not the case. 

Using the wine consumption example, most studies use the term "moderate" consumption. OK, what is moderate? Oh…oh! I should not have asked that question. 

One study states that one glass a day for women and two glasses per day for men is moderate. Another claims two glasses for women and men. Yet another expert says up to 10 units of alcohol a day will not harm you (10 units is about five glasses). And still others say alcohol is unhealthy, period. You get the point.

So what do we do with such vast and differing information? There is only one thing to do... truth shop! And being human, with a variety of differing facts and opinions at our disposal, we choose the ones that we want to be true, not necessarily the ones that may actually be true.

In other words, the internet is fertile ground and a tool for us to use in order to garner a truth that supports what we want that truth to be. 

Of course, I do not truth shop myself; I just witness others do so.

But lucky for me, as I write this article I pour my second (and final) glass of wine this evening. After all, studies conclusively show that a glass or two of wine a day is good for you.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the position of this publication.