What’s our mission at HBS? There’s a short story and a long story.
The Short Story
HealthyButSmart.com is a social enterprise committed to helping people make evidence based decisions on matters of health.
The team at HBS are happy when you avoid spending money on a non proven cure, a bogus supplement, or an ineffective treatment. We love it when you leave our website knowing as much about a particular health issue – or treatment for one – as the leading scientists studying the matter.
The Long Story
All around the world, people have trouble deciding what to believe on matters of health. Misinformation is rife and uninformed choices are common. And in many ways, the internet doesn’t help.
In a world where anyone can write anything they want, and everyone can shout equally loudly, how are we to make up our minds?
Mary over in that forum said this; But Damien on Facebook shared a post saying this; Wikipiedia on the other hand says that; But when I tried X, it didn’t work at all.
At Healthy But Smart, we believe that in the arena of health, not all opinions are created equal. In fact, any “opinion” at all, should be treated with extreme caution.
What’s so bad about opinions? Science.
In the realm of health, scientific research has a trove of accumulated knowledge that can help us; knowledge that’s based on evidence produced by (in many cases at least) rigorously conducted research in the face of which, opinions are at best unnecessary and at worst, dangerous.
We believe that the best health decisions are made when they’re based on the highest quality, most up to date scientific evidence.
But this brings us to the next problem…
“Science Is Too Complicated”
Trying to use scientific research to inform your health decisions is – even for the intelligent layperson – really difficult. You have to be able to read scientific research and both a) Understand what they’re actually saying and b) not die of boredom.
More than that, you have to be able to tell which scientific literature is legitimate and valuable, and which is biased, faulty, or meaningless.
Even among the higher quality informational health websites that try to focus on scientific research, so many read scientific literature with an uncritical eye, and end up using scientific studies to support claims or ideas that the studies themselves don’t validate.
At HBS our chief academic is a research scientist in the field of public health.
He can look at scientific research on an issue, and translate it’s findings into real understanding for every day people. He helps people ignore bad research. He draws attention to flaws in popular research, and shines light on high quality research. And in doing so, he helps people know what information they can rely on, and what’s, well… BS.
Our Business Model
HBS is a social enterprise because we realize that bridging the gap between scientific understanding and current consumer attitudes to health/health products (created by companies with enormous marketing budgets) isn’t necessarily profitable.
We’d love to provide the public service of clearing up misinformation and focus all our energies there, but because it’s so hard to generate revenue doing this, we know it’s not sustainable and will falter in the end.
For this reason, the rest of HBS is dedicated to providing in depth, research based product reviews on truly valuable items that enhance human health (like say blenders and juicers that help you eat more fruit and vegetables!).
That’s the long story concluded.
We dream of a time where, when your friend posts on Facebook about some supplement they’re taking, or some peculiar exercise regime they’re trying, you can send them to HBS for a definitive, unbiased, evidence based answer, helping them save money, save their time, save their Facebook wall, and protect their health.
We hope we’ll see you there.