Editorial Guidelines

We publish rigorously researched educational articles and honest reviews of health, diet and fitness products. 

Our goal is to produce accurate content that is free of bias. Because of this, we adhere to strict editorial guidelines that ensure our opinions are independent and not influenced by the companies we work with.

Editorial Process

Here are some quick facts about our editorial process

We prioritize transparency. All articles appear with the author’s byline so that you know who wrote the content. We never publish ghostwritten content, and we don’t allow authors to use pseudonyms.

We care about expertise. When hiring writers or accepting guest contributions, we carefully evaluate a person’s credentials in the health, nutrition and/or fitness space, and we only publish articles written by people with significant expertise or first-hand experience. 

We fact-check. All the content that appears on our website goes through a rigorous fact-checking process in which it is manually reviewed by at least one in-house editor prior to publication.

We never publish AI-generated content. Your health and wellness is too important to risk publishing incorrect information. For this reason, our writers are strictly prohibited from using AI tools (like ChatGPT) when creating content for us. We use AI-detection tools to help enforce this policy.

We update our content. We regularly review articles to ensure they are still accurate. This includes updating product reviews based on factors like new models, new features, and changes to ingredients. 

We encourage feedback and corrections. If you’re concerned that a piece of information on this website is incorrect or out of date, you can email the editorial team or contact Michael Kummer directly

Research Methodology 

When reviewing scientific research for evidence of a claim, we look for the following types of studies

  • Clinical trials (intervention studies).
  • Meta analysis (reviews of existing scientific research).
  • Placebo-controlled double-blind studies with significantly large enough cohorts.
  • Independent research that wasn’t funded by industry interest groups.

Some of the questions we ask ourselves while evaluating a study’s quality include:

  • Does it show results that can be consistently replicated by other researchers?
  • Does it rely on controlled variables and account for potentially confounding factors?
  • Are the methods, data and any potential conflicts of interest clearly stated, allowing others to evaluate the robustness of the research?
  • Does it have a large enough sample size to be statistically relevant?
  • Does it utilize placebos and randomization?
  • Does it offer clear and objective reporting?
  • Does it address its own limitations?

We also prefer studies that have been peer reviewed and published in a reputable journal.

Some health publications automatically deem a study to be of high quality simply because it appeared in a peer-reviewed source, whether or not any of the factors above have been considered.

However, it’s worth noting that researchers can pick who reviews their work, making the “peer reviewed” tag potentially less valuable than it used to be. Additionally, 500-600 papers are retracted each year after being published in a journal. 

As a result, we consider the factors above as well as a study’s review and publication history.

When evaluating a study, we watch out for the following red flags

Questionable funding sources. The results of research studies are often influenced by the entity funding the study. While the presence of industry funding doesn’t necessarily invalidate the underlying research — for example, an industry may choose to fund a study because they are confident that the result will be beneficial — funding bias can and does occur. Therefore, additional scrutiny is required when reviewing these types of studies. 

Conflicts of interest. We avoid studies conducted by researchers who have financial ties to third parties that may benefit from the study’s outcome.

Observational evidence. In the realm of health science, observational evidence is when researchers obtain information through questionnaires without intervening or changing conditions. For example, participants may self-report their food intake and the occurrence of certain health conditions as part of an observational study. Many nutrition studies rely on this approach because it’s difficult to control the food intake of a large number of participants over several years. Observational evidence may be able to establish correlations, but not causations.

Poor definitions. For example, a recent study from researchers at Harvard University claimed that consuming meat may increase the risk for Type-2 diabetes. But the authors’ definition of “meat” included sandwiches and lasagne, which contain many other substances (besides meat) that are known to increase the risk of that disease. 

Healthy user bias or confounding factors. For example, a study on how nutrition impacts someone’s health and well-being isn’t incredibly compelling if it doesn’t account for other lifestyle factors such as alcohol or tobacco use. Likewise, comparing those who follow a standard American diet (and classifying them as meat eaters) with vegans doesn’t make sense considering that vegans are statistically more likely to embrace complimentary healthy habits, such as avoiding tobacco and alcohol, exercising regularly, and practicing yoga.

Evidence that contradicts what we know about human evolution. For example, we know that early humans and our ancestors consumed predominantly the organs, fat and muscle meat of wild animals. If a study claims that consuming meat and saturated fats causes cancer and heart disease, that contradicts millions of years of human evolution. As a result, there are likely other (confounding) factors at play that have to be considered.

Cherry-picked evidence: Cherry-picking means focusing on evidence that supports a hypothesis, theory or claim, while ignoring evidence that might undermine or complicate that hypothesis, theory or claim.

One famous example of cherry-picking in the health realm includes Ancel Key’s “Seven countries study,” in which he suggested that the consumption of saturated fat causes heart disease based on observations from seven countries, while ignoring 14 countries that showed the exact opposite data.

Another is Dan Buettner’s research on “the Blue Zones,” in which he demonstrated how certain lifestyle choices (such as consuming more plants and less meat) leads to above-average life expectancies. The problem with this research is that the author ignored countries that also enjoy above-average life expectancy, but which consume high amounts of meat.

Review Methodology

Our reviews are based on first-hand testing and data collection, and we include photos and videos whenever possible. 

Our reviews are not subject to sponsor or partner approval. We do not promise positive coverage in exchange for access to products, and our editorial team has full control over the content that appears on this website.

Some of the questions we ask ourselves when reviewing products include

  • Does the product work as advertised and live up to the manufacturer’s marketing claims? 
  • Is there sufficient scientific evidence to support the use of the product? 
  • After testing the product, would we continue using it, even after the review is published? 
  • Would we recommend the product to our friends and family? 
  • Does the product deliver good value based on its cost and potential benefits? 

Based on our evaluation of these and other factors, we rate products and services on a scale of 1 to 5 stars. 

5 stars: The product strikes a perfect balance of cost and value, and delivers the advertised benefits. We see no major downsides or areas for improvement.

4 stars: There are minor problems or downsides to consider, though they do not undermine the product’s overall usefulness. Examples include a slightly shorter than expected battery life, or a powder that clumps too much when mixed with water.

3 stars: The product has at least one significant problem or downside that might cause a person to be dissatisfied with it. Examples include a strong smell, poor customer support, unpleasant taste, or a significantly shorter than advertised battery life. 

2 stars: The product has multiple downsides, such as failing to deliver any of its intended benefits, being substantially different than advertised, or containing multiple unhealthy ingredients. As a result, we do not recommend it.

1 star: The product may actively cause harm, such as a product that presents an acute safety risk or which contains ingredients known to be dangerous based on our understanding of human physiology. 

How We Make Money

We make money in four ways

  1. On-page advertisements. We get paid for allowing ads to be shown on the site. 
  2. Affiliate links. We may earn a commission if you click a link and then take an action, such as buying a product. (This never increases your cost.) 
  3. Discount codes. We may earn a commission if you use one of our discount codes when making a purchase on another website. 
  4. Sponsored posts. We very rarely accept sponsored posts. When we do, the fact that an article is sponsored content is clearly disclosed at the top of the page in question. 

You can learn more on our “how we make money” page. 

Comment Policy

Readers can submit comments on articles. Comments are held in moderation and are reviewed before appearing on the website. We may edit comments for style, formatting, grammar, punctuation and spelling. We do not allow comments that are intentionally hurtful or combative, or which target people based on their gender, sexual orientation, race, religion or ethnicity.

Additionally, we only approve comments that meaningfully contribute to the conversation about a topic.