Industry-Funded Studies Say Drink Up (Their Stuff)

Studies of the health benefits of beverages are four to eight times more likely to support the studied drink if industry fully paid for the research than if it didn't, according to a newly-published article in the science journal PLoS Medicine. The study reviewed 206 journal articles that drew conclusions about the health effects of a beverage. About half of those revealed their funding sources. "We found evidence that's strongly suggestive of bias," said obesity specialist Dr. David Ludwig of Children's Hospital Boston. American Beverage Association president Susan Neely slammed the study, saying, "This is yet another attack on industry by activists who demonstrate their own biases in their review by...not judging the research on its merits." The study looked at health claims for beverages including milk, juice and soda, among others. A consumer advocacy group, the Center for Science in the Public Interest, also participated in the study.