Friday, August 22, 2014

Questionable result in instant noodle

Recently, I found a tiny but interesting article in The Washington Post. It introduced some opinions of Korean people against a study suggesting the risk for health of instant ramen.

The Washington Post: Reactions in Asia to instant noodle study

It begins from an academic article published in The Journal of Nutrition. The researchers investigated over 10,000 Korean people in their diet patterns and examined their medical records. They found that people who had a traditional dietary pattern were less likely to be obese. In addition, they concluded that there was an association between high consumption of instant noodle and occurring of metabolic syndrome.

Instant noodle intake and dietary patterns are associated with distinct cardiometabolic risk factors in Korea.

In The Washington Post, several comments by Korean people were described. Their claims are various, from guiltiness of eating instant foods to emphasizing the merits of instant noodle.

Unfortunately, I could not read the full text of the original study because I am not a subscriber of the journal. Nonetheless, I am sure that this article is somehow questionable in the reliance. It seems that multidimensional analyses were adopted. It is uncertain based on what kind of concept the authors distinguished traditional diet pattern from meat and fast-food pattern. The reason that instant ramen is focused exclusively is unclear. I feel their conclusion is quite arbitrary.

Furthermore, I cannot understand the intention of The Washington Post to pay attention to this research. Korea is not the only country in which citizens are fond of eating instant noodle. What it the benefit of the readers from knowing this controversial result of this study? Not limited in instant noodle, it is obviously harmful to eat excessive amounts of a kind of food. Does the author of this article dislike a certain culture?

I like instant noodle. But I dare not to eat it everyday. That's all.

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