Everything taken with a grain of salt
I think the best thing to take away from this article, and one that Taubes does a very good job of conveying, is that there is an information overflow. There are too many people conducting too many studies, which only vary slightly enough to cause opposite results. There might be two studies on what level of smoking causes lung cancer and depending on who is sampled out of the population or how the study is conducted; there might be two very different answers. This is exactly what Taubes was proving time and time again with his numerous examples of conflicting data. The problem, at least in my eyes, is that there is too much outside influences to really get consistent data. While one study alone might produce consistent and reliable data, simply changing where the study was done, who it involved or how it was conducted might produce drastically different results. This is exactly what is happening in the medical research field. We have too much data and statistics to be able to make clear judgments about the risks or benefits of partaking in certain actions or using different drugs. The scope of the research has become so large that we can no longer find the real answers buried underneath the constant inflow of information. What we are left with is nothing more than common sense. Everything you eat, drink, or do has the potential to benefit you, have no effect, or negatively hurt you. So be careful what you believe, because what heals you today might hurt you tomorrow.