Science Babe takes down Food Babe

Did not catch it, but that sounds interesting. Personally I’d just as soon add sugar or not where dictated by style, or seek out appropriate ingredients where I can. I’m kind of a shit baker when you get right down to it. I do a few things pretty damn well, but deviating from recipes or standard techniques isn’t my friend.

Otherwise I try to seek out appropriate ingredients instead of using non-traditional adaptations. I use actual Irish flour for my brown bread for example, but that requires a trip to a distant expat market or supply drops from visiting family. Though I still end up adding the sugar some times, most of the family seems to prefer the very slight sweetness to go along with the tart from the butter milk. And I get a much better, darker crust with nice crispy bits when I go that route. Spits in the face of tradition though. Its a quick bread so a lot of the more modern bakers tricks (like no kneed, long ferment etc) don’t really apply.

And Hawaiian sweet bread disgusts me, or at least the packaged stuff.

no worries, and i have a friend that makes a white/brown soda bread that is perfect. is it the perfect bread? no. perfect for fish or barley soup? give me moar!!

How do you decide who is a “bad person”? Why do you get to make that judgement? Am I a bad person, because I disagreed with you? Not trolling, BTW, asking a serious question here.


Why do I get to make that judgement? Everyone gets to make that judgement for themselves. I’m not asking everyone to agree or pile on, but I am within my rights to decide that for myself and act accordingly: free will is awesome.

How do I decide who is a bad person? In cases of science, their motivations and the truthfulness of what they say. For her, it’s: self interest at the expense of scientific fact and I think I’d need logarithms to explain how close to zero she is on the truthfulness measure. I (and most boingers) are thankfully educated enough to be able to ID her charlatanism, but many people are not. It is for those people that I’m happy to sully her reputation in any way possible. Make her a laughing stock and her impact will be diminished.

Are you a bad person, because you disagreed with me? Yes, a horrible evil one from the depths of hades. No, of course not… that would be a pretty low bar to entry and it would render large numbers of people as bad since, on some subjects, most people disagree with me. You participate in good faith and with reasoned, evidence-based information so you get a gold star for awesome humans.


You know, I didn’t judge you for this. I simply asked a question about morality.

While we like to think of ourselves as autonomous individuals, our actions have consequences, and we’re connected to the world around us and what we make a conscious decision to do can cause unintended consequences. The things we say, and do in this world have an impact on those around us. Not that I’m defending the “food babe”, because you’re right that she’s profiting off misinformation, and that kind of sucks. But why stoop to the level of trolling. Does it fix the disinformation she puts out into the world? Does it help anyone else understand the complexities of the world? Does it make the world a better place just to bring others down? That’s one reason why I like the Science Babe’s response, because she responded on the level of facts, pointing out how unhelpful the food babe is. She actually rose above.

I don’t think I’m any better than you, or her, or anyone else. I’m just as wrong and selfish as anyone else in this stupid world. But this world is full of shit and pain. Why contribute to it?


The things we say, and do in this world have an impact on those around us.

Yup. Whatever I can do to make her existence as unpleasant as possible, I’m there. You’ll notice I’ve never once raised ire with this fool until it made it to BB. I firmly believe in the concept that if you don’t like something you don’t have to look. When things I don’t like start to seep into places I do like, it makes me angry and I’ll start lashing out because it’s impossible to ignore. The lesson to the next idiot who wants to sell bunk is the whole point: profit from misinformation and the internet will fuck with you relentlessly.

Does it fix the disinformation she puts out into the world?

I know the information is bullshit, but for those who don’t it can’t hurt to discredit the source.

Does it help anyone else understand the complexities of the world?

I didn’t know that was my job, but I feel like I do that on BB on subjects that aren’t infuriating and ones on which I have some knowledge.

Does it make the world a better place just to bring others down?

For anyone who might have bought into her bullshit, but didn’t because people are saying she’s a bullshit artist: yes.

because she responded on the level of facts

Facts aren’t the problem. Foodbabe is wilfully misleading and hasn’t any educational background on the matter. Facts aren’t going to get rid of her influence because the people buying into her garbage clearly aren’t interested in facts. I am not formally educated in science, so I’ll leave it up to Science Babe and others with the requisite background to take her down on the facts and I’ll deal with the vitriolic mudslinging. I started this thread on the matter, with a podcast from Mark Crislip on foodbabe. I am all about the facts, but if they already comprehensively exist then why would/should I rehash them?

why stoop to the level of trolling.

Arguing against her talking points, when that has been done ad nauseam by others, is stooping to her level IMO. Arguing against things gives them a form of credibility that I’m not willing to give foodbabe. I don’t even like giving her fucking site pageviews! No one argues against the tinfoil hat people because that would be engaging with them on their level, and in some way validating their views. IMO if the subject is black and white (as this one is) the best thing to do is be as publicly unpleasant as possible to them. It has several benefits. It scares people who might otherwise publicly espouse similarly untruthful opinions. It makes her existence as terrible as possible, which I’ve got no problem with in the case of people selling bunk. It says to others that you’d better base your views and sales pitch on cogent fact and reality because people have access to real information now and if you think making shit up is a good idea, you will be the next Jenny McCarthy: a punchline.

I don’t think I’m any better than you, or her, or anyone else.

You are demonstrably a better person than she is.

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There are loads of completely objective, factual things to slam Food Babe about. Dropping down to the level of insulting her on a completely subjective level does absolutely nothing to convince anybody that you’re in the right, and could very easily turn away people who are on the fence about whether they believe her.

As someone who is smart enough to think critically about her statements, who would you believe more: someone taking the time to point out how absolutely wrong she is on many points, or someone talking about her physical appearance? If you weren’t smart enough to think critically about her statements, would there be any difference in the answer?

By engaging in unrelated putdowns rather than engaging her facts, you’re not avoiding giving her credibility - you’re doing the opposite.

It’s pretty rare that anyone makes Jenny McCarthy’s looks into a punchline (at least as a negative).


does absolutely nothing to convince anybody that you’re in the right

This isn’t my intention. I am slinging shit. How can I be any more clear than this?

could very easily turn away people who are on the fence about whether they believe her.

If my vitriol convinces someone to believe her nonsense, then that person is a fucking idiot. I don’t care about fucking idiots.

who would you believe more

I’m not attempting to make any argument, apart from: food “babe” is an idiot whose main selling point (as far as I can tell) is her looks. Looks that she, as someone who bestows upon herself the title of “babe”, obviously values considering she cakes on that shit at every opportunity to hide her age. Someone should tell her that less is more.

By engaging in unrelated putdowns rather than engaging her facts, you’re not avoiding giving her credibility - you’re doing the opposite.

See that comment you replied to? It makes pretty clear why I think facts aren’t relevant to this discussion any more.

It’s pretty rare that anyone makes Jenny McCarthy’s looks into a punchline (at least as a negative).

She doesn’t call herself “anti-vax babe” and if she did I’d attack her on that too. Foodbabe has two things going on that I’m happy to attack: profiting from anti-science scaremongering and egocentric image-driven celebrity (who else has the gall to call themselves “babe”?).

Don’t get banned. We like you.


Except it probably doesn’t because, as both you and I have pointed out in this thread, she’s a Class-A bullshitter and therefore will only use such comments to galvanize her sheepish Food Babe Army against any and all future critics. Read Science Babe’s polemic again— it’s not a takedown, it’s an alarm signal.

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Yes, I see that. Do you see the direct quote from your comment, which was the portion I was referencing and responding to?

I don’t think anyone’s unclear about that. Speaking just for myself, I’m just saying it’s not helpful and makes you look at least as bad as she does (which is quite an achievement…).

Fine, you don’t care about idiots. But the question is: do you really think slinging shit like that looks good to either side, whether they’re idiots or not?


That’s fine for very small scale growing, I’m talking about large scale organic farming though. And not only do large scale organic farms use more pesticides than GMO farms, they probably use more pesticides than regular non-organic farms too (though they’re not required to report on their usage by law like with the more tightly regulated regular farms, so it’s hard to say by how much, but given the limited types of pesticides they are allowed to use, and there relative ineffectiveness compared to more conventional pesticides, they certainly use more). Also, because the non-organic pesticides are more tightly controlled there has been a lot more research done into their effects on the environment, for all we know the organic pesticides could be really damaging.

If find Science Babe slightly less repulsive than Food Babe, but only slightly. And having someone suffering from celiac disease telling me they are an authority on what I should or shouldn’t eat seems a bit strange.[/quote]
Why would that be strange? What does having celiac disease have to do with anything?

Also, I don’t see how shes telling anyone what to do, aside from Hari, who’s shes just telling to shut up.

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I’m just saying it’s not helpful and makes you at least as bad as she does (which is quite an achievement…).

Am I profiting from lies and misinformation? Did you really think you could slip that false equivalence by me?

do you really think slinging shit like that looks good to either side

Since when did anyone sling shit to look good? Why is ‘looking good’ important? It’s certainly not to me.

Irrespective of what people say or claim, for a person to know that they’re very hated by a large numbers of people, the target of relentless vitriol and whose work is panned across mainstream media and science journalism is extremely stressful, mentally taxing and unpleasant. She’ll always have an audience and will probably always make reasonable money just from the sales of her books and site ad revenue. Merely contributing to the masses of people telling her she’s shit, especially on topics that most are too uncomfortable or ethical to mention, is more than enough for me since there’s already plenty of people pointing out why she’s factually wrong.

hahaha man, thanks. I’ll try. So far the only thing I did that was probably ban-worthy was drop the cbomb in her name in the comment above. Lately it’s just been silent deletions though - like my response to some jackass in yesterday’s thread about Nauru.

Anyway, I am checking out of this one now - I’ve got far too many comments on this thread. If anyone cares to continue the discussion of to troll or not to troll further I’d be happy via PM or separate thread, but I’m still not yet convinced that being civil and on-topic in discussions with charlatans is more beneficial than being a dick. All the civil, facts-based critiques of her so far haven’t changed anything, especially considering she’s personally attacking the people who have written them.

I’m sticking with the food babe on this one, and not with gawker.
Subway sandwich shops have a peculiar and strong smell that completely unnerves me. I don’t care what it is, I won’t eat there.

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What the following 2 studies show is that the risk is minimal to negligible in most cases. What I find important about them is that they both state that they were unable to determine definite safety or danger. To me, this is a big red flag. If you cannot show your food additive is safe, it should not be in food IMO. The FDA on the other hand seems to be operating under the “we haven’t proved it’s dangerous yet but we will ban it when we do” model that they’ve been accidentally killing us with for the past 100 odd years. I’m not convinced that’s a good model.

This really isn’t a red flag at all, like I said before it’s very hard to prove a negative. It is enough that you look very hard and can’t find any problems, which the studies you’ve linked seem to show.

The fact that the FDA have allowed this and the EU haven’t is probably more down to the EUs over-reliance on the opinions of ‘public health’ ideologues (who tend to have backgrounds in sociology, not science, medicine and statistics) in contrast to the actual opinions of the scientists whose studies they base their rulings on (see their ridiculous, and frankly public-health damaging, stance on e-cigarettes for a recent example of this).

Here is a study point more towards your concerns of food safety. The important part of this study is that the focus in on the chemical as used in foods and the effect thereof.

This study just shows the rate of production of semicarbazide from azodicarbonamide in different bread products, it doesn’t actually investigate any health impacts.

There was a study that did though, this one was done on rats, and while it did find the semicarbazide to be carcinogenic, the dosage relative to their body weight translated to humans would require the average person to ingest around 5,000kg of bread (minimum) to hit the same levels! Ridiculous. Another problem with drawing conclusions from this study is that the semicarbazide was administered orally, rather than via bread baked from flour containing azodicarbonamide.

Here we have a confirmed human case of an asthma attack brought on by the chemical confirmed by specific inhalation challenge This is in stark contrast to the studies used by the FDA claiming no such risk exists.

I’ve already covered this, and your additional links fall under the same category, occupational exposure at very high levels is irrelevant to exposure at very low levels as a food additive. Toxicity is meaningless without dosage, by your logic we should also ban dihydrogen monoxide.

These studies lead me to believe the jury is still out on azodicarbonamide and many of these authors seem to agree. Knowing there is a potential for problems, why would we choose to introduce such a chemical in to our food supply? It seems prudent to avoid it and I applaud the Food Babe for trying to educate us about what we eat - hyperbole and all.

As I’ve shown, these studies show nothing of the sort, they fail to find any negative health effects from the use of azodicarbonamide as a food additive. Vani Hari isn’t trying to educate anyone, she’s fleecing the ignorant.



Dear Sir or Madam,

Your reply does not include any citation supporting your position. Perhaps you might find a supporting article if you google “pesticide use organic versus gmo farming”, or the opposite, like this one.

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Isn’t everything delicious fried, pretty much?


In a world where doctors can’t agree if the RDA for sodium is dangerously high or dangerously low, I think slamming someone for telling us that there is a substance in our foods that has unknown long term health effects is a bit misdirected.

Short term small group studies are not enough to convince me it’s safe. We know that high single and/or short series doses are carcinogenic. What about low doses over a decade? No studies of that question seem to have been performed.

How many times have we been told something is safe only to later learn it is killing us? DDT anyone? Leaded gasoline perhaps? The FDA doesn’t have a very good track record. Suggest the FDA is relying on science and the EU on ideologues seems a bold claim considering how the FDA will fast track a drug relying on ‘science’ from the manufacturer only to recall them due to deaths and other profit destroying annoyances. The FDA as a scientific safety gatekeeper seems more fiction than fact. It seems the EU wants to err on the side of caution and the FDA wants to err on the side of profit. As a consumer, that looks like an easy choice. I’ll stick with the EU recommendations.

The argument seems to be - ‘Oh yeah, it’s a known carcinogenic but the doses we typically see are too low to cause cancer over a short period so we know it’s ok for you to eat. Don’t breath it though.’ I don’t think it’s a convincing one.


Yes, but it also gives people something to struggle against, and actually often has the effect of helping to justify what they are doing. If they take the stance that they are fighting for truth and justice against shadowy forces arrayed against them, then these sorts of attacks, paradoxically, only gives them more ammunition. They assume if they are being attacked, they must be doing something right, because “they” are now coming to get them. You become, not an individual who thinks they are wrong, but part of a shadowy conspiracy. Look at how the far right wing has been able to grow in Europe, despite the symbology of the right wing actually being banned in many European countries. When you troll and make personal attacks, you make, without meaning to, make her seem MORE legitimate in the eyes of those who like her anyway…