"In Science the authority embodied in the opinion of thousands is not worth a spark of reason in one man." - Galileo Galilei
Most science is bad science, based more on flawed logic, poor statistical practices, and "the opinion of thousands" rather than sound evidence. Though critical thinking is supposed to be the cornerstone of science, it is rarely exercised by its practitioners, the media which reports science to the public, or the public itself. For much of science, this is simply an annoying sociological artifact; evidence ultimately prevails over dogma, though it may take a century or two.
Unfortunately, the same criticisms apply to medical sciences, often quite literally resulting in matters of life and death. Bad science is rampant in public health recommendations and current medical practice. The organizations and individuals charged with preserving our health, while perhaps having good intentions, tend to exhibit behavior which is more self-interested than altruistic.
I hope to provide a "spark of reason". Unlike most of those pushing health-related "science", I don't ask for your unconditional trust. I will provide information which I believe to be supported by scientific evidence and logical thought, but it's up to you to assess validity of what I say, and how it applies to your own health. Modern society increasingly places blind faith in scientists, doctors, government, and the media. Our reward has been continued decline in the health of the population. About the best thing you can say for modern medicine is that it does manage to stave off early death, extending life in the face of the poor health caused by modern medicine in the first place. Ivan Illich nicely expresses this idea:
A world of optimal and widespread health is obviously a world of minimal and only occasional medical intervention. Healthy people are those who live in healthy homes on a healthy diet in an environment equally fit for birth, growth, work, healing, and dying; they are sustained by a culture that enhances the conscious acceptance of limits to population, of aging, of incomplete recovery and ever-imminent death. Healthy people need minimal bureaucratic interference to mate, give birth, share the human condition, and die. Man's consciously lived fragility, individuality, and relatedness make the experience of pain, of sickness, and of death an integral part of his life. The ability to cope with this trio autonomously is fundamental to his health. As he becomes dependent on the management of his intimacy, he renounces his autonomy and his health must decline. The true miracle of modern medicine is diabolical. It consists in making not only individuals but whole populations survive on inhumanly low levels of personal health. Medical nemesis is the negative feedback of a social organization that set out to improve and equalize the opportunity for each man to cope in autonomy and ended by destroying it.
In other words, optimal health depends on you taking responsibility for managing yourself. Only you place your own interests above all else, and by placing your health in the hands of other individuals and organizations, you are doomed to a fate which serves their best interests, not your own. To put it bluntly, illness is money: optimal health in the general population puts a lot of people out of business.
The path to optimal health lies not in "the opinion of thousands", but instead must be lit by your own "spark of reason".