After studying Module 4: Lecture Materials & Resources, discuss the following:
You want to conduct a study to determine whether fruit consumption leads to reduce weight. Why would an experiment be better than an observational study?
- Your initial post should be at least 200 words/numbers or a combination of both. Your initial post is worth 60 points.
- Additional readings must be cited, and formatted in the current APA style.
Introduction: Obesity is a significant public health concern, affecting millions of people worldwide. Fruit consumption is widely advocated as a healthy dietary behavior for individuals who want to lose weight or maintain a healthy weight. However, determining the effectiveness of fruit consumption in reducing weight requires a well-designed study. In this essay, I will discuss why an experiment would be better than an observational study in determining whether fruit consumption leads to reduced weight.
Observational study vs. Experiment: Observational studies and experiments are two methods of scientific investigation. In observational studies, researchers observe the relationship between two variables without manipulating any of them. In contrast, experiments involve manipulating one variable and observing the effects on another variable while controlling for potential confounding factors. Observational studies can provide valuable information on the relationship between variables, but they cannot establish causality. In contrast, experiments can establish causality because they manipulate one variable and observe the effects on another.
Why experiment is better: In the case of determining whether fruit consumption leads to reduced weight, an experiment would be better than an observational study. There are several reasons for this. Firstly, an experiment would allow researchers to control for potential confounding variables. For example, researchers could ensure that all participants consume the same amount of calories each day and engage in the same amount of physical activity. By controlling for these factors, researchers could ensure that any differences in weight loss between the fruit consumption group and the control group are due to fruit consumption alone.
Secondly, an experiment would allow researchers to randomize participants into the fruit consumption group and the control group. Randomization ensures that the two groups are similar at the outset of the study, which reduces the risk of bias. In contrast, observational studies often suffer from selection bias, which occurs when the participants in one group are systematically different from the participants in the other group.
Finally, an experiment would allow researchers to measure the dose-response relationship between fruit consumption and weight loss. In other words, researchers could determine whether there is a linear relationship between the amount of fruit consumed and the amount of weight loss. Observational studies cannot establish dose-response relationships because they do not manipulate the variables of interest.
Conclusion: In conclusion, an experiment would be better than an observational study in determining whether fruit consumption leads to reduced weight. Experiments allow researchers to control for potential confounding variables, randomize participants, and establish dose-response relationships. While observational studies can provide valuable information on the relationship between variables, they cannot establish causality. Therefore, an experiment would be the preferred method for investigating the relationship between fruit consumption and weight loss.