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Fad Diets Research and Lessons Learnt

I decided to choose the controversial topic (fad diets) due to the direct effect of such diets on the daily lives of thousands of Americans. As fad diets can be dangerous and cause dehydration, I believe people should understand their side effects and be aware of how such diets work. Furthermore, I was curious about the way fad diets work and whether their positive or negative outcomes can be supported by research. After eight weeks of researching, I am still interested in the subject as I have developed a solution to the problem, which would be beneficial to users and fans of such diets. I am interested in the psychological effects such diets have on individuals (e.g., do they improve self-esteem? Do they have a placebo effect? Why do people choose them despite knowing that they can have adverse side effects?).

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The main research strategies I have developed during the preparation of this assignment are the importance of collecting quantitative and qualitative data that can either support or refute your point, the necessity to check sources’ credibility, and the need to use a critical approach to all information collected to structure and analyze it correctly. Some scientists also recommend using case studies, and the research itself should not only be credible but also transferable (Cronin, 2014). A critical approach to information is necessary because there are many untrustworthy researchers related to the issue, which can sabotage the fidelity of the research.

The feedback of my peers was useful, as they showed me why some of my decisions were incorrect. For example, I revised my paper after one of my classmates told me it had too many sentences where the point I had made earlier was repeated. Others also asked me to define my solution to the problem more clearly so that other researchers can test it as well when working with fad diets. Although one of the reviewers asked me to split the second section for the sake of readability, I decided not to since it would disrupt the integrity of the description.

When I reviewed the work of my classmates, I learned how others used and invented different approaches to their research. It was useful for me to find out that some used their primary issue and examined it in detail to get the bigger picture, while others did the absolute opposite. Both deductive and inductive approaches were used, and while I used to believe they were chosen depending on the subject, today I think that any topic can be approached from both sides.

When I reviewed the work of my classmates, I understood how important metacognition was. When students think about the way they compose their essay, when they revise and review it, proofread it and check if it makes sense, it is visible. The more the student learns and educates him/herself, the more advanced his/her metacognition and writing become (Stewart, Seifert, & Rolheiser, 2015). Some classmates suggested reading and rereading/rewriting the essay as the main strategies, while others insisted that creating a draft is more useful than revisions. I collected evidence that both strategies helped students produce far more quality and interesting works compared to those students who never revised their papers. Thus, reviewing the works of my classmates, I realized that it is essential for students to understand how they write down their thoughts and what affects them because these factors eventually affect the integrity of the essay as well.

References

Cronin, C. (2014). Using case study research as a rigorous form of inquiry. Nurse Researcher (2014), 21(5), 19-27.

Stewart, G., Seifert, T. A., & Rolheiser, C. (2015). Anxiety and self-efficacy’s relationship with undergraduate students’ perceptions of the use of metacognitive writing strategies. Canadian Journal for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, 6(1), 4-17.

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