Hoax about Chocolate as Diet Aid
Just when you thought the chocolate lovers diet was real… poof. It turns out the claim was just a hoax by a journalist. Turns out science journalist Johannes Bohannon wanted to see just how gullible the online press was with pseudo scientific studies. He got a team of researchers to help him do a fake study to prove that eating chocolate helps you lose weight. Because, really, who wouldn’t want this to be true.
They did the study. Published the findings in a pay-for-publication scientific journal and then did an online PR campaign to get the findings circulated. The press release went out in late March and the study’s findings went viral by April.
Bohannon didn’t let the hoax go on too long. On May 25, 2015 he announced that the study was bogus. The paper has been removed from the journal website after the hoax was revealed, but Bohannon has posted it so you can read it in its entirety.
I guess if the news about chocolate looks too good to be true, it is.