Imagine reading this sentence:
The study's results are considered statistically unlikely to be due to chance, but were near the mathematical limit for that distinction.
A convoluted way to say "statistically significant."
More important, when data is crunched and the finding shows significance, there is no "near" distinction - either it's statistically significant or it's not, there is no grey.
Is the above a made up sentence to prep readers before I jump into a piece about statisitics and their interpretation?
Nope, it's from a real article I read about a study that found greater weight loss in overweight or obese women who ate eggs for breakfast compared with women, eating the same calories but eating bagels for breakfast instead.
In the study, 160 overweight or obese women were broken into four groups, including two that had diets about 1,000 calories lower than typical. One special diet group had two eggs as part of breakfast, the other had a bagel instead, though they were the same in calories. The average woman on the egg diet lost six pounds, while women on the bagel diet lost 3.2 pounds, a 65 percent difference. Researchers also reported that waist size dropped 83 percent faster for women on the egg diet. They said that there were not significant changes in cholesterol or triglcerides between the two groups.
The author really should consider a course on brevity and to-the-pointness.
A study, that grouped 160 overwight and obese women into four groups, each consuming 1000-calories less than their baseline diet, found the group allowed eggs for breakfast lost 65% more weight (6-pounds) than the group allowed bagels (3.2-pounds). The researchers also reported no significant differences in cholesterol or triglycerides between groups.
That would be too easy, huh?
But then again, this is from someone who presents statistically significant findings as "unlikely to be due to chance, but were near the mathematical limit for that distinction."
When the data is actually published, I'll see what it really says and report back at that time!