A follow on from my previous post on correlation and causalities. A recent study looking the correlation between chocolate consumption and Nobel Prizes was published with the very intention to warn people of the danger of believing false causalities.
From Popular Science,
But Messerli himself calls the result “a complete nonsense correlation.” While there could be some kind of indirect correlation–chocolate is a luxury good after all, so one could assume that countries rich in chocolate are also rich in other things, like health care, education, and other factors that might influence a person’s chance of rising to Nobel status–there is no real established reason to believe that overall chocolate consumption (even dark chocolate, which has been shown in some studies to benefit the brain) generates Nobel laureates at an increased rate. Even the perceived link to wealth is incidental rather than causal. As a stand-alone finding, it is meaningless.