There’s a discussion online on this article about a group of homeopaths who wanted to go to West Africa and treat people sick with Ebola with homeopathy. For those of you who don’t know what homeopathy is, homeopathy basically boils down to magic. Homeopaths claim that water has “memory” and that you can dilute something beyond the point where any of the original solute is present but the water’s memory will somehow help you. Again, it’s magic.
One of the biggest arguments for homeopathy that you’ll encounter is that homeopathy is “natural” and “safe,” or that it performs just as good as placebo. Here’s a pro tip, folks. When something performs just as good as a placebo, it means that it’s a placebo, not a remedy, not a cure. Also, homeopathy is safe because it’s a placebo. Rarely does anyone overdose on nothing.
Anyway, some guy has shown up in the comments saying that we’re all likely pharma employees sent to discredit homeopathy. He also wrote something really bizarre, but something that is very telling about his science/medical knowledge:
Here’s the transcript:
“I understand that there are people commenting here with abusive and aggressive languages and words are paid employees of multinational drug manufacturing companies who are just here to destroy alternative systems of medicine. Alternative medicines like homeopathy are good for humanity and their welfare but scientifically unprofitable for them, because they can’t exploit it by identifying the content in it. So they are employing paid people to destroy, frighten and abuse others to stop them from commenting and bringing out their opinions reasonably. All over the world in Intensive Care Units (ICU’s) of hospitals, doctors are watching a wave in the monitor after connecting the body through electrodes to a computer and understanding whether the patient is alive or dead depending upon the presence and absence of the wave. This wave is the energy called vital force or prana or chi, which creates and maintains the living phenomena. Any scientific researches done without incorporating this energy level entity and its role in the physical functioning will not give a correct and complete conclusion to the research studies and any solution they give with out considering the energy and based on the incomplete conclusions of the study of the physical body alone using the material science will never give a correct and complete solution. Today every thing is commercialized and nobody is looking at the welfare of humanity. So let the people who make blind, ignorant criticisms and opposition to homeopathy and other alternative systems of medicine be enlightened and think and work for the welfare of humanity at large.”
That whole thing about a wave monitor is talking about an EKG, an electrocardiogram. An EKG is nothing more than a way to detect the electric potential of the heart as the heart’s pacemaker creates electric bursts to move the muscle fibers of the heart. There’s no magic in it. We’re not measuring any “vital force” with it. If you read a basic book on biology, especially the parts about membrane potentials, you’ll see that EKGs are just measuring how well electricity is traveling across the heart, electricity created by ions going through cell membranes.
Then he goes into a discussion about research studies done “with out (sic) considering the energy and based on the incomplete conclusions of the study of the physical body alone” and how they’re wrong for not taking into account the “vital force”. This is beyond uninformed, folks. This is living in an alternate reality, in a world where you can make up stuff and people will buy it from you… Where suckers are born every minute.
The truth is that homeopathy is not profitable to “big pharma” because “big pharma” has to prove that something works before they can slap a label on it and sell it. Bit “alt med” doesn’t need to prove a thing. All they have to do is slap the quack miranda warning on something, call it “natural” or “100% safe” (as if anything is) and sell it to the unsuspecting fools. They don’t have to conduct clinical trials, publish in peer-reviewed journals, or anything else that even looks like providing evidence. Any evidence they produce is in the way of subjective testimonies like, “I took homeopathy three days into my flu and it cleared up in three days!”
When I was working at the health department, one of my bosses asked me why I got so upset by quacks (and antivaxxers). I told him that these people are putting others in serious danger by pushing their quackery. When someone forgoes antibiotics for homeopathy and ends up dying from an infection, I have failed to do my job as a public health professional. I stand by that statement today, and I’ll stand by it for a very long time.
So I’ll continue to fight them… Fight them until I can’t.
René F. Najera, DrPH
I'm a Doctor of Public Health, having studied at the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health.
All opinions are my own and in no way represent anyone else or any of the organizations for which I work.
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