MD, PhD, FMedSci, FRSB, FRCP, FRCPEd

What better to give to you for the holidays than your very own CHRISTMAS SURVIVAL KIT? This article by Eileen Scullion, Registered Homeopath LicISH ISHom with the Irish Society of Homeopaths explains. Sadly, its recommendations lack sections detailing the evidence for the claims made. Therefore, I have taken the liberty of adding my short scientific assessments (IN BOLD CAPITAL LETTERS):

START OF QUOTE

1. Over indulgence

Nux Vomica – For symptoms that arise after over indulgence and excess in food, alcohol, tobacco and coffee. The person suffers from headaches, indigestion, nausea and irritability and symptoms are worse in the morning or after eating.

Arsenicum – For symptoms of diarrhea, vomiting, cramps where you suspect food poisoning.

ZERO PLAUSIBILITY, NO EVIDENCE FOR EFFECTIVENESS.

2. Stress & Anxiety

Argentum Nitricum – Anxiety from worry that it won’t work out – What if the turkey burns? What if the electric goes out? What if the gifts don’t arrive on time? There is a great sense of urgency, hurriedness and worrying about everything with sleepless nights of tossing and turning.

ZERO PLAUSIBILITY, NO EVIDENCE FOR EFFECTIVENESS.

3. Sleep problems

Coffea – Sleeplessness from excitement. For the kids who just can’t sleep in anticipation of Santa’s arrival.

ZERO PLAUSIBILITY, NO EVIDENCE FOR EFFECTIVENESS.

4. Anger and resentment

Staphysagria – If you are feeling angry and resentful and are suffering in silence, or have difficulty in saying no but feel walked over, then this is an excellent remedy to help verbalise things or process your emotions.   Pent up emotions can also be accompanied with urinary tract infections where this remedy fits the symptoms.

ZERO PLAUSIBILITY, NO EVIDENCE FOR EFFECTIVENESS.

5. Colds

Aconite – If caught at the early stage, nip those colds in the bud that come on suddenly after exposure to cold dry winds or getting chilled.

ZERO PLAUSIBILITY, NO EVIDENCE FOR EFFECTIVENESS.

END OF QUOTE

As the ‘survival kit’ turns out to be pure speculation, fantasy and wishful thinking, let’s join into the seasonal fun and add some equally evidence-based homeopathic treatments of our own.

1. World peace

We all live in dangerous times, but the way to world peace could be guaranteed by this homeopathic remedy: Donald Trump C30. It is manufactured by exposing a glass of distilled water to a picture of the US president for about 30 minutes and then potentising the mother tincture 30 times in the time-tested way of homeopathy.

2. Fuzzy head

After all the booze and laziness over the holidays, one is bound to feel oddly fuzzy, incoherent and unfocussed. My homeopathic remedy for this complaint is HRH C200. You can make it yourself: take a vial of distilled water to a public library, find Prince Charles’ book ‘Harmony‘ (do not buy this book! it is expensive and not worth it), put the vial between its pages and shake vigorously. Subsequently return the book to its shelve and potentise your mother tincture 200 times.

3. Poverty

Yes, Christmas is expensive! If your bank account is now empty, don’t worry: homeopathy can help. Take your last fiver, cut a tiny bit off, grind it down in some sugar, put the mixture in distilled water, and your mother tincture is ready. You can then potentise it in the usual way; if you want to become a millionaire use the £ C30 potency; if you prefer to be a billionaire, I recommend the £ C200 dilution.

I must stop myself here, because I hope you, the reader of this post, will now chip in. If you are suffering from any symptom at all, please use your imagination and, based on the ‘like cures like’ principle, design your very own homeopathic cure.

Yes, that’s my Christmas challenge.

Have fun!

22 Responses to YOUR HOMEOPATHIC ‘CHRISTMAS SURVIVAL KIT’ (plus my DIY Christmas challenge)

  • I like the Viz recommendation
    ‘Recreate the experience of a visit to the homeopath by drinking a glass of tap water and setting fire to a £50 note.’

  • I was just thinking that, given the amount of Vodke drunk and then diluted and peed out, just drinking a glass of water ought to be hmoe[pathic vodka. It is in a very hight state of dilution, though, so likely to make out very drunk from one drop!

  • Let me get this right.
    I’m drinking raki, maybe beer a little later.
    Am I getting drunk or not?
    If I drink one raki and then another one, does the second cure the effects of the first?
    What day is it?

  • Don’t homeopaths always say that they give a highly personalized treatment after careful examination of each patient, taking care to see the “whole person” and not just his symptoms?

    So how can a serious practitioner of this profession give out general advice directed at anyone? Doesn’t this then constitute gross professional misconduct, or are these 2 words that in the mind of a homeopath simply do not fit into the same sentence?

  • Edzard

    “The person suffers from headaches, indigestion, nausea and irritability and symptoms are worse in the morning or after eating.”
    for homeopathic remedy, you wrote: ZERO PLAUSIBILITY, NO EVIDENCE FOR EFFECTIVENESS.

    I checked what an allopath would recommend for headache:
    https://www.drugs.com/condition/headache.html

    There is one BIG list. So I picked up the recommendations with maximum review:

    Fioricet

    “I’ve been getting terrible migraines for almost 20 years now. I currently take Topsmax to prevent them. When I was younger, I was prescribed Fioricet for the pain and never thought it worked very well. I switched to imitrex, which worked miracles and now take Maxalt Melt, the orally disintegrating tablets, which are also a -triptan medication. It is the only type of med to get rid of my migraines.” (20 years!)

    “I started off on Fiorinal…it has aspirin instead of Tylenol. I took that for about 20 yrs till the aspirin tore up my stomach. I WAS switched to Fioricet. …almost as good as the Fiorinal. Together it’s been OVER 40 yrs on this drug….absolutely fantastic…” (40 years)

    “I’ve had headaches for as long as I ca remember….I’ve taken excedrin, imitrex, tramadol…..nothing worked til my Ob gave me fioricet and it was a god send…..I’ve been on it for 40 yrs with no side effects…. (40 years!)

    “I’m taking Generic Fioricet for more than 10 years now. It started when I was in college” (10 years!)

    “I’ve taken this medicine for nearly 15 years for debilitating migraines. I am not addicted to Fioricet. I do not get rebound headaches. (15 years!)

    “I’ve been taking Fioricet for 40 years. I’ve had migraines for 53 years. I was 19 when it was first prescribed for me, before that, my life revolved around my headaches. Fioricet changed my life for the incredibly better. “ (40 years!)

    Naproxen
    “I’m 40 and have been a long life sufferer of migraines especially 3/4 days before my period. My migraines would last 4/5 days with the first day not able to function at all. I will be looking for a cool, dark and quite room to lay my body in and not to speak.. Since I was prescribed Naproxen 250 mg, I started taking 2 just as I start feeling a tingle of it coming. It doesn’t stop it all together, but it eases it. It made my life a lot better.” (life long!)

    “For the very first time EVER a medication worked for my migraine. My carrier would not cover the originally prescribed medication, so dr ordered naproxen and sumatriptan. I took it , not expecting much but I was wrong. My migraine felt like day 3 of a migraine. I could not believe it. I have had migraines for over 30 yrs and nothing has ever ever made any difference. I carry them both with me everywhere!” (30 years!)

    These medication are with evidence and the patients reportedly live with the problem for years together with no cure in sight. If this is what you claim as medicine with evidence, no doubt you cannot see evidence in homeopathic medicines.

    Stupid patients, stupid doctors and Edzard! The less said the better.

    • Right…everybody is stupid except for homeopaths…and you of course, Iqbal, right? And when someone takes the suitable homeopathic remedies, they will be forever cured of…headache! Your points, Iqbal, are very cool, it is good that no further comment is necessary!

      • James

        “…….And when someone takes the suitable homeopathic remedies, they will be forever cured of…headache!”

        I was traveling from Bombay to Delhi when the person seated next to me started taking interest in the book I was reading. It was “Lectures on homœopathic materia medica by James Tyler Kent”. He wanted to know details about Natrum Mur.
        He explained that he was from Delhi now posted at Bombay. When he was at Delhi, he used to get headaches once in a while and took aspirin to resolve it. About 5 years ago he was transferred to Bombay by his company. In about six months of his being in Bombay, the intensity and frequency of headaches increased to an extent that allopathic medication did not seem to help and on days he would miss office. He realized Bombay was not for him and went for a discussion with his manager for posting him back to Delhi. His manager practiced homeopathy as a hobby. (Edzard?) After listening to his problem and asking him a few questions he sent the office help for Natrum Mur 30 to be purchased from the local shop. 4 weeks of taking the medicine 3 times a day, rid him of his headache altogether. He continued in Bombay office.
        This is the outcome with homeopathy for which Edzard is still looking for evidence.

        • Did you forget Iqbal, that “Natrum Muriaticum” is Sodium Chloride i.e. common table salt. Or did you miss that class?
          A Nat. Mur. remedy you get when you open your water tap. The water molecules used to be in the sea once and the sea is full of Nat. Mur. as you hopefully learned in grade school, right? And then it gets super-diluted by evaporating into the clouds and then all shaken up in the rain and in the water pipes and by the time it hits your mouth it is super potentised 😉

          Did you know Iqbal, that in your tumbler of water, there is a fair chance some of the molecules of dihydrogen oxide once passed through Mohammed’s bladder… and Indira Ghandi’s, and Prince Charles’s, Hitler’s and perhaps even your friend President Trump 😀
          Just think if all the nano-quantum memories these water molecules picked up along the way and then are passed into your brain to make you go all funny in the head and believe in shaken water fairy tales?

          Now go and play with the homeopathy set you got for Christmas Iqbal, and try not to spill the Hepar Sulph. on the floor, it leaves such bad frequencies.

          • Björn Geir

            The water from your tap is same as succussed homeopathic remedy?

            https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23622259

            Try being a doctor, not a chemist. Or may be, you have the wrong label.

          • Oh my Iqbal, you are so clever. 😀
            Because someone claims to have seen something in shaken water using fancy apparatus (which has been repeatedly shown to be wrong every time it has been independently replicated under strict control) that does not mean that the fancy something seen with fancy apparatus has any relevance to any purported medicinal effects of shaken water, notwithstanding the presumed contents of “Nanosized solvent superstructures”
            For some reason I could not open the full size paper but I half suspect that experts in the technique of studying solvents using NMR, will not be surprised why this paper is published in a journal run by shaken-water fantasists and not in a serious scientific journal within said field.

            By the standards as homeopaths apply to studies of shaken water, we can find evidence for the existence of Santa Claus in this publication:
            https://www.amazon.com/Santa-Claus-Elves-B-C-CHASE-ebook/dp/B073X4QC4D/ref=pd_sim_351_1?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=DJGTSXP93T4B9PEY28BN

            Now, to give you the benefit of doubt dear Iqbal.
            Let us assume that Chikramane, Demangeat, Benvenista and their fellow water memory fantasists were right and nano- or quantum-something can be detected in the molecular structure of shaken water dilutions.
            Then it totally remains to be explain the following…

            a. In texts on studies of nanostructural phenomena in water, the experts (non-homeopathic) always state that any such structured variations in the relationship between the water molecules (that occur in the liquid state) are extremely short-lived. Their survival is measured in nanoseconds or even less time. How is that consistent with the theory of persistent memory of water that propagates and accumulates through the shake-dilution process?

            b. The nanosized solvent superstructures – or whatever. How do they survive the evaporation of the shaken water from the sugar beads? Current knowledge of physics and chemistry says they inevitably break up when evaporating. Is science wrong?

            c. How the very tiny nano-sized something-something that is left when almost all the water molecules have evaporated from the vial of sugar beads, can exert significant effects on the biology of the creature that ingests said sugar beads?

            Please provide references to material that gives credible answers to all three questions that may be consistent with the theory that Homeopathic shaken water produced remedies can have biological effects. If you do, then we can star taking you seriously.

          • @Björn Geir:

            b. The nanosized solvent superstructures – or whatever. How do they survive the evaporation of the shaken water from the sugar beads? Current knowledge of physics and chemistry says they inevitably break up when evaporating. Is science wrong?

            How would they even survive the water being dripped onto the sugar pills?

          • Fellow Iqbal wants his fantasies to be true so badly that he will defend them using all kinds of crap. I managed to read the full paper and it is a highly disturbing dissertation in wishful thinking. It summarizes a number of earlier experiments from the same author, where the results appear to be positive. The conclusion:

            Proton NMR relaxation managed to demonstrate physical modifications of the solvent throughout the low to ultramolecular range of dilution. The findings suggested the existence of nanosized (>=4-nm) superstructures which originate stereospecifically around the solute after an initial
            destructuring of the solvent, then develop more upon dilution and persist beyond 12c.

            I guess that by now these objects should already be visualizable through specialized microscopy (sounds like the new toy of homeopaths). And, of course…

            Conflict of interest:
            No conflicts of interest exist. Related studies were supported by grants from Laboratoires Homeopathiques de France, Strasbourg, France and Institut Boiron, Sainte-Foy-les-Lyon, France.

        • So, infinitely diluted salt, not even salt being the correct term, cured someone of headache. Your being ready to believe such stories means you are strongly biased in favor of homeopathy.

          A friend of mine suffering for months from swollen lymph nodes in the groin area, having pain after exertion, was (mis)lead to visit a homeopath by some (believer) family friends. The very important clue was that my friend had not even heard of this modality, and so was completely unbiased with respect to it. Naturally, after dozens of stupid questions, my friend was prescribed some form of evaporated water, I suspect it was arnica (but it really doesn’t matter). Guess what happened! As with all serious cases, nothing happened after a few weeks of use. Thankfully, after giving up, my friend visited proper doctors again. In the end, the condition resolved all by itself and the very important twist of luck was that the homeopathic bullshit intervention did not coincide with the self-resolution of the condition, so that the homeopaths could have claimed it to have been caused by the remedy, potentially causing my friend to believe in this bullshit.

          A mother of another friend of mine, a firm believer in homeopathy, “managed” her kidney condition using remedies, on the advice of the family homeopath of course (who, sadly, is also a proper doctor, i.e. anyone can fall for this crap), up to the point where severe renal colics had her sent for lithotripsy, due to increasingly accumulated renal calculi! Homeopathy, unfortunately, delayed proper treatment and even diagnosis in this case. Sadly, in this case, the mother’s firm belief in homeopathy did not let her see clearly, so she still believes in the crap after having “rationalized” using dozens of excuses and justifications to self-indulge in cognitive dissonance. There are, besides, hundreds of remedies, so you can always believe you were not administered the correct one.

          The relevant homeopaths in question will, of course, forever forget these stories, and only remember the positive twists of luck where resolution coincided with remedy administration. Just because you only keep the favorable stories in your mind, fellow Iqbal, this does not mean there are no hints to the contrary, or that homeopathy has any effect. When most confounding factors are accounted for, homeopathy, individualised or not, does not perform better than fantasy.

          After homeopathic intervention, and a dozen of lifestyle adjustments, headaches happened to disappear. You choose to believe it was homeopathy. In all certainty, it was the lifestyle changes.

  • For the challenge: I have a cure for debt and poverty.
    You take one of the collection letters from the bank. You put it in a photocopier and set the copy quality for lightest setting. Then you take that copy and bang it vigourously ten times against a leather bound copy of Karl Marx’s book Das Kapital. Any other firm surface will do of course, but using this book makes it look more impressive. (There is actually one exception. A copy of Edzard Ernst’s memoirs will actually ruin the potency) The banging is called potentizing. You repeat this procedure in all 30 times. By the 12th iteration all print will have diappeared but do not worry, the banging makes the memory of the paper stronger every time.
    The last copy looks like a blank sheet of paper but it is strong stuff and should be handled with care. Coffee will ruin the memory in the paper for example.
    Now fax this paper to the bank and ask that it is put in the managers in-box. By some nano-quantum memory effect that science is too immature to explain, the manager will write off all your depts and fill your account with enough money to buy the wife a new dress and a pair of shoes. You may have to repeat the faxing for several days. If the debt increases do not worry. That is called an economy crisis and is a sign that the remedy is having an effect.

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