Yes, I know what you will say: homeopathic remedies are all nothing but diluted water. But the ‘diluted water’ remedies that this post is about are different. Even their starting material – homeopaths call it mother tincture – is nothing but water. And what is more, homeopaths are so fond of these ‘diluted water’ remedies that they have more than one of it! One might think that water is water, especially, if you dilute it endlessly with pure distilled water. This may be true for most of us, but not for homeopaths – FAR FROM IT!

Here I present you those commercially available ‘diluted water’ remedies that I have found (I am fairly sure there are more, if you search more thoroughly than I did):

I don’t know about you, but I was impressed to find this big a variety of water – better than in a three-star restaurant! My favourite is not the water from my place of birth, Wiesbaden, but LORDES WATER. I am sure you will ask me what all these waters are used for. Lourdes water is the only water remedy for which we can tell with any degree of certainty:

  • The original Lourdes water is supposed to heal patients of all ills.
  • Now, please apply the ‘like cures like’ hypothesis of homeopathy to this fact.
  • The result is clear: homeopathic Lourdes water is supposed to give you all diseases known to mankind.

And then some nutters try to tell you that homeopathy is not dangerous!!! 

93 Responses to Heedless homeopathy. Part 3: Diluted water remedies

  • The mind boggleth. Are these prepared as remedies in the usual way, by a couple of drops dropped into a little bottle of sugar pillules?

  • I bought and consumed in household use, a large bottle of Zamzam spring water while working in Saudi Arabia in 2015. I can’t say that in material doses it caused any symptoms, so I don’t know what similar symptoms it would be intended to cure in homeopathic potency.

  • Ganga water

    “Pollution of the Ganges (or Ganga), the largest river in India, poses significant threats to human health and the larger environment.[1] Severely polluted with human waste and industrial contaminants, the river provides water to about 40% of India’s population across 11 states,[2] serving an estimated population of 500 million people which is more than any other river in the world.”

    We potentiate the water of one of the dirtiest rivers on earth, which contains countless pollutants, contamitants and deadly bacteria. What do the homeopaths suggest to us?

  • Even if the kind of Platonic ‘essentialist chemistry’ was real, it still presumes an entire non-existent physiology upon which to work and cure illnesses (which themselves also lack an entire alternative biochemistry).

  • So all of these “water” remedies are the same? Would you drink all of these different waters?

  • Another wonderfully irrelevant post. You are outdoing yourself. Go ahead and do a homeopathic proving of some of these water remedies and you can tell us if they have the same effects.

    • This is not how it works. You make an assertion. You must prove that your assertion is correct.

      Go ahead, Roger. Set up your test series about the “waters” and publish your papers in peer-reviewed reputable journals.

      • I would rather that You meet homeopathy on its own terms. We have been giving you a way to test homeopathy for over 200 years and y’all refuse to get off your paradigms and do it. Do a homeopathic proving. There are provings that have been published for 50 different water remedies.

        • Do you really believe, Roger, that different waters, homeopathically potentised, are effective in altering the process of any health condition, to an extent greater than placebo?

    • thanks – but instead of paying me compliments, you could answer the 2 questions I recently asked you.

    • @Roger

      I don’t believe Ernst has ever participated, or will ever participate, in a homeopathic proving. Otherwise, he would have bkigged about his *personal*l experience on this blog long ago. The term paper tiger comes to mind…..

  • @ bjorngeir

    “homeopathic provings are experiments where homeopaths give a (often highly diluted/potentised) substance to healthy volunteers and ask them to monitor all sensations that follow. These symptoms are then recorded and eventually form the ‘drug picture’ of a homeopathic remedy. When prescribing a remedy, homeopaths essentially try to match the patient’s symptoms with the drug picture. This is why provings and drug pictures are so very important to classical homeopaths.”


    I do not believe Professor Ernst has ever personally participated in a homeopathic proving. Otherwise, he would have mentioned it in the cited blog entry above.

    • what you believe is irrelevant

    • This is an “ok” definition of a homeopathic proving. A single potentized substance is chosen for a proving; not a mixture of various remedies. Almost all provings now are done with highly diluted/potentized substances/remedies to avoid any possible toxicity. The dose is given repeatedly over several days until new symptoms (mental, emotional or physical) are experienced by the prover. New symptoms can be identified because a careful health history of the prover is taken in advance of the proving process by a supervisor. The proving lasts until the last new symptoms wear off and the prover returns to their former state of health. The prover checks in with the supervisor on a regular basis to ensure that a complete case history is taken before and throughout the proving.

      So when the Less-Than-Amazing Randi and his cohort down a single bottle of Calme Forte (which is a mix of various low potency remedies) as a stunt to “prove” homeopathy doesnt work, this is not a proving.

      I wish Edzard would give us the details of the proving that he claims he participated in.

    • ‘Proving’ is utter madness.

      The first an foremost reason is that IT DOES NOT INVOLVE PATIENTS OR DISEASES AT ALL.
      The second reason is that provings involve only a dozen or so people. This tiny group size makes any results meaningless from the onset.
      The third reason is that participants in most cases know what it is they’re ‘proving’, so they know what to expect – and lo and behold: they experience ‘symptoms’ that match their expectations. Duh.
      The fourth reason is that proper scientific experiments with provings have failed invariably, already from 1835 onwards.

      Only idiots believe that this ritual provides any useful information whatsoever.

      (And oh, if real pharmaceutical companies were to ‘test’ their products in this way, they would be forcibly shut down immediately – and rightly so.)

      So please stop insulting our intelligence by going on about how Dr. Ernst (or other people) should do a proving in order to (haha) ‘prove’ that it consistently does something special. It doesn’t, and one person’s experience is useless anyway.

      Come up with real peer-reviewed(*) scientific results or shut up and go away. If you think I’m being rude: yes, I am. I’m getting increasingly fed up with arrogant fools and quacks who spread nonsense with an attitude as if they know better than real scientists and real doctors.

      *: And by peers I don’t mean homeopaths, but people who actually have enough brains not to fool themselves – because fooling yourself and others is what homeopathy is all about.

      • 1) Provings & homeopathy dont have to involve patients or disease. Conventional medicine tortures and leads-on sick people. Not homeopathy. You have a fundamental misunderstanding of it.
        2) Provings involve as many people as are available to do the proving. Even the proving of a single person is valuable and meaningful and provides indications of the medicine’s usefulness. The more people involved the more you learn about the medicine. Just as conventional medicine learns more and more about all the damage they are doing to patients by all the side effect reports (and how to mitigate them), homeopathy learns more and more about all the benefits of their medicine from having more provers voluntarily involved in a proving.
        3) I dont think you would know what happens in Most cases of provings. What is your _experience_ in the area? The recommended guidelines for a proving is that the provers Not know what they are proving.

        Only idiots discount the proving process out of ignorance. Even conventional medicine values the information from all the people they have harmed with their drugs. Pharmaceutical companies DO test their drugs this way, only they get paid to do it by all the unsuspecting victims of their poorly tested drugs.

        I want y’all to do a proving so that from your own direct experience you can _prove_ to yourself that extremely dilute homeopathic remedies have a powerful effect. Get your head out of your arse.

        Shut up about your vaunted scientific results:

        “The case against science is straightforward: much of the scientific literature, perhaps half, may simply be untrue. Afflicted by studies with small sample sizes, tiny effects, invalid exploratory analyses, and flagrant conflicts of interest, together with an obsession for pursuing fashionable trends of dubious importance, science has taken a turn towards darkness. As one participant put it, ‘poor methods get results’.”

        Dr. Richard Horton, editor-in-chief
Lancet, Apr 11, 2015 editorial

        • That should read “provings in homeopathy”, or “homeopathic provings”

        • “I want y’all to do a proving so that from your own direct experience you can _prove_ to yourself that extremely dilute homeopathic remedies have a powerful effect. Get your head out of your arse.”

          It did not work when I did provings.
          So, it might be you who has his head in an awkward place.

    • Well, I kind of knew you didn’t know. Funny that you should need to cite a renowned expert in the field rather than tell us your own knowledge. I think you are not a real homeopath, just a fangirl trying to impress, right?

      • @Bjorn

        Ernst is not an independently licensed practicing homeopath. Neither am I. By today’s standards, Ernst is not a ‘renowned expert’ in any field of medicine. He is skeptic with a blog.

        • You don’t have to be a homeopath to know that homeopathy and its rituals are merely a belief system, a sort of religion if you will. In fact, it’s the other way round: as people invest more time, money and (emotional) energy in their belief in homeopathy, it becomes harder for them to abandon it, and look at it with a scientific, more realistic mindset.

          This works just like any other religion, where e.g. converts are taught to see their god in everything around them: in the end they honestly can’t imagine that there are people who fail to see this ‘ubiquitous proof’ of their god’s existence. Thus the unbelievers are deemed blind and deaf, instead of realistic. And oh, just as with homeopathy, evidence contrary to the belief system, no matter how abundant, is simply ignored or handwaved away.

        • What are your credentials Sandra?
          What gives you the right to vigourously promote a certain “system of medicine” that can be easily shown to be completely out of tune with science and established principles of nature? You keep up an aggressive social media presence to drive this agenda, where you even systematically block those (like me) who question your claims. Futhermore, you aggressively question those on this blog that disagree with you, including professor Ernst, who is a medical doctor also educated in homeopathy and has an unpralleled academic career in scientifically studying so called alternative medicine. I do not think there is anyone who has published more on the subject than he, so for all practical purposes he is a recognised expert in the field. If you disagre, you have not only to support your opinion with evidence but also why you are in a position to offer such an opinion. What says you are an expert in the field?

          Also, what do you mean by “licensed” homeopath?

          • @Bjorn

            At least it’s not the “family” homeopath she normally bangs on about.

          • Thank you Björn Geir for saying just what I was thinking while driving home today, and for saying it better than I could.

            Sandra you do no service at all to homeopathy when you write in such an ignorant and impolite manner.

  • @Bjorn How much time did you spend composing that pompous jibberish? It was a wasted effort.

    Anyone visiting Ernst’s blog can see a short bio about the author of a comment by clicking on the image of the author. Try it. You’ll see the words: “View Complete Profeile.” Yours is blank. Mine is not.

    Edzard on Friday 04 September 2020 at 16:25

    you are adorable, Sandra … to think that you can ruffle anything … just adorable!

    • If this is your reply, Sandra, then I take it that this part is what constitutes your credentials:

      …transcribed husband’s PhD thesis in pharmaceutical chemistry.


      If transcribing text is your road to education, try transcribing the following words, attributed to Abraham Lincoln:

      Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak and to remove all doubt

      • “If transcribing text is your road to education…”

        A good friend of mine has a disability and in the 1970s worked from home typing student dissertations and theses, transcribing from handwritten copy. He learned a little about the Swedish social security system, Arianism and the Donatist Controversy in the 4th Century, and many other things. But he isn’t an expert in any of them……

    • How much time did you spend composing that pompous jibberish?

      Sandra. The spelling is “gibberish”. I’d have thought that as a transcriptionist you’d at least be able to spell.

      You also appear to be unclear on the meaning of the word. Let’s look it up, shall we?

      “Definition of gibberish

      : unintelligible or meaningless language:”

      Well. How strange. I find Björn’s post to be completely intelligible and the meaning is easily understood. How strange.

      Merriam Webster also contains another definition:

      ” : a technical or esoteric (see esoteric sense 1) language ‘The doctors spoke to one another in their medical gibberish that I was unable to follow.’ ”

      This is probably closer to what you meant. Perhaps it’s the big complicated words in it which are are confusing you. Let us know which ones you don’t understand, Sandra, and we’ll help you look them up since you have already demonstrated your inability to use a dictionary.

  • I had seen that aphorism attributed to Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens) but I have found this web page and enjoyed it, because it is a nice example of tracking down and examining/evaluating evidence!

  • Looking forward to Edzard doing a piece about light as homeopathic remedies:

    (1) There are actual products on the market, see here: Please note: Gudjons is considered a high quality manufacturer of homeopathics in Germany, often featured on TV, selling Luna C1000 – which is moonlight diluted 1000 times at the ratio of 1 by 100. Sells at about € 30 for 1.5 grams, that is € 20,000 per kilo.

    (2) lists 29 different remedies of “light”, like light of Jupiter, of rainbow, ligh of Black hole, light of total eclipse of the sun etc. 16 of them actually come with homeopathic provings. Link (scroll down to “Lux …”):

  • everyone is right based on the minds they have. In the end homeopathy is cheaper than herbs and vitamins, and there is no coming down from homeopathy, like there is with other substances.

    • homeopathy is cheaper than herbs and vitamins BECAUSE ITS REMEDIES CONTAIN NOTHING
      there is no coming down from homeopathy BECAUSE IT HAS NO EFFECT WHATSOEVER

    • @marc flayton

      everyone is right based on the minds they have.

      Are you trying to tell us that everyone can just make up their own facts and then claim to be right? I beg to differ.

      In the end homeopathy is cheaper than herbs and vitamins,

      No, not really. Buying something that doesn’t work at all is by definition always more expensive than any alternatives that at least have a modicum of proven usefulness. When you compare the price of OTC products, then homeopathic products cost about the same as vitamins and supplements that people are told to use daily – somewhere between 5 and 20 cents per day. Which doesn’t seem like much, but it’s still a couple of dozen euros per year that are completely wasted.
      If you look beyond OTC products, homeopathy is one of the most expensive health frauds there are, with homeopaths easily charging €150 or more for a first consultation, and up to €100 for any subsequent visits. The only therapeutic effect of this is the emphatic attention of the homeopath for their victim client’s life story and complaints.

      there is no coming down from homeopathy, like there is with other substances.

      This is because homoeopathy does not actually do anything. Apart from this, most OTC medicines also have no coming down.

      • You sound like a nice person, but to surmise right and wrong is not my aim. It’s truth the way I know it, so if you had fun trying to reject everything I wrote I hope you enjoyed yourself. Stay warm.

        • You sound like a loon

        • @ marc flayton

          “everyone is right based on the minds they have”

          “It’s truth the way I know it”

          Can I please respectfully ask, Mr Flayton, In the mind you have and the way you know truth, is it true that a laboratory can tell the difference between bottles of Nat mur 30C pillules and bottles of Rhus Tox 30C pillules with the labels off?

          In the mind I have and the way I know truth, that isn’t possible. And I think my mind and way are correct, because I’ve read quite widely on homeopathy but have seen no evidence of anyone being able to make such an identification.

          • For some Jesus was a miracle worker for others he was their father(Merry day before Christmas). All I can tell you if they had the right instrumentation, they would detect it.

          • And do you know of anyone with the right instrumentation?

          • No but it’s not a lie to say, the future holds many miracles.

          • So as things currently stand, your belief is the same as mine – that no-one can correctly identify different 30C pills with the labels off?

          • In one sense your right, as a friend reminded me only perfection could recognize perfection, not meaning you have to be an artist to recognize art, but it helps.

          • I will try not to tell a lie you are correct.

          • “as a friend reminded me only perfection could recognize perfection”

            A tautology is a statement that, by virtue of logic and nothing more, is true, but in such a way that it contains no useful information: “The red bicycle is red.” Sometimes this can extend beyond simple logic to obvious definitional facts: “The red bicycle has two wheels.”

            One particular kind of tautology is “assuming the antecedent”, also known as “circular logic”. This is often engaged in by Bible thumpers, who will justify their argument with Biblical citations and take the Bible’s own assertions as proof of its being true. A classic example of this, which one will ultimately run into in any lengthy discussion of the Bible with a fundamentalist Christian, is “I know what the Bible says is true, because the Bible says it is.”


          • I remember when I got my Masters in Philosophy, the reason I took Philosophy is because with my work in Ancient Greek, maybe I can teach, but I was a sick man. But you are right, I can’t argue.

          • Mr Flayton, you mentioned earlier in this thread that you “don’t know anything about homeopathy”. I would like kindly, gently and respectfully to suggest that you could gain some knowledge by reading a book or two on the subject. Professor Ernst’s book “Homeopathy, The Undiluted Facts” would be a superb starting point for you.

            I have found that, particularly in the USA, there seems to be some confusion of homeopathy with ‘naturopathic’ and herbal remedies – they are very different indeed.

          • Where would be the fastest and cheapest place to get it. I like you guys across the pond, even though, it’s probably frozen now.

          • You can obtain it from in the USA, either as Kindle or Paperback.


            I can also recommend “Trick or Treatment” written by Professor Ernst and Dr Simon Singh, which has information on homeopathy and on other ‘alternative’ modalities.


          • Thanks I think your right, we tend to mix things to much here. To tell you the truth they are finding many Chinese herbal formulas can damage the liver and other organs. Hundreds of years a go they had no idea and they thought their formulas bordered on perfection. So I came to Homeopathy trying to avoid herbal mishaps. So we shall see.

          • Chinese herbal remedies are a minefield, because they are not subject to the controls under which western pharmaceutical firms operate. So you can’t really be sure what you’re getting, in a Chinese ‘herbal’ remedy.

            An example from the 1990s in the UK was the appearance on the market of various Chinese ‘herbal’ skin creams for treating eczema (an inflammatory skin condition). Some appeared to be extremely successful at calming inflammation. But rather than being purely herbal, they were found to contain varying strengths of topical corticosteroids. Now, topical corticosteroid creams and ointments are highly important in managing eczema flare-ups. BUT it is very important to know what strengths you are using and in what concentration. The Chinese creams did not give that information, and the steroids could vary from batch to batch.

            Another aspect is that when we think of herbal medicines we may imagine sun-dappled meadows growing in remote unspoiled locations. But in practice, it seems that some plants were gathered from roadsides with trucks thundering past all day, and were highly contaminated with heavy metals and other dangerous particulate substances.

            It’s a little beyond the scope of this thread, probably, to go too far into this, but what is promoted today as “Chinese Herbal Medicine” is not based on ancient empirical healing knowledge, but is basically a modern marketing operation, chains of shops that spread like ringworm through cities.

            You are right that homeopathic ‘medicines’ are safer than Chinese herbs, but only because they do not actually contain any medicine. And if you have a serious, progressive health condition that needs medicine, and you take no medicine, you are in trouble…..

          • You are right, that is why you have to rely on good companies who have a chain to the best chinese labs and they test for every possible danger, even then you really don’t know what you are getting. Eagle Herbs is one such company, started by accupuncturists, who spent years studying in China and it’s hospitals. There is one herbal company that beats them all for honesty and quality-GAIA Herbs. Ope3n University sounds great, thanks.

          • “I remember when I got my Masters in Philosophy…”

            MA in Philosophy, The Open University

            Studying this MA in Philosophy will hone your ability to think clearly and logically, and develop your writing, research and analytical skills.

            Entry requirements

            To study successfully for this MA, you need to be able to:
            ● write clear, concise, accurate prose
            ● read large quantities of text quickly, accurately and critically
            ● classify evidence precisely and assess its value and reliability
            ● argue logically, consistently and sceptically
            ● marshal various sorts of evidence to support a logical argument.


          • I didn’t get that last message, I went to a great school in North Carolina. I don’t know anything about the open school, but I am 70 years old, I have a degree in Bio, Philosophy, and Ancient languages I received from different schools. Most of the things I learned about health was helped by the various learning.

          • The Open University is a marvellous institution, consistently ranked high among academic institutions worldwide for various fields of study.

            It was founded by the British government in 1969 to provide routes into Higher Education for persons whose circumstances did not allow them full-time campus based study at a traditional university. It pioneered the use of Radio and Television broadcasting for education (decades before the Internet of course), in addition to printed course texts and in-person tutorials.

            You can read about the history of The Open University here and the main website for the University is

          • @ mark flayton & David B

            You never really know for sure what you are getting in many things we purchase. That’s why I stopped consuming most vitamin supplements.
            Pharmaceutical companies can be guilty of the same, however I will admit mostly by accident since they have much to lose if ever proved to be intentional.


            Potential cancer causing is a serious charge.

          • “You never really know for sure what you are getting in many things we purchase.”
            But it is checkable – except for homeopathics.

          • @EE

            Ohhhh, we can check for ourselves ? How, by looking at the label and reading the list of ingredients ? Taking out the white paper and getting the information from the manufacture ? I don’t trust those methods.

    • “everyone is right based on the minds they have”

      Each of the eight billion people currently on Earth experiences their unique personal reality; whereas there is only one actuality.

      E.g., a person remembers a dream they experienced while asleep. This dream is incorporated into their personal reality, but their dream does not exist in actuality.

      “and there is no coming down from homeopathy, like there is with other substances”

      Tell me about it! I’m still coming down from an ibuprofen tablet I took thirty years ago.

    • @ marc flayton

      “everyone is right based on the minds they have.”

      Thank you for sharing your thought, Mr Flayton. Since you have taken the time to express your thought here, can I ask you please to say what mind you have about whether any homeopath or laboratory anywhere can distinguish between Nat mur 30C and Rhus tox 30C with the labels off the bottles?

      • nat mur is made from salt and rus tox is made from a plant, I believe. At 30C there is not enough of the original mother tincture, to distinguish. That’s why labeling and careful passing on provenance is so important. This is true in pharmacology, and in homeopathy, as well as anytime you’re dealing with any substance. I can’t tell you how many stories I’ve heard of people taking the wrong medication or the wrong dosage-due to human error. As far at what you are getting at an electron microscope can do the detection you require.

        • No, an electron microscope cannot, based on the mind I have.

          • That is why we don’t have the same mind.

          • Eh? We don’t have the same mind because electron microscopes can’t distinguish Nat mur 30C from Rhus tox 30C?


            Exploring the effects of Potentizations by Electron Microscopy…

          • @ marc flayton

            I guess this is the article you offered as a distraction from the succinct question asked by DavidB:

            Potentization is a process of successive dilutions and vigorous succussions of a substance or initial tincture. Transmission electron microscopy is adopted for the investigation of potentized ethanol- and water-based solutions of gold and reveals nanoparticles and various assemblies formed in accordance with the level of potentization. Raman spectroscopy is further applied in combination with articial intelligence algorithms for the analysis of potentized puried water, unpuried water, and puried water- based gold solutions. The proposed methodology is promising and sound in distinguishing potentized and non-potentized spectra or spectra obtained at different levels of potentization.

            Exploring the Effects of Potentization by Electron Microscopy, Raman Spectroscopy and AI Algorithms
            Camelia Berghian-Grosan, Drosos Kourounis, Alin Sebastian Porav, Ilknur Dag, Kursad Osman Ay, George Vithoulkas

            In what important way(s), do you suppose, is a water-based solution of gold different from a water-based solution of sodium chloride used in the manufacturing of Natrum muriaticum 30C aka Natrium muriaticum 30C.

            See also

          • Thanks for your timely insight, I was getting beat up because I declared that different minds think in different ways. You have to weigh fact and opinion. Truth is usually a mixture.

          • @ marc flayton

            Perhaps you will answer my question, because it is highly relevant to your reply to the questions asked by DavidB:

            In what important way(s), do you suppose, is a water-based solution of gold different from a water-based solution of sodium chloride used in the manufacturing of Natrum muriaticum 30C aka Natrium muriaticum 30C.

          • Going way back to Organic Chemistry 01 it would be the rate and route that electrons of the solute are given up to the solvent. and visa versa. Salt and water more easily form their covalent bonds.’ , wheras it is harder for gold and water or ethanol,to do the same. Resulting in that it would take a tremendous amount of more energy to form bonds between gold and water.

          • @marc flayton

            You have to weigh fact and opinion. Truth is usually a mixture.

            This depends on what your goal is. If you want to establish scientific facts(*), then you want to take opinion out of the process as much as possible.
            Opinion has no place in any research into the efficacy of any treatment, other than as something to control for (usually the placebo effect).

            About this research with electron microscopes and the likes: this seems like a good example of bad science. The gist of the matter seems to be that these people observed differences between several batches of shaken water and other solvents when looking at solid residues through an electron microscope. I can find no initial hypothesis about what they expected to observe, and for what reason. I can also not find any explanations for their observations, and in particular not the very mundane explanation that electron microscopes will always show lots of particulate matter, contaminations and debris if you’re not extremely careful about what you do(**).
            The rest of the research also reads like an extended fishing trip, even invoking AI in order to find patterns that are not obvious in their data (which pretty much seems to be noise) – patterns that are almost certainly statistical artefacts, not real phenomena.

            *: Yes, I know, science doesn’t do ‘facts’ or ‘truth’. Science deals with ‘most likely explanations’. Yet some of those most likely explanations have been tested and researched to such an extent that for all intents and purposes, they can be taken for a fact. For homeopathy, the most likely explanation for any positive effects are simply human traits/phenomena, the most prominent one being the placebo effect. The notion that homeopathy has any real, objectively observable effects is very unlikely, as it would mean that much of our modern-day body of knowledge about (bio)chemistry, physics and biology is false.

            **: I recall some recent panic mongering from the anti-vaccine crowd when researchers put evaporated vaccine residues under an electron microscope and were ‘shocked’ to find all sorts of contaminants. They apparently didn’t know that you will always find contaminants, and that the amounts they reported were extremely low, even for medicine standards.

          • Thanks for your reply and the thought you put in to it. I don’t know anything about homeopathy. I’ve spent most of my health orientation, learning the Chinese herbal system. You guys are pretty well read and interesting. I’m glad I found your site.

          • @ marc flayton

            We seem to be making a little progress. Sodium chloride is one of the most water-soluble materials; gold is one of the least water-soluble materials.

            So, it should come as no surprise that some tiny fragments of gold remained after attempting to dilute gold with water (or ethanol). Promoters of homeopathy use gold in their childish ‘experiments’ for three very simple reasons:
            1. it is almost impossible to dilute accurately;
            2. it is relatively easy to detect in small concentrations;
            3. unlike sodium chloride, the human body doesn’t contain circa 200 grams of it.

            A red herring, besides being a type of pickled fish, is a fallacious argument style in which an irrelevant or false topic is presented in an attempt to divert attention from the original issue, with the intention of “winning” an argument by leading attention away from the original argument and on to another, often unrelated topic.

            This sort of “reasoning” is fallacious because changing the topic of discussion does not count as an argument against a claim.


          • Everything you say is reasonable and also logical. And I believe if you have the right mind anything can be scientifically explained. On the other hand have you ever tried homeopathy, yourself? And what do you have against it.?

          • @marc flayton

            And I believe if you have the right mind anything can be scientifically explained.

            Hm, I think this is a bit of an over-optimistic point of view, but yes, most objective observations (as opposed to people’s feelings and beliefs) have some pretty darn good scientific explanations these days. Then again, those explanations are of course meant as a way to make people understand, and this means that they’re at best to be considered approximations of what is really going on. For instance, I think I know slightly more about quantum physics than the average person in the street, but I can only take this knowledge at face value – I don’t really understand it. To be honest, I haven’t got even a smidgen of a clue about what really happens at that scale of physics. There are plenty of people who have a much better grasp of this than I do – but I still think that there are very few people in the world who ‘understand’ it in the same intuitive way that you and I understand the physics of weight/force and acceleration.
            Then again, we have evolved with these latter phenomena, among other things to kill dinner from a distance by throwing (heavy and/or sharp) stuff at it. Getting intuitively good at this was good for survival. So there’s a nice link between objective physics and our intuitive brain.

            Anyway, about homeopathy: personal experience is not a good way to judge its efficacy. There are too many human traits as well as biological mechanisms that can give a very vivid illusion of efficacy to any one individual user. Only when you do proper double-blind placebo-controlled randomized trials with lots of participants is it possible to start saying something about efficacy. Such trials, expensive and complex as they invariably are, have been done, and the general outcome is that homeopathy has no effect beyond placebo. Yes, if someone says it makes them feel better, then they are probably telling the truth – because that is how the placebo effect works. But it doesn’t actively make them better (also note that spontaneous recovery often coincides with treatment).

            And oh, about Chinese traditional medicine: perhaps you are familiar with this book by Dugald Christie, a Scottish physician who worked in China around 1900:
            It presents an interesting account of real traditional Chinese medicine, before Mao Zedong subverted it into a political tool and a matter of national pride.

          • Yes for hundreds of years in China the physician was thought as of being higher than the priest. So they take it very seriously, thanks great response will read it again and again.

          • “On the other hand have you ever tried homeopathy, yourself?”

            Yes, for a very long time, along with many other branches of the so-called alternative medicine tree.

            “And what do you have against it.?”

            It doesn’t cure any known illness and it delays proper diagnosis, sometimes with horrific consequences.

            I sincerely wish it did work, but wishing doesn’t make things come true.

          • I feel the same way it is like a band aid.

          • @Marc Flayton

            Going way back to Organic Chemistry 01 it would be the rate and route that electrons of the solute are given up to the solvent. and visa versa. Salt and water more easily form their covalent bonds.

            Nope, salt doesn’t form covalent bonds when dissolved in water. And neither salt, water or gold contain carbon.

  • Professor Ernst, Have you ever found anything in Homeopathy that takes care of chronic constipation?

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