6

votes

What Does Everyone Think About Alternative Medicine?

Answered on September 12, 2014
Created June 07, 2012 at 9:45 PM

Acupuncture, chiropractic, herbalism, homeopathy, etc.

I'd be interested to know what everyone thought of these various forms of treatment. I myself have had a lot of help from these forms, especially since both my acupuncturist and herbalist recommended the paleo diet.

Also, can a chiro really treat a hiatal hernia? My mom has one and I've been reading about it on the web, but I notice chiros tend to claim to be able to cure everything from digestive issues to world hungry.

9af2c2c49634ea6caea14af9e1431b82

on June 25, 2012
at 03:36 PM

If the medicine is pulled from the market for not working, then it really isn't medicine, is it? Some of you are claiming that I blindly follow the advice of doctors. I don't. Doctors are practitioners, not scientists. @MathGirl72 1) I didn't say that everything the pharmaceutical industry does is correct. The Pharm. industry is a business that benefits from medical research, they're not one in the same. 2) Side effects don't imply that something isn't working. You know what does? A lack of scientific evidence showing a correlation of effect.

91882203467f64f68f25f58f1caeee68

(1017)

on June 20, 2012
at 10:54 AM

coconut oil made my acne significantly worse, in fact the worst it has ever been in my life was when I was consuming 3 tbsp a day for a month. Lowering carbs, and more specifically refined sugar, does help a LOT.

A2c38be4c54c91a15071f82f14cac0b3

(12682)

on June 20, 2012
at 02:54 AM

You say potato, I say potahto. You say magic, I say a placebo effect that increases endorphins and it's benefit is likely via that mechanism.

5457372e78a910c00cd1dd579ecbdce3

(1230)

on June 20, 2012
at 02:50 AM

Oh and by the way if you think that 5000 years cannot be wrong then why do you identify with Paleo, one of our core concepts is that we have been wrong for OVER 10,000!

5457372e78a910c00cd1dd579ecbdce3

(1230)

on June 20, 2012
at 02:49 AM

Oh and by the way if you think that 5000 cannot be wrong then why do you identify with Paleo, one of our core concepts is that we have been wrong for OVER 10,000!

F31d10b54b31428e189d9b771bf7b1d1

(1439)

on June 20, 2012
at 02:24 AM

Have you not been helped by upping your fat and especially coconut oil input and lowering your carb input? And is not this alternative healing, for I guarantee that mainstream doctors would tell you to not do this.

F31d10b54b31428e189d9b771bf7b1d1

(1439)

on June 20, 2012
at 02:21 AM

We don't need Quackbusters anymore. The Internet will allow us to figure out who is the phony and who isn't.

F31d10b54b31428e189d9b771bf7b1d1

(1439)

on June 20, 2012
at 02:17 AM

Sometimes a lot of pain is necessary to open a mind. +1

F31d10b54b31428e189d9b771bf7b1d1

(1439)

on June 20, 2012
at 02:16 AM

Homeopathy worked wonders for me, many times. Yes, I know it is magic. But so what? If magic is unreal, I guess falling in love is unreal and justice is unreal.

5457372e78a910c00cd1dd579ecbdce3

(1230)

on June 20, 2012
at 02:15 AM

Well, I am giving Cast Iron a +1 for stating their opinion honestly and sticking to their guns when attacked by people with a different belief. Just because a person trusts fact over faith is no reason to attack them.

F31d10b54b31428e189d9b771bf7b1d1

(1439)

on June 20, 2012
at 02:08 AM

I am not the least bit sorry. I gave you another -1. I have two lovely children because I did not blindly follow the doctors advice, which was a massive hysterectomy for endometriosis and went rather for homeopathy and traditional Chinese medicine. And I bet my children are healthier and sweeter and more wonderful than your children.

Ce7e28769d92d5de5533e775b1de966e

on June 20, 2012
at 01:28 AM

I don't utilize chiro's anymore, and for those that do and see positive results? Approve. Acupuncture I have appointments monthly. Approve. Homeopathy? Approve. Herbalism? Approve.

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on June 12, 2012
at 02:47 AM

@Cast Iron Brick - Medicine has been proven to work? Have you ever seen the side effects lists that come with pharmaceuticals? How about meds that are pulled from the market? That isn't "working." Do no harm is certainly not the mantra of big pharma.

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on June 12, 2012
at 02:43 AM

Start with the link Holly posted.

Cc3ce03985eac5ebcbb95fc2329f13b0

(7370)

on June 11, 2012
at 01:28 AM

Perhaps we should start with you giving more specific complaints, and what *you* are considering to be an expert? Who qualifies to debunk alternative medicine?

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on June 11, 2012
at 12:43 AM

Do a Google search on the quacks that make up quackbusters. Using their own site to justify they are "experts" is as good as pseudoscience.

9af2c2c49634ea6caea14af9e1431b82

on June 09, 2012
at 05:57 PM

@VB that is some bizarre nonsensical rambling

9af2c2c49634ea6caea14af9e1431b82

on June 09, 2012
at 05:33 PM

@Sol I understand that all medicines are developed from herbs and fora. The difference is that medicine are the ones that have been proven to work, rather than anecdotally.

91882203467f64f68f25f58f1caeee68

(1017)

on June 09, 2012
at 02:28 PM

They were under the direction of two different naturopathic doctors. Are herbalists different?

35b2cb4d450e5288895c255dfdfff35d

(5828)

on June 09, 2012
at 12:43 AM

@Ben - A few more links, provided by Jon Barron's office: http://www.jonbarron.org/immunity/flu-echinacea-natural-health-remedies http://www.jonbarron.org/natural-health/vitamin-e-prostate-cancer-study http://www.jonbarron.org/natural-health/robert-carroll-professional-skeptics-dictionary

E8dd83fe24a0879d8b16ab4ca92b72dd

(1307)

on June 09, 2012
at 12:30 AM

Sol. Ben. Let's do it. I'm onboard. If you need a currently sunburnt guy stupid enough to lay out in the sun with coconut oil on, I'm your man.

Fd70d71f4f8195c3a098eda4fc817d4f

(8014)

on June 08, 2012
at 05:53 PM

"Stephen Barrett has more stink on him than my ZC shit does." LMAO!

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on June 08, 2012
at 05:04 PM

I can't remember the title. It went back to the library (I'm a good boy, lol). It was one of Patrick Holford's books. I wouldn't bother with it now. I think he likes to limit meat and include soya. Not a diet that would suit me but the practitioner I found in the back of the book was a great help to me. She didn't have the fear of sat fat that Holford seems to have.

518bce04b12cd77741237e1f61075194

(11577)

on June 08, 2012
at 04:58 PM

Yay for keeping the epi-pen and benedryl on hand! My BF's mom thought she got rid of his allergies with herbs when he was younger- after three trips to emerg with untreated anaphylaxis, I think they were pretty much ready to take him away from her. Always be ready with emergency supplies! Benedryl, epi-pen, charcoal, and gravol can save you from a lot of situations.

F5a0ddffcf9ef5beca864050f090a790

(15515)

on June 08, 2012
at 04:46 PM

@BoneBroth - LOL. I hope you understand the difference between food/herbs/natural supplements and religion. You cannot digest religion. By the way, the roots of religion are totally physiological/biological. Read Robert Sapolsky. In addition: no, 5000 years cannot be wrong when it comes to eating something. In my culture we gather wild mushrooms and have been doing so for many centuries. We have a saying - all mushrooms are edible. But some of them you can eat only once. Same goes for herb. You cannot say it about religion :)

F5a0ddffcf9ef5beca864050f090a790

(15515)

on June 08, 2012
at 04:41 PM

@Cast Iron Brick - I WOULD BET MY LIFE on my herbal medicine. In fact, I already did. I have wasted many months of my life not going to a herbal doctor, thinking "how good can he be". You can read my story under one of my question - about my herbal experience. Too many ailments to list :)

F5a0ddffcf9ef5beca864050f090a790

(15515)

on June 08, 2012
at 04:34 PM

What was the name of the book, by the way? Do you still have it? +1 for sharing your story.

5ccb98f6ae42ce87e206cf3f6a86039f

(11581)

on June 08, 2012
at 03:59 PM

At the very least people need to be skeptical. As I've heard frequently, it's good to keep and open mind, but not so open that your bran falls out.

5ccb98f6ae42ce87e206cf3f6a86039f

(11581)

on June 08, 2012
at 03:57 PM

Ben, that's true. I see a lot of that as a major problem in the education system (particularly US ed). We live in a world where changes occur constantly and rapidly, where information comes in as a deluge, where tv advertisements are incredibly effective persuastion. Yet most people have no idea how to sift out the garbage because our schools do not teach critical thinking and research skills.

0a9ad4e577fe24a6b8aafa1dd7a50c79

(5150)

on June 08, 2012
at 03:23 PM

"5000 years of Chinese medicine cannot be wrong." I believe in herbalism, but that statement is incorrect. What about religions? Most religions have several-thousand-year track records.

35b2cb4d450e5288895c255dfdfff35d

(5828)

on June 08, 2012
at 03:21 PM

Cast Iron Brick - Where do you think most drugs come from?

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on June 08, 2012
at 02:45 PM

"If nothing else works, go alternative." +1

9af2c2c49634ea6caea14af9e1431b82

on June 08, 2012
at 02:12 PM

"5,000 years of Chinese medicine cannot be wrong" This flat out isn't true. There's no reason that something has to be valid just because it has progressed through time. I'm not going to say that no part of it works. In 5000 years, you are bound to find some combination of chemicals from plant extracts that have actual medicinal effects, but I wouldn't bet my life on it. I'd love to know what you're taking and for what ailment. I'd be curious to know if there has been any study done on its effects, and how much of that effect is compared to established placebo effects.

1e443a3241f80129faa05125ce346e47

(734)

on June 08, 2012
at 11:14 AM

Definitely agree with it, although I've got one little 'remark'. "Just don't buy into something on faith. Go with the science." is definitely something I would advocate too, but as the answer above already indicated, science can't always be trusted and it's quite hard for the regular person who didn't have any 'scientific' training, so to speak, to find out for himself whether a therapy is legit or not.

1e443a3241f80129faa05125ce346e47

(734)

on June 08, 2012
at 11:11 AM

@Jamie... I've been thinking about an organization that promotes science to cooperate with alternative medicine and vice versa, so that (a) people can benefit from both aspects and (b) the distinction between science and alternative medicine as we know it today could one day even disappear. Maybe I'm just utterly naive (I probably am :) ), but I do believe there's some potential in that idea anyway.

1e443a3241f80129faa05125ce346e47

(734)

on June 08, 2012
at 11:06 AM

@Jamie Yes, if I would be possible for science to be (a) more open-minded and (b) somehow letting go of corporate interests, I believe we could see major breakthroughs being made. It would result in more people being actually cured and less people being scammed (because a lot of those who do feel conventional medicine doesn't offer a solution look for alternative treatment, but don't always know the difference between a genuine therapist and a scammer).

1e443a3241f80129faa05125ce346e47

(734)

on June 08, 2012
at 11:03 AM

@Sol Thank you for taking the time to look it up and even emailing them. I appreciate it. Those articles (and its references) will definitely keep me busy for a while. :)

Bb3d1772b28c02da2426e40dfcb533f5

(5381)

on June 08, 2012
at 10:36 AM

Also, theres great benefits in using the scientific approach, as if one is either overly sceptically, or overly beleiving, one misses the truth. So would be great if natural therapists where more interested in the logic and science too..

Bb3d1772b28c02da2426e40dfcb533f5

(5381)

on June 08, 2012
at 10:34 AM

Agreed fully. Its a shame that high technology cannot be applied holistically, or that modern doctors cant think holistically, because it seems to me the best system would be a combination of approaches...

F5a0ddffcf9ef5beca864050f090a790

(15515)

on June 08, 2012
at 08:17 AM

You cannot try countless natural remedies without seeing a certified licensed herbal doctor. Self-medicating will do more harm than good.

F5a0ddffcf9ef5beca864050f090a790

(15515)

on June 08, 2012
at 08:15 AM

Sorry, I was the one who gave you -1. I can live because of that alternative medicine. I don't care if it has been backed up by scientific data or not. It works. It works for many many people. 5,000 years of Chinese medicine cannot be wrong. If you ever get very sick (God forbid) let me know - I will give you a name of a very good herbal doctor who will save your life

F5a0ddffcf9ef5beca864050f090a790

(15515)

on June 08, 2012
at 08:14 AM

Sorry, I was the one who gave you -1. I can live because of that alternative medicine. I don't care if it has been backed up by scientific data or not. It works. It works for many many people. 5,000 years of Chinese medicine cannot be wrong. If you ever get very sick (God forbit) let me know - I will give you a name of a very good herbal doctor who will save your life.

Cc3ce03985eac5ebcbb95fc2329f13b0

(7370)

on June 08, 2012
at 04:11 AM

What? The advisors to the site have to have expertise http://www.quackwatch.com/09Advisors/advbd.html and how else should they settle disputes and fraud except in a court of law?

35b2cb4d450e5288895c255dfdfff35d

(5828)

on June 08, 2012
at 03:59 AM

Ben - I just sent an email to Jon Barron's organization to see if they can point me to references for my claim above.

35b2cb4d450e5288895c255dfdfff35d

(5828)

on June 08, 2012
at 03:30 AM

Ben - I'm not finding the article I was looking for that has references but I would recommend this article (http://www.jonbarron.org/natural-health/alternative-medicine-valid-not-bunk) and this one (http://www.jonbarron.org/natural-health/unproven-conventional-medicine-newsletter). Both articles have references.

E8dd83fe24a0879d8b16ab4ca92b72dd

(1307)

on June 08, 2012
at 01:37 AM

+1 For Keanu Reeves response.

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on June 08, 2012
at 01:33 AM

It's hard to take anything on that site seriously when the "experts" aren't and use the court system to make money.

1e443a3241f80129faa05125ce346e47

(734)

on June 08, 2012
at 12:33 AM

"When Western medicine wants to poo poo alternative medicine, it's really easy. They pick one intervention (let's say herbs), they give test subjects a pitifully low dose of the herb, wait a short period of time, and report that nothing happens. They're using their paradigm to discredit a whole other paradigm. That's comparing apples to oranges." Could you give an example of a clinical trial that does exactly that? It's not that I don't believe it (it sounds exactly as what I would expect), but I'd just like to see it with my own eyes.

782d92f4127823bdfb2ddfcbcf961d0e

(5231)

on June 08, 2012
at 12:25 AM

+1 for imbalance that you're going to throw a drug at. It's one of the reasons why I'm no longer practicing pharmacy.

1e443a3241f80129faa05125ce346e47

(734)

on June 08, 2012
at 12:22 AM

" When you're in an acute crisis (heart attack, got run over by a truck, and other immediate life threatening illnesses), Western medicine has the best technology to keep you alive. For chronic illness, it's not so great." That's exactly what I've heard many times and there's definitely a whole lot of truth in that statement. I think one of the reasons the chronic treatments aren't as good as they could be is industry interests: there's a lot of money to be made of people who are chronically ill...

5ccb98f6ae42ce87e206cf3f6a86039f

(11581)

on June 08, 2012
at 12:03 AM

+1 for homeopathy cartoon. So true.

1e443a3241f80129faa05125ce346e47

(734)

on June 07, 2012
at 11:45 PM

I know coconut oil can work against acné... Just saying :)

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17 Answers

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19
35b2cb4d450e5288895c255dfdfff35d

(5828)

on June 07, 2012
at 10:21 PM

Permit me to get on my soapbox.

It's a huge pet peeve of mine that we compare alternative/complementary/holistic medicine to allopathic (Western) medicine. Western medicine treats the body as a machine. You manipulate the input (the drug) and hopefully you get the result you want with few side effects, or you treat the side effects with more drugs. When you're in an acute crisis (heart attack, got run over by a truck, and other immediate life threatening illnesses, Western medicine has the best technology to keep you alive. For chronic illness, it's not so great.

The holistic paradigm is very different. If someone is ill they might do a combination of diet changes, herbs, acupuncture, chiropractic, lifestyle changes, relaxation techniques, and other modalities TOGETHER. That's the point of holistic healing. You're looking for something deeper than some superficial imbalance that you're going to throw a drug at. You're looking for a number of shifts that you can make together to help someone heal.

When we come to a paleo diet to heal their illnesses I imagine that many of us also quit smoking, get more sleep, slow down, maybe focus more on our relationships. In other words, many of us are making a number of changes, holistically, to improve our lives. And, these holistic changes can take much longer to sink in than a drug that targets one symptom.

When Western medicine wants to poo poo alternative medicine, it's really easy. They pick one intervention (let's say herbs), they give test subjects a pitifully low dose of the herb, wait a short period of time, and report that nothing happens. They're using their paradigm to discredit a whole other paradigm. That's comparing apples to oranges.

So, when someone asks me if herbs work, or acupuncture, or chiropractic, my answer is always -- it depends. It depends on the skill of the practitioner, the power of their technology, and very much on what else the client is doing to heal themselves. So, it's not a simple question of whether something is quackery or not. It takes much more investigation to answer that question and everyone will have their own answer. But, there's no simple answer even with Western medicine either.

Bb3d1772b28c02da2426e40dfcb533f5

(5381)

on June 08, 2012
at 10:36 AM

Also, theres great benefits in using the scientific approach, as if one is either overly sceptically, or overly beleiving, one misses the truth. So would be great if natural therapists where more interested in the logic and science too..

1e443a3241f80129faa05125ce346e47

(734)

on June 08, 2012
at 12:22 AM

" When you're in an acute crisis (heart attack, got run over by a truck, and other immediate life threatening illnesses), Western medicine has the best technology to keep you alive. For chronic illness, it's not so great." That's exactly what I've heard many times and there's definitely a whole lot of truth in that statement. I think one of the reasons the chronic treatments aren't as good as they could be is industry interests: there's a lot of money to be made of people who are chronically ill...

35b2cb4d450e5288895c255dfdfff35d

(5828)

on June 08, 2012
at 03:59 AM

Ben - I just sent an email to Jon Barron's organization to see if they can point me to references for my claim above.

1e443a3241f80129faa05125ce346e47

(734)

on June 08, 2012
at 12:33 AM

"When Western medicine wants to poo poo alternative medicine, it's really easy. They pick one intervention (let's say herbs), they give test subjects a pitifully low dose of the herb, wait a short period of time, and report that nothing happens. They're using their paradigm to discredit a whole other paradigm. That's comparing apples to oranges." Could you give an example of a clinical trial that does exactly that? It's not that I don't believe it (it sounds exactly as what I would expect), but I'd just like to see it with my own eyes.

Bb3d1772b28c02da2426e40dfcb533f5

(5381)

on June 08, 2012
at 10:34 AM

Agreed fully. Its a shame that high technology cannot be applied holistically, or that modern doctors cant think holistically, because it seems to me the best system would be a combination of approaches...

1e443a3241f80129faa05125ce346e47

(734)

on June 08, 2012
at 11:06 AM

@Jamie Yes, if I would be possible for science to be (a) more open-minded and (b) somehow letting go of corporate interests, I believe we could see major breakthroughs being made. It would result in more people being actually cured and less people being scammed (because a lot of those who do feel conventional medicine doesn't offer a solution look for alternative treatment, but don't always know the difference between a genuine therapist and a scammer).

782d92f4127823bdfb2ddfcbcf961d0e

(5231)

on June 08, 2012
at 12:25 AM

+1 for imbalance that you're going to throw a drug at. It's one of the reasons why I'm no longer practicing pharmacy.

1e443a3241f80129faa05125ce346e47

(734)

on June 08, 2012
at 11:03 AM

@Sol Thank you for taking the time to look it up and even emailing them. I appreciate it. Those articles (and its references) will definitely keep me busy for a while. :)

35b2cb4d450e5288895c255dfdfff35d

(5828)

on June 08, 2012
at 03:30 AM

Ben - I'm not finding the article I was looking for that has references but I would recommend this article (http://www.jonbarron.org/natural-health/alternative-medicine-valid-not-bunk) and this one (http://www.jonbarron.org/natural-health/unproven-conventional-medicine-newsletter). Both articles have references.

1e443a3241f80129faa05125ce346e47

(734)

on June 08, 2012
at 11:11 AM

@Jamie... I've been thinking about an organization that promotes science to cooperate with alternative medicine and vice versa, so that (a) people can benefit from both aspects and (b) the distinction between science and alternative medicine as we know it today could one day even disappear. Maybe I'm just utterly naive (I probably am :) ), but I do believe there's some potential in that idea anyway.

E8dd83fe24a0879d8b16ab4ca92b72dd

(1307)

on June 09, 2012
at 12:30 AM

Sol. Ben. Let's do it. I'm onboard. If you need a currently sunburnt guy stupid enough to lay out in the sun with coconut oil on, I'm your man.

35b2cb4d450e5288895c255dfdfff35d

(5828)

on June 09, 2012
at 12:43 AM

@Ben - A few more links, provided by Jon Barron's office: http://www.jonbarron.org/immunity/flu-echinacea-natural-health-remedies http://www.jonbarron.org/natural-health/vitamin-e-prostate-cancer-study http://www.jonbarron.org/natural-health/robert-carroll-professional-skeptics-dictionary

8
0a9ad4e577fe24a6b8aafa1dd7a50c79

on June 08, 2012
at 01:58 AM

Herbs/herbalism work because herbs are FOOD - they are true compounds with significant chemical power to alter our body chemistry in a (hopefully) positive way.

Homeopathy is bull and until someone comes out with a study showing homeopathy has ANY effect, nobody should waste their money on overpriced water.*

8
5ccb98f6ae42ce87e206cf3f6a86039f

(11581)

on June 07, 2012
at 10:09 PM

Some of it is good, some of it is bad, some of it has really useful placebo effect which fits nicely into the "do no harm" injunction. It's hard to find good reliable research due to problems with funding, especially with drug companies providing so much of the funding out there.

alt="temp_alt"

That isn't to say to just by what the first doctor you see tells you. There's a huge amount of BS out there. It means to do the work. Get a second or third diagnosis from the best docs in the field that you can find.

alt="temp_alt"

Just don't buy into something on faith. Go with the science.

5ccb98f6ae42ce87e206cf3f6a86039f

(11581)

on June 08, 2012
at 03:59 PM

At the very least people need to be skeptical. As I've heard frequently, it's good to keep and open mind, but not so open that your bran falls out.

1e443a3241f80129faa05125ce346e47

(734)

on June 08, 2012
at 11:14 AM

Definitely agree with it, although I've got one little 'remark'. "Just don't buy into something on faith. Go with the science." is definitely something I would advocate too, but as the answer above already indicated, science can't always be trusted and it's quite hard for the regular person who didn't have any 'scientific' training, so to speak, to find out for himself whether a therapy is legit or not.

5ccb98f6ae42ce87e206cf3f6a86039f

(11581)

on June 08, 2012
at 03:57 PM

Ben, that's true. I see a lot of that as a major problem in the education system (particularly US ed). We live in a world where changes occur constantly and rapidly, where information comes in as a deluge, where tv advertisements are incredibly effective persuastion. Yet most people have no idea how to sift out the garbage because our schools do not teach critical thinking and research skills.

7
A2c38be4c54c91a15071f82f14cac0b3

(12682)

on June 07, 2012
at 10:28 PM

As far as chiropracty, acupuncture, and herbalism I say it depends on how they're used and what they're used to treat. I think they can help in some cases, do nothing, or hurt in others. It depends on context, but I don't rule them out and I appreciate discussion of their merits.

Except for homeopathy. That stuff is wierd. I don't buy it at all.

5ccb98f6ae42ce87e206cf3f6a86039f

(11581)

on June 08, 2012
at 12:03 AM

+1 for homeopathy cartoon. So true.

E8dd83fe24a0879d8b16ab4ca92b72dd

(1307)

on June 08, 2012
at 01:37 AM

+1 For Keanu Reeves response.

F31d10b54b31428e189d9b771bf7b1d1

(1439)

on June 20, 2012
at 02:16 AM

Homeopathy worked wonders for me, many times. Yes, I know it is magic. But so what? If magic is unreal, I guess falling in love is unreal and justice is unreal.

A2c38be4c54c91a15071f82f14cac0b3

(12682)

on June 20, 2012
at 02:54 AM

You say potato, I say potahto. You say magic, I say a placebo effect that increases endorphins and it's benefit is likely via that mechanism.

5
F5a0ddffcf9ef5beca864050f090a790

(15515)

on June 08, 2012
at 08:12 AM

I used to think that all those naturopaths, herbal doctors and acupuncturist were nothing but people who took advantage of poor innocent "naive" patients. I thought they were there to take your money and sell you a bunch of voodoo medicine.

Till I got so sick that all "traditional" medicine could not figure out what was wrong with me. A friend of mine kept telling me about a herbal doctor that really helped her, but even then, feeling like I was dying, I was reluctant to see him - I thought - if a normal doctor does not know what is wrong with me - how in the world some herbal doctor would know?

I was wrong. Very very wrong. As soon as I started taking herbal medicine, I got much better within a matter of days. And, even though I am not fully recovered yet, I cannot function without my herbal medicine. Literally, my life was saved because of some Chinese herbs with names that are difficult to pronounce.

I have also heard many interesting experiences from people who went for acupuncture. From everything I heard, it really helps.

So, I wish all those insurance companies would cover certified Chinese herbal doctors and holistic nutritionists because THEY REALLY HELP.

If nothing else works, go alternative. I swear by it.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on June 08, 2012
at 02:45 PM

"If nothing else works, go alternative." +1

F31d10b54b31428e189d9b771bf7b1d1

(1439)

on June 20, 2012
at 02:17 AM

Sometimes a lot of pain is necessary to open a mind. +1

5
E8dd83fe24a0879d8b16ab4ca92b72dd

(1307)

on June 08, 2012
at 12:32 AM

Homeopathy always irked me for some reason. I feel it's like when hipster kids started wearing thick-black rimmed glasses and ruined the Buddy Holly look for everybody. Basically, there's quacks in every profession. I've had a dozen urologists say, "All your tests are normal...here! Try this drug!" I don't doubt the power of the placebo effect, BUT I don't think herbalism by a true herbalist nor acupuncture is placebo per say. I know some people pretty damn resistant to the placebo effect, and that stuff works for them. I think some times certain things work better than others, and I also think that holistic healing takes a lot longer (whether it be from diet, supplements, herbs, whatever) than modern medicine. Now, if I get shot, I'm going to the friggin' hospital. If I want a diagnosis, I'll see the doctor. If I want the possibility of a cure, I'm going to look anywhere I can.

And as far as Quackwatch goes...Stephen Barrett has more stink on him than my ZC shit does. There's a lot more reputable people questioning him than the other way around. Plus, I've read far too many articles where he'll quote a study with three people taking an herb, and it works for one and not the other two and he says, "With a 66% failure rate, and clearly one placebo. Chamomile cannot be considered of any benefit."

Fd70d71f4f8195c3a098eda4fc817d4f

(8014)

on June 08, 2012
at 05:53 PM

"Stephen Barrett has more stink on him than my ZC shit does." LMAO!

3
77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on June 08, 2012
at 03:04 PM

As VB said above. "If nothing else works, go alternative." That's what I did. I struggled with a back ache and digestion problems for several years. My doctor was not a lot of help. I felt like I was being treated as a hypochondriac. I was told to take painkillers for my back and was fobbed off with different things about my digestion.
Eventually, he sent me to have some tests at the hospital and to speak to a doctor there. While sat in the waiting area, I noticed that all of the nurses looked unhealthy. I then went in to see this other doctor. Her face was covered in red blotches. I remember thinking to myself "What the hell am I doing in this place?" I was very unhappy with the way I was treated there and never went back.
My girlfriend at the time, brought a naturopthic healing book home from the library. It talked about fresh and natural foods etc. I was interested. At the back of the book was a list of practicioners. I called the nearest one to me and booked an appointment. I followed the advice given and my health started to improve almost straight away.
At about the same time, I also started going to a great chiro. He did the usual joint manipulations. I felt great afterwards but had to go quite often at the beginning. He advised me on some exercises that I could do. I now make sure to strengthen my lower back etc. He also told me that the sore patch on the top of my left ear was in fact, gout.
My back is good these days and I have not needed a chiro in years. Pretty good, considering that I used to have at least one day off work per month with back problems. I put it down to taking the advice from the chiro and actually doing the exercises at home, unlike most people that don't bother with the suggested exercises and just expect the manipulations to fix them.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on June 08, 2012
at 05:04 PM

I can't remember the title. It went back to the library (I'm a good boy, lol). It was one of Patrick Holford's books. I wouldn't bother with it now. I think he likes to limit meat and include soya. Not a diet that would suit me but the practitioner I found in the back of the book was a great help to me. She didn't have the fear of sat fat that Holford seems to have.

F5a0ddffcf9ef5beca864050f090a790

(15515)

on June 08, 2012
at 04:34 PM

What was the name of the book, by the way? Do you still have it? +1 for sharing your story.

3
950efde057e2cc301543059b15f44374

(240)

on June 08, 2012
at 12:17 AM

F31d10b54b31428e189d9b771bf7b1d1

(1439)

on June 20, 2012
at 02:21 AM

We don't need Quackbusters anymore. The Internet will allow us to figure out who is the phony and who isn't.

2
F31d10b54b31428e189d9b771bf7b1d1

on June 20, 2012
at 02:04 AM

The good thing about chiropractors is (1) they can think outside of the box, unlike most MDs, (2) they don't and can't (thank God) prescribe drugs, (3) they know anatomy and physiology, and (4) they understand that the body heals itself, unlike MDs who fancy that they are gods and do all of the healing. Other than that, which is actually a very good place to start from, there is nothing magical about chiropractors. If a chiropractor has done his homework or if the problem resides in the back, a chiropractor can be of great help.

2
61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on June 07, 2012
at 09:55 PM

I see a chiropractor twice a week and an acupuncturist every two weeks. They have helped far more than Western medicine. Sinus infections are treated with herbs and saline rinses; allergies are treated with herbs. Hubby is allergic to fish and shellfish, so we do keep an Epi-pen and Benedryl on hand just in case.

Western medicine has its place in critical situations, but for chronic issues, I prefer to go the natural route. You do have to be careful. There are quacks in every field, in both "alternative" and Western medicine. Research every bit of information and get a second opinion when something seems off.

518bce04b12cd77741237e1f61075194

(11577)

on June 08, 2012
at 04:58 PM

Yay for keeping the epi-pen and benedryl on hand! My BF's mom thought she got rid of his allergies with herbs when he was younger- after three trips to emerg with untreated anaphylaxis, I think they were pretty much ready to take him away from her. Always be ready with emergency supplies! Benedryl, epi-pen, charcoal, and gravol can save you from a lot of situations.

1
363d0a0277a8b61ada3a24ab3ad85d5a

(4642)

on June 20, 2012
at 01:13 AM

I can speak personally to having a chiro make my sliding hiatal hernia go away. He specializes in it. I had an endoscope which diagnosed my hiatal hernia (I had symptoms of nausea after eating anything) and mild gastritis (which the GI said alone wasn't enough for the nausea) but I started seeing a chiro shortly thereafter after looking up those who specialize in hiatal hernia/soft tissue manipulation, and I began to feel better immediately. 6 months later I had an endoscopy and a GI/small bowel series (the barium swallow) and both showed that I no longer had a hiatal hernia. I also lost a lot of weight in this time, this could have only helped.

1
Cc3ce03985eac5ebcbb95fc2329f13b0

on June 07, 2012
at 11:58 PM

I think most of it is bunk, particularly homeopathy. That one does a lot of damage, especially by those thinking they can innoculate their children with homeopathic remedies.

I think diet is very important, and drinking teas certainly won't hurt, but thinking you can dilute something out of existence, and that the "memory" of it remains and does anything is flat out quackery, and the practitioners are charlatans or dupes.

http://www.quackwatch.com/

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on June 08, 2012
at 01:33 AM

It's hard to take anything on that site seriously when the "experts" aren't and use the court system to make money.

Cc3ce03985eac5ebcbb95fc2329f13b0

(7370)

on June 08, 2012
at 04:11 AM

What? The advisors to the site have to have expertise http://www.quackwatch.com/09Advisors/advbd.html and how else should they settle disputes and fraud except in a court of law?

Cc3ce03985eac5ebcbb95fc2329f13b0

(7370)

on June 11, 2012
at 01:28 AM

Perhaps we should start with you giving more specific complaints, and what *you* are considering to be an expert? Who qualifies to debunk alternative medicine?

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on June 11, 2012
at 12:43 AM

Do a Google search on the quacks that make up quackbusters. Using their own site to justify they are "experts" is as good as pseudoscience.

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on June 12, 2012
at 02:43 AM

Start with the link Holly posted.

1
1e443a3241f80129faa05125ce346e47

(734)

on June 07, 2012
at 10:36 PM

It is very difficult, if not impossible, to answer your question completely, since the term 'alternative medicine' is so broad. It encompasses a huge number of disciplines (each with its own variations and combinations) and there even more practitioners from all kinds of backgrounds, some of whom know what they're talking about and genuinely trying to help you, others just looking to scam you.

I can give no general answer to this. Food-based healing (diet, herbs, supplements) definitely can work in a great number of circumstances if the therapist knows what he or she is talking about. Homeopathy seems to be utter B.S. to me (using the substances that make you ill in reduced form to treat that illness) and I know little credible people who promote it. Acupuncture seems to work because of a placebo effect (at least that's what I've heard, based on a recent clinical trial), but it's hard to draw strict conclusions based on that (was the therapist well-trained, was it possible for a clinical trial, which is based on western thought, to draw conclusions from a eastern practice,...?).

So, I would advise you to research both the discipline and the therapist before going to them. That's the only general advice I can give you: research, research, research, and be skeptical.

EDIT: be skeptical, not only about alternative medicine, but also about conventional medicine. There are industry interests involved in many cases, which means some clinical trials are also biased. What I've written above about alternative medicine may seem more negative than my actual position on the matter.

0
F31d10b54b31428e189d9b771bf7b1d1

on June 20, 2012
at 02:11 AM

Like any healing system, you have got to think for yourself. Complementary (complementing the body's own healing powers) healing has been very valuable for me and my family.

0
Fb1acc37c066271cd4addf494f02861e

on June 08, 2012
at 01:56 AM

there is an aphorism for modern medicine stating it's statistical, especially with the Benefit-to-risk ratio.

0
91882203467f64f68f25f58f1caeee68

(1017)

on June 07, 2012
at 11:43 PM

I've been doing acupuncture once a week for 4 months for anxiety and acne. It has done absolutely nothing.

I have also tried countless natural remedies for anxiety and acne. None of them have helped even the slightest bit.

F5a0ddffcf9ef5beca864050f090a790

(15515)

on June 08, 2012
at 08:17 AM

You cannot try countless natural remedies without seeing a certified licensed herbal doctor. Self-medicating will do more harm than good.

1e443a3241f80129faa05125ce346e47

(734)

on June 07, 2012
at 11:45 PM

I know coconut oil can work against acné... Just saying :)

91882203467f64f68f25f58f1caeee68

(1017)

on June 09, 2012
at 02:28 PM

They were under the direction of two different naturopathic doctors. Are herbalists different?

91882203467f64f68f25f58f1caeee68

(1017)

on June 20, 2012
at 10:54 AM

coconut oil made my acne significantly worse, in fact the worst it has ever been in my life was when I was consuming 3 tbsp a day for a month. Lowering carbs, and more specifically refined sugar, does help a LOT.

F31d10b54b31428e189d9b771bf7b1d1

(1439)

on June 20, 2012
at 02:24 AM

Have you not been helped by upping your fat and especially coconut oil input and lowering your carb input? And is not this alternative healing, for I guarantee that mainstream doctors would tell you to not do this.

-1
9af2c2c49634ea6caea14af9e1431b82

on June 08, 2012
at 01:12 AM

Has it been backed up by scientific data? Are the finding significant? Does it avoid the word "energy" at all costs in any sense other than food? No?

Then it's trash.

F5a0ddffcf9ef5beca864050f090a790

(15515)

on June 08, 2012
at 08:14 AM

Sorry, I was the one who gave you -1. I can live because of that alternative medicine. I don't care if it has been backed up by scientific data or not. It works. It works for many many people. 5,000 years of Chinese medicine cannot be wrong. If you ever get very sick (God forbit) let me know - I will give you a name of a very good herbal doctor who will save your life.

35b2cb4d450e5288895c255dfdfff35d

(5828)

on June 08, 2012
at 03:21 PM

Cast Iron Brick - Where do you think most drugs come from?

F5a0ddffcf9ef5beca864050f090a790

(15515)

on June 08, 2012
at 08:15 AM

Sorry, I was the one who gave you -1. I can live because of that alternative medicine. I don't care if it has been backed up by scientific data or not. It works. It works for many many people. 5,000 years of Chinese medicine cannot be wrong. If you ever get very sick (God forbid) let me know - I will give you a name of a very good herbal doctor who will save your life

F5a0ddffcf9ef5beca864050f090a790

(15515)

on June 08, 2012
at 04:41 PM

@Cast Iron Brick - I WOULD BET MY LIFE on my herbal medicine. In fact, I already did. I have wasted many months of my life not going to a herbal doctor, thinking "how good can he be". You can read my story under one of my question - about my herbal experience. Too many ailments to list :)

9af2c2c49634ea6caea14af9e1431b82

on June 08, 2012
at 02:12 PM

"5,000 years of Chinese medicine cannot be wrong" This flat out isn't true. There's no reason that something has to be valid just because it has progressed through time. I'm not going to say that no part of it works. In 5000 years, you are bound to find some combination of chemicals from plant extracts that have actual medicinal effects, but I wouldn't bet my life on it. I'd love to know what you're taking and for what ailment. I'd be curious to know if there has been any study done on its effects, and how much of that effect is compared to established placebo effects.

0a9ad4e577fe24a6b8aafa1dd7a50c79

(5150)

on June 08, 2012
at 03:23 PM

"5000 years of Chinese medicine cannot be wrong." I believe in herbalism, but that statement is incorrect. What about religions? Most religions have several-thousand-year track records.

F5a0ddffcf9ef5beca864050f090a790

(15515)

on June 08, 2012
at 04:46 PM

@BoneBroth - LOL. I hope you understand the difference between food/herbs/natural supplements and religion. You cannot digest religion. By the way, the roots of religion are totally physiological/biological. Read Robert Sapolsky. In addition: no, 5000 years cannot be wrong when it comes to eating something. In my culture we gather wild mushrooms and have been doing so for many centuries. We have a saying - all mushrooms are edible. But some of them you can eat only once. Same goes for herb. You cannot say it about religion :)

9af2c2c49634ea6caea14af9e1431b82

on June 09, 2012
at 05:33 PM

@Sol I understand that all medicines are developed from herbs and fora. The difference is that medicine are the ones that have been proven to work, rather than anecdotally.

9af2c2c49634ea6caea14af9e1431b82

on June 09, 2012
at 05:57 PM

@VB that is some bizarre nonsensical rambling

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on June 12, 2012
at 02:47 AM

@Cast Iron Brick - Medicine has been proven to work? Have you ever seen the side effects lists that come with pharmaceuticals? How about meds that are pulled from the market? That isn't "working." Do no harm is certainly not the mantra of big pharma.

5457372e78a910c00cd1dd579ecbdce3

(1230)

on June 20, 2012
at 02:49 AM

Oh and by the way if you think that 5000 cannot be wrong then why do you identify with Paleo, one of our core concepts is that we have been wrong for OVER 10,000!

F31d10b54b31428e189d9b771bf7b1d1

(1439)

on June 20, 2012
at 02:08 AM

I am not the least bit sorry. I gave you another -1. I have two lovely children because I did not blindly follow the doctors advice, which was a massive hysterectomy for endometriosis and went rather for homeopathy and traditional Chinese medicine. And I bet my children are healthier and sweeter and more wonderful than your children.

5457372e78a910c00cd1dd579ecbdce3

(1230)

on June 20, 2012
at 02:50 AM

Oh and by the way if you think that 5000 years cannot be wrong then why do you identify with Paleo, one of our core concepts is that we have been wrong for OVER 10,000!

5457372e78a910c00cd1dd579ecbdce3

(1230)

on June 20, 2012
at 02:15 AM

Well, I am giving Cast Iron a +1 for stating their opinion honestly and sticking to their guns when attacked by people with a different belief. Just because a person trusts fact over faith is no reason to attack them.

9af2c2c49634ea6caea14af9e1431b82

on June 25, 2012
at 03:36 PM

If the medicine is pulled from the market for not working, then it really isn't medicine, is it? Some of you are claiming that I blindly follow the advice of doctors. I don't. Doctors are practitioners, not scientists. @MathGirl72 1) I didn't say that everything the pharmaceutical industry does is correct. The Pharm. industry is a business that benefits from medical research, they're not one in the same. 2) Side effects don't imply that something isn't working. You know what does? A lack of scientific evidence showing a correlation of effect.

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