Tagged With homeopathy

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This is the season when we send our kids off to school with shiny new backpacks, and every year, they bring home the same thing: The first round of back-to-school colds. In our house, with a two-year-old intent on drooling on everyone he touches and a six-year-old still perfecting her personal hygiene practices, pathogens are passed out like hugs, and it's only a matter of time before the whole family is sick.

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Echinacea is not a homeopathic remedy. Neither are essential oils, neti pots or visits to the chiropractor. If you have a vague sense that homeopathy is outside the mainstream and that I'm about to pooh-pooh it, you're right, but the weirdness goes farther than most people realise.

Predicting the future is near impossible -- but that doesn‘t stop us all from having a red hot go. Human beings have been predicting the future since the beginning of history and the results range from the hilarious to the downright uncanny.

One thing all future predictions have in common: they‘re rooted in our current understanding of how the world works. It‘s difficult to escape that mindset. We have no idea how technology will evolve, so our ideas are connected to the technology of today.

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When you or your child is sick and all you care about is relief, you'll perk up at any promise a pill bottle makes. But some of those packages hold no medicine at all, just homeopathic "remedies." Australians spend around $1.2 billion per year on non-prescription vitamins, herbal remedies and natural medicines. Their makers are legally allowed to lie to you and say these products can improve your health or provide relief to ailments, even though they absolutely definitely do not.

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Last year, the Australian National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) released a draft paper that suggested there was zero evidence that homeopathy -- which improbably claims that massively diluted substances are an effective treatment for practically anything -- had any scientific credibility whatsoever. The final paper is out, and it reaffirms that conclusion: Homeopathy is unproven, dangerous bollocks.