Posts

March 27, 2015

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12:00 PM | Regulating magic: The FDA considers revamping its regulation of homeopathic products
Homeopathy is quackery. It can’t be repeated often enough. Homeopathy is The One Quackery To Rule Them All. It is based on prescientific vitalism and principles so addled that one must wonder whether Samuel Hahnemann, the guy who dreamt up this medical system, was a fan of excess alcohol use, opium, marijuana, or some unholy…
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12:00 PM | Regulating magic: The FDA considers revamping its regulation of homeopathic products
Homeopathy is quackery. It can’t be repeated often enough. Homeopathy is The One Quackery To Rule Them All. It is based on prescientific vitalism and principles so addled that one must wonder whether Samuel Hahnemann, the guy who dreamt up this medical system, was a fan of excess alcohol use, opium, marijuana, or some unholy…

March 26, 2015

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11:00 AM | Should the FDA crack down on homeopathic “remedies”?
In the category of potentially dangerous complementary or alternative medicine, I can think of few products worse than ones claimed to relieve asthma, yet don’t actually contain any medicine. Yet these products, exist and are sold. Just over a year ago I described what might be the most irresponsible homeopathic treatment ever: A homeopathic asthma […]

March 19, 2015

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1:21 PM | Science Journalism and Homeopathy for Depression
I was recently pointed to an excellent article by an Irish journalist, Jonathan McCrea, about homeopathy. He discussed the topic on his radio show, and was highly critical of the practice. In response a homeopath wrote in a letter complaining that the shows was too negative, and McCrea wrote a nice reply pointing out the [...]

March 18, 2015

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11:55 AM | A brief bit of shameless self-promotion…The Prince of Wales edition
In an effort to expand the Gorski empire almost to the level of the Crislip empire and to try to make it to somwhere within two or three orders of magnitude of the Novella empire, I’ve published an article on Slate.com about Prince Charles’ visit to our fine country entitled Prince of Pseudoscience. Consider this […]
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11:00 AM | In which a certain box of blinky lights is published in Slate.com pontificating about Prince Charles
After a busy and late day yesterday, I didn’t have any gas left in the tank, if you know what I mean, to produce Insolence as epic as my posts about The Food Babe and cries of antivaccine activists of “Help, help! I’m being repressed!” Or maybe I should say that Orac’s power supply is…
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11:00 AM | In which a certain box of blinky lights is published in Slate.com pontificating about Prince Charles
After a busy and late day yesterday, I didn’t have any gas left in the tank, if you know what I mean, to produce Insolence as epic as my posts about The Food Babe and cries of antivaccine activists of “Help, help! I’m being repressed!” Or maybe I should say that Orac’s power supply is…

March 16, 2015

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9:54 PM | Calls to remove homeopathic remedies from pharmacies
Or: Homeopathic remedies in NZ pharmacies redux A little over five years ago I wrote suggesting New Zealand pharmacies should not be selling homeopathic remedies. Over the past few days there have been renewed calls for pharmacies to stop carrying these junk remedies following an Australian survey of the evidence. One call has come from [...]
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7:57 PM | The results are in – homeopathy is water, overpriced water
The Skeptical Raptor, stalking pseudoscience in the internet jungle. I intensely dislike all forms of medical quackery. Of course, my passionate, full-throated, defense of the scientific consensus on the safety and effectiveness of vaccines is fairly obvious. There are literally mountains of evidence that support my skepticism of the antivaccine beliefs. But there’s more junk medicine out there than the pseudoscience pushers running around … Continue reading The results are in […]
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2:01 AM | Public Health in the News – March 15, 2015
Global Read of the week! Vox has a collection of stories from people whose lives have been affected by Ebola, from family members of infected individuals to journalists covering the outbreak. Ebola has placed much stress on the healthcare systems in … Continue reading →

March 15, 2015

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9:49 PM | Bogus Children’s Remedy Invented by CBC Marketplace Approved by Health Canada
Like many Canadians who saw last week’s news article “Health Canada licensing of natural remedies ‘a joke,’ doctor says” in the lead-up to Friday’s Marketplace episode on CBC, I was very interested in learning the story behind it. Unlike many Canadians, I wasn’t at all shocked or surprised by the outcome. This blog (and others) […]

March 14, 2015

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1:49 AM | Watch: Journalists Get Health Canada License Number for Fake Remedy
If you have ever bought a natural health product approved by Health Canada, you must watch this 22-minute episode of CBC’s Marketplace. Do you have any idea how easy it is to get approval from Health Canada to manufacture and sell a natural health product? You will hear from me on this topic in a couple … Continue reading →

March 13, 2015

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11:30 AM | A naturopathic “apostate” confirms that naturopathy is a pseudoscientific belief system
Naturopathy is 80% quackery, 19% science-based modalities like diet, exercise, and lifestyle changes rebranded and infused with woo, and maybe 1% valid medicine. Yes, I know I’m probably being generous given that naturopathy is based on a vitalistic, prescientific worldview and originated in the 19th century German “natural living” movement, but I’m in a generous…
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11:30 AM | A naturopathic “apostate” confirms that naturopathy is a pseudoscientific belief system
Naturopathy is 80% quackery, 19% science-based modalities like diet, exercise, and lifestyle changes rebranded and infused with woo, and maybe 1% valid medicine. Yes, I know I’m probably being generous given that naturopathy is based on a vitalistic, prescientific worldview and originated in the 19th century German “natural living” movement, but I’m in a generous…
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11:00 AM | ND Confession, Part 1: Clinical training inside and out
Editors’ note: With this guest post, we welcome Britt Marie Hermes to the SBM blog. Her new blog NaturopathicDiaries.com was mentioned by Jann Bellamy last week. Hermes is a former naturopath who came to doubt naturopathy. Through her contact with Jann, she has agreed to contribute occasional blog posts to us. Her insights into the […]
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9:57 AM | Gimme some sugar: the people want homeopathy, but that doesn’t mean they should get it
The Australian National Health and Medical Research Council has weighed in where the Cochrane Collaboration has before, to conclude what we already knew – that homeopathy is a load of tosh. For homeopathy to work, many of the laws of science would have to be rewritten. It’s not a competition, but dare I say it, […]
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3:59 AM | Three Things You Really Should Read before The Weekend
Trying to define pornography, a frustrated U.S. Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart once famously declared “I know it when I see it”, and perhaps you can say the same thing about critical thinking. Greg Laden (at Science Blogs) wrote a great post today about Bjorn Lomborg, a “famous” climate denier, and a statement he made about sea level rise. Laden then goes on to show just how ridiculous the argument …

March 12, 2015

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9:41 AM | Homeopathy doesn't work
As if it needs restating, there is no evidence that homeopathy works.This fact has been reconfirmed by a recent report by the Australian National Health and Medical Research Council.Having reviewed the scientific evidence they found that:There was no reliable evidence from human research that homeopathy was effective for treating a range of health conditions.For some conditions, the placebo was more effective than homeopathy.People who choose homeopathy may put their health at risk if they […]

March 11, 2015

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7:11 PM | Australia officially states that homeopathy is baseless
The Australian National Health and Medical Research Council released a statement concluding that there is no good quality evidence to support the claim that homeopathy is effective in treating health conditions. Nothing new to see here, move on… Wait, can this be another nail in the coffin for homeopathy? Not needed. Homeopathy is not medicine but hopeful hype… Source: Doubtful News Related posts:Homeopathy to be outed as unethical in Australia? Australian […]
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12:07 PM | Another Review Finds Homeopathy Worthless
It is long past time to close the door on homeopathy. After thousands of studies, homeopaths are still unable to produce convincing evidence that homeopathy works for any indication. Multiple reviews of the evidence have come to this conclusion, and now we have one more to add to the pile – the Australian National Health […]
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7:00 AM | Mike Adams, a.k.a. the Health Ranger, a health scamster profiled
Anyone who’s read this blog knows my opinion of Mike Adams, the proprietor of the quack website known as NaturalNews.com. It is not favorable, to put it mildly. All you have to do to realize that is to type his name into the search box of this blog and see what comes up: Anger at…

March 09, 2015

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7:17 AM | Clinical trials of homeopathy versus “respect for science”
A few months ago, Steve Novella and I published an article in Trends in Molecular Medicine entitled “Clinical trials of integrative medicine: testing whether magic works?” It was our first foray together into publishing commentary about science-based medicine versus evidence-based medicine, using a topic that we’ve both written extensively about over the years on this […]

March 02, 2015

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11:00 AM | Aftermath: Will the “alternative health movement” learn anything from Jess Ainscough’s death?
It’s been a rather…interesting…weekend. Friday, I noted the death of Jess Ainscough, a.k.a. “The Wellness Warrior,” a young Australian woman who was unfortunate enough to develop epithelioid sarcoma, a rare cancer, at the age of 22. I’ve been blogging about her because after her doctors tried isolated limb perfusion with chemotherapy in an attempt to…
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