$2.5 billion spent, no alternative cures found

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Tigana Tigana's picture

I was once a supporter of the system. Many of us are, and remain really good patients - until it nearly kills us.

Tigana Tigana's picture

edit...

There's a tasty Dandelion Coffee recipe here -

http://www.deliciousbynature.com/?p=390

and information on marijuana's medicinal and curative effects on cancer at a Canadian site, Phoenix Tears.

http://www.phoenixtears.ca/

ennir

Thanks jas, I was confused as to whether or not my statement could be taken as a personal attack although I thought it was pretty clearly not and I intended none but I was not confused by M.Spector and his personal attack.  LOL 

As Tigana, I too was a supporter of the system and ten years ago might have argued the other side but the reality is I got really sick and the system did not only not help me but it actually did harm to me.  I have found my way back to health through alternatives and because of that I thoroughly support the right of people to make their own choices.

I think the studies done that have shown the effectiveness of placebos gives support to homeopathy, after all if nothing can have a positive effect perhaps traces may too.

Frustrated Mess Frustrated Mess's picture

Unionist wrote:

Frustrated Mess wrote:

Really? So all those big pharmaceutical companies are racing around the world attempting to patent plants with medicinal qualities because they really don't have the best interests of their investors at heart? Huh.

Not sure I made my point clearly. Herbalism may well have healing qualities. Homeopathy only has money-making qualities.

 

Well thank you for clearing that up.

Here is Wikipedia:

Herbalism is a traditional medicinal or folk medicine practice based on the use of plants and plant extracts. Herbalism is also known as botanical medicine, medical herbalism, herbal medicine, herbology, and phytotherapy. The scope of herbal medicine is sometimes extended to include fungal and bee products, as well as minerals, shells and certain animal parts[1].

Homeopathy:

Homeopathy (also spelled Homoeopathy or Homœopathy) is a form of alternative medicine, first proposed by German physician Samuel Hahnemann in 1796, that treats patients with heavily diluted preparations which are thought to cause effects similar to the symptoms presented. Homeopathic remedies are prepared by serial dilution with shaking by forceful striking, which homeopaths term "succussion," after each dilution under the assumption that this increases the effect of the treatment. Homeopaths call this process "potentization". Dilution often continues until none of the original substance remains.[1]

So is the study cited in the OP investigating homeopathy or herbalism?

Frustrated Mess Frustrated Mess's picture

Returning to the OP, what cures has conventional medicince developed for the common cold, memory loss, arthritis, menopausal hot flashes, prostate problems, and cancer? I'm really curious becuase I'm certain they've spent 10s of billions of the last few decades and my wife is particularly interested in the cure for hot flashes.

Tigana Tigana's picture

I dislike blind faith. Woo has its own dangers, but corporate interests are dictating what shall be policy and what shall be taught at Canadian universities -

http://www.thespec.com/specialsections/section/BlindFaith/263482

That scares me. 

Update: Whatever happened to the physician's vow - the Primum - "First do no harm"?

 

 

Tigana Tigana's picture

Many modern medicines are derived from herbs and the traditional knowledge of herbalists. For example, digitalis was developed from naturally occurring substances in foxglove. A herbal antidepressant comes from St. John's Wort. The loss of ran forest plant species to industry/corporations is not just a loss of terrain - it's a loss of healing herbs. 

Re hot flashes - Maybe what is needed is not what is being offered. See 

http://www.alternativementalhealth.com/articles/estogen.htm

 

Unionist

Frustrated Mess wrote:

So is the study cited in the OP investigating homeopathy or herbalism?

It appears fairly clear that the study is of folk or herbal medicines of various kinds, including acupuncture. Homeopathy is not mentioned - unsurprisingly, given that homeopathic dilutions leave (on average) zero molecules of the alleged active substance by the time they're done. The other therapies, as I indicated, actually have a scientific possibility of being effective, so they're worth investigating. Investigation of homeopathy is best left to those who claim it offers benefits. No such studies appear to exist, unfortunately.

 

Frustrated Mess Frustrated Mess's picture

I find it fascinating that we can go through life and and develop such certainties in areas of so much mystery.

Unionist

Frustrated Mess wrote:

I find it fascinating that we can go through life and and develop such certainties in areas of so much mystery.

 

"Mystery" would be studies showing homeopathy works, while no one yet can fathom how it works.

"Mystery" is real phenomena which human beings examine with a view to explaining and replicating.

With homeopathy, we're not at the stage of "mystery" yet.

With chiropractic, we've reached the stage of inquisition - lawsuits against those who dare to write that the emperor is naked.

 

Frustrated Mess Frustrated Mess's picture

I am speaking of herbal remedies. I know nothing at all about homeopathy. But I'm also speaking about reductionist approaches to health, food, and plants.

Did you read Michael Pollan's In Defense of Food? I would highly recommend it. He isn't very positive on supplements. What I mean by mystery is that we know very, very little about the natural chemicals we take for granted and how they act and interact within the environment and our bodies. The reductionist approach, as practised by both conventional health and the health food industry, is to say here is a plant. It's medicinal qualitiy is "A". This is provided by chemical "B". Extract it, test it, sell it as supplements. But what if chemial "B" is only effective when delivered by ingesting the actual plant? Does the combination of plant chemicals make a difference? Or is it maybe the way the chemical is released by the digestive process acting on the plant? For the most part, these are things we don't have a clue about and yet we can say with absolute certainty things we don't know to be certainly true.

Did you read the report on how organic foods are no more nutritous than conventionally grown foods? An analysis of that study:

Quote:

“Imagine we take a group of 100 20-year-old males and ask them to run one hundred metres. We measure the time taken. Then we ask 100 20-year-old females. On average, the males will be faster. But some females will be faster than some males. So someone looking at the data cannot be absolutely certain that males are, on average, faster than females. But as we increase the number of runners, we are increasingly sure that the average male is genuinely faster than the average female and we are more confident about quantifying the underlying difference. We can do this both because we have a larger number of times but also because we can better measure the underlying variability between males and between females.

In the food study, cutting out the dodgy data cut the number of data points by 70% (so, as it were, we had fewer males and fewer females). And the apparent reliability of the data fell. But, nevertheless, the organic food (the males) was on average significantly better than the conventional food (the females) even though some results (5 out of 48 trials) suggested that conventional food had measurably more flavonoids than organic equivalents.

The result for flavonoids is replicated with the nutrient beta carotene. Beta carotene levels were over 50% higher in the average study, falling to 21% once the slightly dubious studies were extracted. In fact, organic food contains – on average – a higher percentage in 18 out of 23 specific nutrients. It is simply untrue to say, as the FSA does, that organic food contains ‘no difference’ in nutritional content. Organic foodstuffs studied in this work actually contained measurably more nutrients. But the statistical techniques used showed a relatively high probability that this was simply a matter of chance. Few nutrients showed the required 95% confidence level.”

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2009/aug/13/food-standards-agency-...

I'm not arguing any particular plant is a cure for any particular ailment. I would argue there are a great many plants that could treat and allevieate the symptoms of a great many ailments. And treat and relieve would also be the best conventional medicine can do for a great many ailments. My father died from a wasting disease for which conventional medicine had no answers. I sometime wish my father wasn't so conventional because I'm certain a little pot could have improved his quality of life in those closing months.

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

Tigana wrote:

A herbal antidepressant comes from St. John's Wort.

The National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, which, as the OP notes, is spending $2.5 billion researching so-called "alternative medicine", [url=http://nccam.nih.gov/health/stjohnswort/ataglance.htm]says[/url], "St. John's wort is not a proven therapy for depression. If depression is not adequately treated, it can become severe. Anyone who may have depression should see a health care provider. There are effective proven therapies available."

 

Polly B Polly B's picture

2.5 billion spent....no alternative cures found.  I wonder how many billion have been spent on not finding not alternative cures?  Lets throw some big pharma budget figures out maybe?

 

This thread is a really good example of why I don't post here anymore.  Christ on a stick.  For every person I know who has been "cured" by western-standard-modern-scientific-etc medicine, I can name six who were harmed.  Okay, by harmed I probably mean that they were just given something to treat symptoms in the interim, while the disease that was going to kill them went ahead and did what it was going to do but maybe slower and maybe with less pain.  But it still killed them while they sat hoping to be cured and expecting a fekking miracle.

 

And while we sit slackjawed in awe of science and pharmaceuticals and hocus pocus doctor-magic, we are marching steadily on poisoning our planet and our food and our air and wondering why the fuck we keep getting so sick. 

 

But ya, lets make sure no-one chooses not to be sawed open and radiated and poisoned, lets make sure we follow the doctors orders, and by all means lets make sure that any one who thinks outside the box about their own personal health is completely ridiculed for being an uninformed crazy hippy.

 

Gaaaaaa.

 

 

 

 

ennir

Thank you Polly B, I loved your post.  I feel very much that way.

G. Muffin

Tigana wrote:
A herbal antidepressant comes from St. John's Wort.

St. John's Wort, like SSRIs, can't beat placebo in clinical trials.  The difference, of course, is that St. John's Wort doesn't have a black box warning for suicide nor does it induce mania.  So if I had to choose between the two, I'd definitely choose St. John's Wort. 

Diogenes Diogenes's picture

Does drinking American beer qualify as homeopathy therapy?

Fidel

Tigana wrote:

Many modern medicines are derived from herbs and the traditional knowledge of herbalists. For example, digitalis was developed from naturally occurring substances in foxglove. A herbal antidepressant comes from St. John's Wort. The loss of ran forest plant species to industry/corporations is not just a loss of terrain - it's a loss of healing herbs. 

Re hot flashes - Maybe what is needed is not what is being offered. See 

http://www.alternativementalhealth.com/articles/estogen.htm  

The best selling cancer drug in history, Taxol, is derived from Yew tree bark. US taxpayers developed the drug, from basic research through to clinical trials. And then it was handed off to Bristol Meyers for profiteering. What it really was was a massive corporate welfare handout to friends of the two old line parties in the US at the time. Taxpayers typically pay for highest risk basic research, and then private enterprise collects the lowest hanging fruit for themselves. That's the way actual capitalism usually works in the US, and our guys in Ottawa play along, too.

Tigana Tigana's picture

Fidel wrote,

"The best selling cancer drug in history, Taxol, is derived from Yew tree bark. US taxpayers developed the drug, from basic research through to clinical trials. And then it was handed off to Bristol Meyers for profiteering. What it really was was a massive corporate welfare handout to friends of the two old line parties in the US at the time. Taxpayers typically pay for highest risk basic research, and then private enterprise collects the lowest hanging fruit for themselves. That's the way actual capitalism usually works in the US, and our guys in Ottawa play along, too."

And the universities play along as well. In exchange for pharma funding, our universities hand over their research work for stockholderrs' corporate profit forever after. Universities also actively recruit students and community members at sites like Craigslist for pharma clinical trial studies. And if something goes wrong after Joe or Jane College take an experimental drug, pharma walks away and the province pays their medical and disability bills, possibly for life. 

Tigana Tigana's picture

M. Spector wrote:

Tigana wrote:

A herbal antidepressant comes from St. John's Wort.

The National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, which, as the OP notes, is spending $2.5 billion researching so-called "alternative medicine", [url=http://nccam.nih.gov/health/stjohnswort/ataglance.htm]says[/url], "St. John's wort is not a proven therapy for depression. If depression is not adequately treated, it can become severe. Anyone who may have depression should see a health care provider. There are effective proven therapies available."

Designed on a  weak and dishonest theory of neurochemistry, at best antidepressants are barely more effective than placebos - or perhaps water: 

http://www.cpa.ca/cpasite/userfiles/Documents/Effectiveness%20of%20antid...

And at worst...

http://www.ssristories.com/

 

Thanks, M. Spector, for your mention of the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine. I had not noticed that the source of the money for the funding Snuckles mentioned at the beginning of this thread was the flawed and dishonest National Institute of Health. 

http://www.rabble.ca/comment/1026773/Critics-find-NHSs-£12m

The NIH is a lapdog for corporate protection - like America's CDC and FDA. They in turn lead Health Canada around by the nose. Health Canada is supposed to protect Canadians, but now refers to big pharma as "our client".

http://www.whp-apsf.ca/en/documents/no_harm.html

Remember Percy Schmeiser and the seeds?

http://www.percyschmeiser.com/

Remember bovine growth hormone in milk?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bovine_somatotropin

Very good for Monsanto; not so healthy for us. 

(edit complete)

 

 

 

Maysie Maysie's picture

Closing for length.

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