homeopathic

A debate involving medicine is never too far from the lips of the doubters, but it’s rare that you hear about it in the mainstream media, the news source of just about everyone. The vaccination debate, for one, has only ever been mentioned disparagingly, if at all, while the legitimate voices who believe they can be harmful are never heard at all. In a free society with free media, it should be unusual that we only ever hear one side of the debate, but there you are.

Homeopathic medicine is another issue that is seldom discussed as a serious topic. If you were to only read or watch the mainstream news channels, you would believe that homeopathic medicine is dangerous and/or ineffective. However, those voices again avoid the fact that that view isn’t as universal or obvious as they make it seem.

If nothing else, the conversation regarding homeopathic medicine must be fair. Given there are arguments for and against the medicine, the first question that should be asked is: is it helpful, dangerous, or neither?

But the second question should be: why was this conversation silenced in the first place?

Money Talks

As with so many other things in life, you can trace back the suppression of an idea or product to money. Money is big business in the medical world, most obviously in the United States but also in the UK (drugs are free for the patient, but they are paid for, after all) and around Europe. In the UK alone, almost half of the country’s adults take prescription drugs. That’s a huge number that will be very financially rewarding for the companies who produce the drugs.

In homeopathic treatment, there aren’t really any drugs to be sold. The products used all come from the earth, and though some companies attempt to patent plants from time to time, there’s no way one company could ever hold a monopoly on the drugs used in homeopathic medicine.

It’s a bit like a car that would run on water. Everybody knows that money can only be made from oil, so that’s what big businesses need cars to run on. You can’t regular water. Even regulation can’t help everything; the electric car would have taken off years ago if oil companies hadn’t done all they could to prevent that from happening.

History

A lot of what we hear now about homeopathic medicine was actually established in the 19th century. In the mid 1800’s, when homeopathic medicine was popular, an organisation in the United States, the American Medical Association, began an aggressive misinformation campaign against the use the of natural ingredients in drugs. Since then, this type of medicine has become “alternative”, meaning it’s much less likely to be accepted by those in control and the public at large. Unlike conventional drugs, which are accepted by the public without investigation, there is always an onus on homeopathic medicine to proof it works, consistently and for everybody.

Yet these rules never apply to drugs touted by large corporate drug companies. As this type of medicine has been positioned in opposition to the type of medicine we’re all used to (instead of as an extension of what we know alongside regular medicine), it makes it much more difficult for unbelievers to be convinced of its usefulness.

Keeping the Status Quo

As a society, the UK is pretty stuck in its ways. You only need to look at its attitudes towards legalising drugs, the distribution of wealth, and its blind adherence to the work/life ratio to see that the establishment has a pretty tight grip on what is accepted and what isn’t. Unlike other countries, things that challenge what we already know are usually met with a closed mind.

In that sense, it’s understandable that, so far, homeopathic treatment has been met with a healthy dose of skepticism, as practically everything that isn’t already established in the nation’s psyche is met with skepticism.

The UK needs to challenge the status quo if it’s going to improve, because at the moment it’s stuck in a cycle that minimises the happiness of its people. While discussing homeopathy medicine won’t cure everything (though it will cure something!), broadening our collective minds might just have a knock on effect that produces something great.

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One Comment

  1. 3
    “Homeopathic Medicine: Why isn’t it taken seriously?” Because it doesn’t work.

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