Homeopathy on the NHS

The recent news that homeopathy is to be removed from the NHS saving millions is very misleading. First of all it is not homeopathy it is homeopathy prescriptions, and secondly it will not save millions it will save around £90k. The media love a good headline – even if that means distorting the facts says Mani Norland, Principal of the School of Homeopathy, Stroud.

Removing homeopathy prescriptions from the NHS is short sighted, as you are taking medicine away from people that need it. If patients cannot get the homeopathy prescriptions they rely on then they may turn back to other more expensive drugs, costing the NHS far more money in the long run.

The reason given for removing homeopathy prescriptions from the NHS is a lack of evidence, but there is sound evidence of homeopathy’s effectiveness.

For example; by the end of 2014, 189 randomised controlled trials of homeopathy on 100 different medical conditions had been published in peer-reviewed journals. Of these, 104 were placebo-controlled and were therefore eligible for detailed review.

41% were positive (43 trials), finding that homeopathy was effective
5% were negative (5 trials), finding that homeopathy was ineffective
54% were inconclusive (50 trials).

In addition, there have been six meta-analyses of homeopathy (large scale overviews of all previous research).

One meta-analysis was negative, concluding that homeopathy had no effect beyond placebo. Five were positive suggesting that there was evidence of an effect beyond placebo, but that more high quality research would be needed to reach definitive conclusions. The most recent of these studies, published in 2014, found that homeopathic medicines, when prescribed during individualised treatment, are 1.5-2.0 times more likely to have a beneficial effect than placebo.

With regards to the effectiveness of conventional medicine, things are not as clear cut as many people may believe. Every six months, the British Medical Journal (BMJ) publishes the scientific clinical evidence for treatments currently available on the NHS. This study found that of 3,000 commonly used NHS treatments 50% are of unknown effectiveness and only 11% are proven to be beneficial. See chart.
20229369_10210014166410612_943085859902675528_n

SSRI anti-depressants, such as Prozac, are an example of such a treatment. These have now been confirmed as being no more effective than placebo in the treatment of mild and moderate depression, yet in 2006 the NHS spent around £150 million on them.

The BMJ data clearly shows that the NHS funds many treatments for which the evidence of effectiveness is unclear – see chart.

Medical research is a costly and involved undertaking that is generally funded by large pharmaceutical companies, charities, trusts and governments. Millions of pounds are involved in drug development, which is usually recouped through licensing the drugs. As homeopathic medicines are derived from natural sources, they cannot be patented; without the financial returns that patents help to provide, it is more difficult to find companies willing to invest in homeopathic research. This is unfortunate, given that homeopathy has the potential to be a safe, effective and inexpensive complement to conventional health care.

Funding for research into other Complementary and Alternative Medicines has been steadily growing with promising results. Professor George Lewith (professor of Health Research at the University of South Hampton) and others have received Government funding for their work.

The homeopathic profession encourages more research into homeopathy. However, the funding required for high quality research into homeopathy is not available in the UK at this time.

The Homeopathy Research Institute (HRI) is an international charity created to address the need for high quality scientific research in homeopathy. In collaboration with the Carstens Foundation, the HRI website provides a clinical research database that contains over 1015 studies, from randomised controlled trials to observational studies. It is the most comprehensive and academically rigorous database of its kind in the world.

In the current climate, where misinformation about homeopathy in the mainstream media is common, there is a need for clear communication of the facts about the evidence base for homeopathy. HRI therefore aims to provide decision-makers, academics, healthcare practitioners and patients with reliable, academically sound information about homeopathy research.

In 2013 and 2015 the HRI held international conferences dedicated to research in homeopathy. Both events had around 40 speakers, including clinicians, PhDs and Professors from around the world.

The campaign to remove homeopathy prescriptions from the NHS has been instigated by a small lobby group lead by a well-known ‘sceptic’ of homeopathy. This group made a legal challenge to the Department of Health. Why are policy makers and health professionals allowing themselves to be influenced by a biased agenda-led lobby group? This is not being driven by clinicians, patient choice, research or economics. With 15% of the UK population (27% of Germans, 40% of French) using homeopathy – why is the demand not for more research into homeopathy, rather than less provision?

Read more online and look up the references at: www.homeopathyawareness.com

Posted in Events | Comments Off on Homeopathy on the NHS

The Australian report

Homeopathy has been hitting the news in Australia this week.

Find out more about the NHMRC 2015 review on Homeopathy that’s making headlines once again – have a read of the latest from the Homeopathy Research Institute here.

The report has had an impact across Australia and has been featured several times on 7 News across the country.

To watch the footage see below.

Click here for 7 News Sydney.

Rachel Roberts, Chief Executive of the Homeopathy Research Institute states ‘It is interesting to hear the final sentence demonstrating the public position being taken by the pharmacists which is quite rightly in favour of patient choice “…pharmacists and their union say that that choice should be left with consumers”.

Click here for 7 News Brisbane.

Petrina Reichman, Secretary at the Australian Homeopathic Association says ‘Freedom of choice is crucial. These products would not have survived on the shelves of pharmacies for as long as they have if they weren’t effective, simple as that! Using complementary medicine also eases some of the emergency room burdens #yourhealthyourchoice

Screen Shot 2017-07-01 at 20.29.39

According to the Australian Homeopathic Association: ‘One million Australians use homeopathic products like those sold in chemists, as part of their daily healthcare’.

Your health, Your choice.

 

 

 

Posted in Events | Comments Off on The Australian report

Do you know of a dog with bone cancer? Canine Osteosarcoma Trial

A trial has started in January 2017 to see if homeopathy can help in the treatment of osteosarcoma in dogs. Osteosarcoma is a very serious disease and the average survival time until euthanasia is about two months, unless amputation and chemotherapy are employed, when it is about eleven months. This trial is open to those who decide, in consultation with their vet, that amputation is not what they want for their dog.

The owners and dog will need to attend the trial centre for at least one consultation which might last up to 90 minutes. The consultations and medicine will be free.

The homeopathic remedies will be chosen specifically for the dog, based on the history and clinical signs. The dog will remain under the care of the primary vet, and if euthanasia is required, as always that decision will be taken by the owners and the primary vet. This is to ensure no additional suffering will be undergone by any dog participating in the trial.

If a dog is to be entered for the trial, the owner and vet need to complete the forms which can be downloaded from the Britsih Association of Homeopathic Veterinary Surgeons’ website – bahvs.com.

If you have any questions or wish to enter your dog for the trial, contact the centre below.

Wiveliscombe Homeopathic Veterinary Surgery

Wiveliscombe

Taunton

Somerset

TA42JY

01984624999 osteosarcomatrial@yahoo.com

Geoff Johnson VetMB MRCVS RSHom VetFFHom PCH

Screen Shot 2017-06-14 at 14.39.20

Futher information on Geoff

Geoff Johnson qualified as a veterinary surgeon in 1987, and subsequently qualified in veterinary homeopathy in 1999. He is the principal of a busy homeopathic veterinary surgery in West Somerset. He lectures frequently at home and abroad. He wrote the curriculum and taught the Danish Homeopathic Veterinary Diploma, which has just graduated nine vets. He is one of the few UK vets who treats animals diagnosed with cancer using homeopathy. He lectured conventional vets on this subject at the SW and London Vet Shows in 2014.

In his Somerset practice, Geoff has gained considerable experience of treating dogs presenting with a range of canine cancers using homeopathy. He has observed some dogs entering permanent remission with the disappearance of the tumour and health restored. Some dogs were palliated with improved vigour, lessening of clinical symptoms, and life extended beyond conventional expectations. Some dogs appeared to gain no benefit at all. He has specifically observed improvements in some dogs presenting with osteosarcoma. He has treated five such cases using solely homeopathy. None of these dogs underwent amputation nor received chemotherapy. Two died years later of old age, one was euthanased after 22 months and two were euthanased within three months. Three of the five dogs exceeded the mean survival times of dogs which received amputation and chemotherapy, although the dogs treated received only pain relief for a short period. Two of these three dogs went into complete remission. These anecdotal results suggest treatment from a homeopath might offer an effective adjunct to current conventional treatment.

Posted in Consultation, Events, Health, Homeopath, Homeopathy, Research | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Do you know of a dog with bone cancer? Canine Osteosarcoma Trial

Promoting Awareness of the Evidence Base for Veterinary Medicine and Practice

From the Vets4InformedChoice website:

Vets4InformedChoice has been set up to raise awareness of the Evidence Base (or lack of) for many current Veterinary Practices, enabling animal owners and guardians to make considered responsible choices without pressure from the Veterinary Industry.

If you want to help please sign up to our Campaign, and we will send you updates and who to contact as events unfold: www.vets4informedchoice.org

Concerns over frequent and unneccesary Vaccination, Corporatisation of Veterinary Clinics, Pressure Selling of products and services etc. are widespread and growing.

Anyone who puts their head above the parapet within the profession risks their career, with just one example being the current campaign to ban Vets from prescribing Homeopathy, and to restrict Complementary and Alternative Medicines (CAM).

Vets utilising CAM as part of their clinical approach are great observers of matters, seeing and often fixing daily the failures of the conventional approach to therapy. They have been proven right many times, not least in exposing the lack of need for annual vaccines, confirmed by the mainstream industry’s own data and research. However, vaccination drives footfall, product sales and more, and many Vets base a significant part of marketing on the practice, so there is a reluctance to change and reduce their adminstration.

Vets using CAM now face a campaign within the profession to restrict and or ban their practices in the UK.

The Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons has announced a review of its position statement and guidance regarding Complementary and Alternative Medicines, but is it fit to do so? With Council Members openly supporting the campaign against CAM, no representation from those affected (the Vets and the owners of animals depending on them), and the Veterinary press publishing almost weekly denigrating attacks, it seems impossible that Vets using CAM can survive, and animals benefitting from such therapies will be denied care.

Our first campaign is to raise awareness of these issues, get the public to write to the Minister, their MPs, the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons and the Press to get their voices heard.

We will be adding articles and content soon to more pages

If you want to help please sign up to our Campaign, and we will send you updates and who to contact as events unfold: www.vets4informedchoice.org

18920132_1439739232760120_6265523413762129234_n

Posted in Consultation, Farming, Health, Homeopath, Homeopathy, Research | Tagged , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Promoting Awareness of the Evidence Base for Veterinary Medicine and Practice

Magic Pills, In Search of Evidence, a documentary film about homeopathy

Catching a few minutes out of Ananda More’s busy day, I managed to find out more about her soon to be premiered film and the motivation behind making it. Ananda, homeopath and first time filmmaker, has been making Magic Pills, In Search of Evidence, a documentary film about homeopathy for the last 6 years.

The world premiere is on the 3rd June at the Illuminate Film Festival (tickets available here: http://illuminatefilmfestival.com/magic-pills).

The film reveals aspects of homeopathy some would rather suppress and ignore as inconvenient truths. It shows several projects from around the world, looking at the science and the statistics, the scandals and also hears from individuals with different ways of thinking about the ongoing argument that homeopathy has been a part of for over 200 years.

The trailer for Magic Pills is here.

As a homeopath myself I can be known to rant about the treatment of homeopaths and homeopathy but making a film is a huge step forward into sharing our story with the world. What was the tipping point that inspired you to make it?

It was 7 or 8 years ago, we had a conference here in Toronto, and Dr Gustavo Bracho, from Cuba, presented at the conference. He was presenting a lecture on how the Cuban government had successfully stopped an epidemic using homeopathy. They weren’t homeopaths, they were pharmacists, biologists, and immunologists and the institute was used to creating vaccines for infectious diseases. Because of the circumstances there wasn’t enough time to produce enough vaccine for the population, needing to do something, they created a homeopathic remedy and used gave it to 2.3 million people.  The results were astounding and the epidemic was arrested. Dr. Bracho later explained to me that they were shocked that no medical journal was willing to publish their work, and they gave ridiculous excuses that had nothing to do with the validity of the research.

Had they done that with a conventional vaccine – and according to the WHO vaccines are to be used before an epidemic not during one, because a vaccine can take months to stimulate an immune response, and multiple doses, and it’s often hard logistically to get a vaccine to a population because there needs to be a cold chain to ensure a vaccine is safe and effective. Had they have managed to do something similar with conventional medicine the world would know about it, or at least the medical world would know about it and I felt the story had to get out there and…

And the leap to making the film?

It was going round in my mind I had to make a film about it. This story needed media exposure. I emailed Dr Bracho and said I felt I had to tell the story and he told me I could go and visit anytime and speak with him. I found out later he’s very camera shy, he’s had interviews in the past where things he’s said have been twisted and taken out of context. But he welcomed me, the people at the Finlay institute were all very kind.

Screen Shot 2017-05-23 at 06.25.54
What was the most important thing you had to learn to make the film?

I have a bachelors degree in drama so I suppose that helped, I don’t know, part of it was going out and doing it hands on. The first time I went to film I had a friend who was a camera man and filmmaker and editor, he’d recently graduated from film school and really kindly donated his time, I started to learn from him. Then I did some courses, learnt more about documentary filmmaking and started to learn about the equipment, techniques, and the language, even still I’m still learning – it doesn’t stop.

Producing the film is what’s the hardest part, finding the funding, the accounting and things are always changing, navigating distribution, finding people I should be working with and not working with, I ended up producing the whole thing by myself. That has had its challenges – it’s a fairly rare thing to do and also hard to be trusted as a new producer in the world to get funding when they don’t know what your film will be like, or if you even have it in you to finish. Now I’m navigating distribution, marketing, every day I’m learning something new – I feel like I’ve done a degree in filmmaking!

The film takes into account many views of homeopathy, and you interview people with very different opinions to your own – how was it for you interviewing people who had such a polar opposite view to yours about homeopathy?

I guess for me I came into this with a homeopathic mind, in the work we do we’re supposed to listen to a person’s perspective without judgement. I went into this open and willing to learn that homeopathy didn’t work. Is this really placebo and something that we’ve blinded ourselves to? I went into it really open to learning that it’s just a scam, a placebo.

I feel I went in with an open mind, but the things I saw were so awe inspiring that I became convinced that homeopathy does work and I came out a lot more confident in my practice. I am convinced of the efficacy of homeopathy as a practitioner and more able to accept people get better because of the work we’ve done together and accept that the homeopathy itself has made a significant difference for them.

It’s hard as a homeopath, I don’t know if anyone gets 100% results, I certainly don’t and when I’m not getting success on a case I take it very personally. I question my skills and question homeopathy itself. Making this film has stopped me from questioning homeopathy. If I’m not getting the results, maybe I’ll need to look again at the case with fresh eyes, or get a colleague to look at it with me and sometimes need to work harder to understand what’s going on.

Thank you for that. It’s really helpful I think for people to hear that you went in totally questioning it and open minded, prepared to learn that what you’ve studied hard for might all be not true. I think some of the issue, and people talk about it, is how we’ve got a lot invested in what we’re doing, maybe that you’ve studied for years and then at that stage of ‘it can’t not be true now’.

I think a lot about confirmation bias and about how in my life I’ve changed my mind so many times about what I’ve believed and encountered, so I’m always open to changing my mind. I mean, I believed homeopathy was a scam first when I first learned about it and I believed that for many years. When I was first in India and I was in the hospital and injured, all these people kept telling me to go use homeopathy and I laughed at them.

It really wasn’t about defending a position for me and I think I’ve shown that on a lot of levels. I thought I had a very scientific approach, and I think I’m still scientific in my approach. But before I was willing to believe what any expert told me and the studies that had been done, and it took a lot of looking and understanding in terms of how science works and about how biased science can be. Science is just a process and it’s open to interpretation and human interpretation, and we’re biased, we all have our own subjective approach.

Maybe there’s something about having ‘that experience’ yourself.  You talk in the film about how you took your first remedy and literally 15 minutes later you felt better. That experience changes somebody’s way of looking at the world. Lots of people haven’t have that experience, they’ve not tried homeopathy or witnessed that, in which case it does sound like a load of rubbish…

It’s easy to say to someone ‘Oh, your experience is placebo’, ‘it’s consultative effect’, ‘it’s just a coincidence’, but I think things change once you’ve gone through that experience, you’re more willing to consider that you were wrong about your beliefs.

So maybe we’re stuck in that place and maybe it’s about doing it enough times sometimes…

Maybe, but also… so my question was ‘are we as homeopaths stuck in that place too?’, and I was trying to be open. I really was questioning that, I wanted to know ‘am I perceiving everything differently?’, ‘am I approaching every study that’s negative with a certain perspective for a reason or are they really fraudulent and are these complaints that we have really genuine?’

We talked about the different mind-sets of people with their views of homeopathy and homeopaths. One thing I find interesting is how you use in the film different projects using quite different systems of homeopathy. Within the homeopathic community we can get a bit ‘you’re using that, I’m using that’. What are your thoughts about everything sitting alongside each other?

I think we, we haven’t had the time, the money, the research, to really learn everything there is to learn about homeopathy, and I think we’re just sitting on the tip of an iceberg, so I think everyone’s systems are very legitimate and I think we can learn a lot from each other and I think if we start getting dogmatic about how we practice or about how other people shouldn’t practice, we do everyone a disservice.

We do disservice to our patients because we’re not willing to look at other techniques that might help in a situation where we might be stuck, we do a disservice to our community, because we become fragmented – that’s what’s led to the state of homeopathy today. The Flexner report was successful in shutting down homeopathy because homeopaths weren’t organised and today homeopaths should…

…there isn’t enough unity and working together to really become a force.

If I could give you one wish to do with homeopathy what would it be?

My biggest goal with the film is to broaden the dialogue, and have I think we’ve had the media against us and a lot of the scientific world, not all the scientific world, I think a lot of the scientific world is open to what we’re doing and are sceptical in a genuine way, wanting to learn. But because I think there’s so much at stake, not just the pharmaceutical and the medical industry but – how we understand and perceive the world and how it works, it’s been hard to accept us. I think what I want, what I wish is for a more open minded genuinely sceptical society that is willing to invest in research and to openly to look at evidence and bring homeopathy in to the healthcare systems around the world.

What I feel that we’re suffering from right now is the power of what I’m calling the pseudo sceptics, because I don’t think they’re genuinely sceptical – they’ve decided that homeopathy can’t work and they’re going to do everything in their power to demonstrate that, even if it means not presenting the whole story, and they’re doing everything in their power to stop more research from happening as well – so why are they so scared of research? – they call it a waste of money, but most of the research being done in homeopathy is coming from dedicated funds to research in alternative medicine.

My question is, why are they scared of research? – what are they scared that we’re going to learn and find out? – is it going to flip their worlds around too much, is it like finding out the world is round?

You need to be able to say, ‘OK I believe this and what’s the evidence for and against my belief? Have I really understood what I experienced in my own life’, then you can shape an educated vision. I learned from Irene Schlingensiepen-Brysch a homeopath in Germany, we spoke a about scientific philosophy and this notion that you can never know the truth you can only approximate truth – and all we can do is try to do studies that try to falsify our theories and our hypothesis and find out what is false, but that finding out what is true, maybe that’s impossible.
There’s so much we don’t know and scientific opinion changes constantly and we’re always discovering new things that were right in front of our faces and we didn’t see, like, for example a lymphatic system in the brain, a drainage system for the brain – people always wondered how wastes were removed from our brain and they thought they didn’t get removed then just last year they discovered there is a drainage system for the brain. So, we’re always learning new things, always observing new things and we’re always missing things that are right in front of us because we don’t know how to see them yet.

For me the biggest thing is that science is a process, it isn’t an answer, it isn’t absolute knowledge, it’s a process of learning and observing and it’s not absolute.

I know there are lots of interested people asking me (so there must be many more wondering), when can we expect to see the film at screenings outside Canada and the United States?

It’s a bit of a process and all in the works and a there’s a hierarchy in how the film is released. The film festivals want to have the premieres and if it’s available elsewhere the film festivals are less inclined to show it. The reason I really wanted to go the film festival route, which isn’t a necessary route, but I felt it will legitimise the film and bring a broader audience to the film.

So, we have to be patient?

Yes, we have to be patient. The other thing is, I have wonderful people helping me, but I’m the main promoter on this and I haven’t been able to prepare all the marketing and get myself ready for the premiere – and at the same time be able to get my whole community screening program in place. The community screening approach is a very common way to distribute films that have the intention of having a social impact, as the lingo calls it, impact distribution. We want to make the film available for community screenings, and that means that anyone that wants to hold a screening can reach out to us, they do have to pay a licence for the screening but it’s pretty nominal and the idea is with that we send them a Blu Ray or a DCP.

They can show the film, they can show in theatres, in communities, they can show it in their living room, the idea also is to create the discussion, and try to figure out ways to create more change and broaden the perspective of the media, maybe lobby government, help to work towards changing policies around homeopathy and healthcare policies and towards alternative medicine in general.

I’m still trying to figure out what that’s going to look like, what the action plan is going to be and how everyone can contribute on that level as well. And then the film, once someone buys the licence, they can then turn around and charge tickets for people to come and see the film, hopefully use it as a fundraiser or cover all the expenses of showing the film.

OK, then we stay tuned and sign up to the newsletter?

Yes, and then that way you’ll find out when there’s a screening near you or how you can host a screening. We’re going to hopefully get it on video on demand platforms. Our goal not to reach a homeopathic audience –but to reach a broader audience of people. We need the homeopaths and we need the supporters of homeopathy to help propel the film to that audience as well. Sign up to the newsletter here.

Do you need funding to be doing all this?

It’s hard once the film is done – and we did it on a really really small budget, a lot of it came from my own pocket and I put 6 years of my life into it – but now there’s money required for developing the website, developing the materials, marketing is very expensive. Everything takes another bunch of money to get out there, the hope is that through licencing fees, more donations and hopefully some grants, we can put some money towards all of that that needs to be done. I wish I could give it all out of it out for free, but the expenses keep going up and up – it’s been very hard to raise money for this film outside of private investors – grant and funding bodies are very scared of films like this.

There’s a donate button on the website and it would be so appreciated if people would like to do so. As much as we all want to make everything available and be altruistic there’s expenses related to everything, like just having a DCP made is close to $1000. And unfortunately filmmaking and everything that goes around it is an expensive endeavour. Those of us producers who are making documentary films are dependent on the good will of everyone around us to make it happen.

Lastly, you cover some really hot topics in the film. In the UK we’re not allowed to talk about anything that might be able to treat cancer, we’ve just had Vaxxed here in the UK, and the vaccine discussion is heating up. What’s your feeling, I mean, I think they’re amazing stories to get out to the world, I feel like we’ve been suppressed for so long, the Cancer Act was in 1939 so since then we’ve been not allowed to say that anything can be helpful in dealing with cancer apart from maybe supporting it and you kind of go straight in there for the jugular – how is that?

I guess I put myself in a tricky situation, where some homeopathic organisations are scared to support the film, because it’s “going there”. They’re scared of the sceptic attack against them, of being associated with something that’s presenting what’s going on in the world. I mean, it’s not me saying I can treat cancer, it’s me showing what is possible in India, where homeopaths who are allowed to treat cancer, and are considered full-fledged members of the medical community, and receive an excellent medical education, I’m showing what they’re doing and what they’ve been capable of and the results they’ve been having, and so I don’t think I’m making any untoward claims of what I can do as a homeopath.

They’ve created a culture of fear around us being able to talk about what’s going on in the world and about us being able to show what is really possible. We always act out of fear on all of those things and I’m trying to break that here.

Thank you Ananda. It’s been a pleasure to chat and I can’t wait to hear more about the premiere and progress of Magic Pills, In Search of Evidence.

Em Colley MARH RHom BSc(Hons)

www.emmacolley.co.uk

 

 

Posted in Events, Health, Homeopath, Homeopathy, Research | Tagged , , , , , | Comments Off on Magic Pills, In Search of Evidence, a documentary film about homeopathy

Charity Commission Consultation ends 19th May – Please Act Now

The Charity Commission (CC) is currently conducting a public consultation on whether organisations promoting the use of complementary and alternative medicines (CAM) should have charitable status. They are seeking your views which you can supply by visiting:

https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/consultation-on-complementary-and-alternative-medicines

Homeopathic and other CAM organisations are making submissions but the more received from the pro-CAM public the better.  Please respond to the consultation and take action now!  If you feel uncomfortable answering all of the questions just answer a few, something submitted is better than nothing!

As you will see, the focus of this  consultation is on the evidence for the effectiveness of CAM therapies.  Your submission should be your own, however here are a few helpful points.

  • there are many types of evidence that should be considered when evaluating the effectiveness of a therapy. These include scientific studies, patient feedback and the clinical experience of  doctors  who  have trained in a CAM discipline.  Within Homeopathy there is considerable evidence which can be found (https://www.hri-research.org)
  • many conventional therapies and drugs  have inconclusive evidence or prove to be useful in only some cases, for example SSRIs (anti-depressants).  Inconsistent evidence is often the result  of the complexity of both  the medical  condition being treated and the therapy being used. It is not indicative of a therapy that doesn’t work
  • removing all therapies or interventions that  have inconsistent or inconclusive evidence would seriously limit the  public and the medical profession’s  ability to help treat and ease patients suffering.
  • all over the world there are doctors, nurses, midwives, vets  and other healthcare professional  who integrate  CAM therapies into their daily  practice because they see effectiveness. They would not use these therapies if they  did  not see their patients  benefitting from them.  For example in the UK, within the NHS hospital setting, outcome studies demonstrate effectiveness of homeopathy. (http://www.britishhomeopathic.org/evidence/results-from-the-homeopathic-hospitals/)
  • practitioners of many CAM therapies belong to registering bodies which expect their members to comply to the highest professional standards in regards to training and practice
  • In the UK the producers and suppliers of  CAM treatments (homeopathy, herbal medicine etc) are strictly regulated
  • as well as  providing valuable information to the  growing  number of people seeking to use CAM as part of their healthcare, CAM charities frequently fund treatment for those people, particularly the elderly and those on a low income, whose health has benefitted from these therapies but who cannot  afford them. This meets the charity’s criterion of  providing a public benefit.

You can also find out more of what you do to take action here at the Homeopathy Hub.

 Screen Shot 2017-05-09 at 13.19.20
Posted in Health, Homeopath, Homeopathy, Research | Tagged , , , , | Comments Off on Charity Commission Consultation ends 19th May – Please Act Now

School exams don’t have to be stressful…

Examination stress – fear of failing an exam, loss of focus, brain fog and much more can cause huge anxiety in students says homeopath Ulrike Holzer

Almost every student suffers stress to some degree before or during their exams. Stress can lead to a range of sypmtoms, as well as reducing the function of your immune system, making you more susceptible to colds, sore throats, upset tummies, headaches, to name a few.

BOYSTUDY  Coping with exam stress

  • Healthy diet: A balanced diet is vital for your child’s health, and can help them to feel well during exam periods.
    Avoid high-fat, high-sugar and high-caffeine foods and drinks (such as cola, sweets, chocolate, burgers and chips) as they cause hyperactivity, irritabability and mood swings. Make sure your teenager eats plenty of fresh fruits and veggies, and that they drink enough water to avoid dehydration headaches.
  • Encourage sleep: Good sleep will improve thinking and concentration. Most teenagers need between 8 and 10 hours’ sleep a night. Allow half an hour or so for kids to wind down between studying, watching TV or using a computer and going to bed to help them get a good night’s sleep. Cramming all night before an exam is usually a bad idea. Sleep will benefit your teenager far more than hours of panicky last-minute study.
  • Discuss their nerves: Remind your teenager that feeling nervous is normal. Nervousness is a natural reaction to exams. The key is to put these nerves to positive use. Being reminded of what they do know and the time they have put into study can help them feel confident.
  • Exercise: Exercise can help boost energy levels, clear the mind and relieve stress. Walking, cycling, swimming, football and dancing are all effective.

Natural remedies to help combat exam stress

A carefully chosen homeopathic remedy matched to the individual may help with the mental, emotional and physical symptoms of stress. by triggering the body’s ability to self-heal.

Here are a few homeopathic remedies which might be useful to help with exam stress:

  • Nux vomica: symptoms include hearburn and indigestion, irritability. Wakes at 3am and finds it hard to go back to sleep as having a rush of thoughts. Nux vom is particularly for last minute revisers who have been burning the candle at both ends.
  • Arsenicum: is good for people who feel very anxious, especially after midnight. They may panic and not be able to settle because they feel restless. A runny tummy before the exam often accompanies the symptoms.
  • Gelsemium: may help those suffering from performance nerves who may lack confidence and give up because they feel they may fail.
  • Argentum nitricum: is ideal for impulsive people who behave in an irritable way and then they regret it. They often hurry because they are worried about being late or missing deadlines. “What if …? is the motto of this teenager. Often runny stools from anticipation.
  • Lycopodium: is an excellent remedy for the type of person who is very industrious and tends to over-prepare. Their low self-esteem can show itself by causing them to miss letters and words when reading or speaking. The symptoms are often at their worst between 4pm and 8pm or if they have missed a meal.
  • Aethusia cynapium: is a wonderful remedy for brain fatigue from over-study. Inability to think and to fix attention. Examination fears. 
  • Anacardium: Nervous exhaustion from over-study and loss of memory from fright or mortification. Fear of examinations with lack of confidence. 

* Note: Please consult a professional homeopath if symptoms are serious and persist.

Other natural remedies to help with exam stress: There are certain Bach Flower remediesto help your child psychologically if they are having learning problems, such like Aspen, Mimilus, Chestnud Bud, Clematis and Larch.

Wishing you the best of luck for your exams!

Ulrike Holzer LSECH MSCH MARH

Registered Homeopath

Posted in Consultation, Education, Health, Homeopath, Homeopathy | Tagged , , , , , , | Comments Off on School exams don’t have to be stressful…

Just One Drop – A Review

I had the honour of attending the Premier of Just One Drop, directed by Laurel Chiten, who had flown in from America to attend, present and discuss this cutting edge film about homeopathy. Organised by 4H, Mani Norland, Principle of The School of Homeopathy and Cristal Sumner, Chief Executive of the British Homeopathic Association introduced the event and had both worked hard with others to ensure its high quality, on every level.  The ‘VIP’ audience had Royal, political and medical representation, the latter including homeopaths, teachers and medical doctors. The venue was a cinema in Soho, London, which hosts many innovative, pioneering films.

Just One Drop did not disappoint.  It is ground breaking in its content. Several homeopathic success stories are featured, including the poignant tale of a family dealing with a child with autism. Conventional medicine failed them as there was no improvement in his condition. They turned to homeopathy and saw a steady, significant, very moving improvement, which continues. Another case documents the journey of a man with MRSA and his totally inspiring healing journey. It was highlighted that homeopathy is one of the main systems of medicine in India as discussed by Divya Chhabra, one of India’s most influential and reputable doctors; the point being made here, is that it should be recognised as such throughout the world.  The mother of the autistic child beautifully stated that should homeopathy be more accepted and understood ‘it would change the world and medicine as we know it.’

The film goes on to introduce famous homeopaths, including Hahnemann himself and modern day ‘movers and shakers’ and teachers such as Jeremy Sherr, the Queens physician Dr Peter Fisher, Miranda Castro, Dr Massimo Mangliavori, Dr Roger Morrison, Hilery Dorrian and Francis Treuherz. The list here is long; many others were also interviewed and mentioned, all equally eminent! What was apparent amongst this diverse group of highly qualified people, was their total conviction in homeopathy as a valuable system of medicine. This is based on years of experience, and positive results and frankly, in the changing of peoples lives.  It is also worth pointing out that in the few here I have named, over 50 % are also medical doctors with stringent, allopathic training; what is clearly demonstrated, is that they have chosen to recognise and integrate homeopathy into their practice, or in many cases, use it exclusively as their preferred method of treatment. Why would they do this when they are highly qualified in both systems of medicine, should homeopathy not work? Food for thought for those that have difficulty in understanding the complexities involved in homeopathic medicine; but this is possibly all you need to know. The vitriol and the vindictiveness of the sceptics discussed throughout is misplaced, ignorant and without foundation, given the evidence set out so magnificently and clearly in this film.

In keeping with the theme of negative representation and distortion of evidence, Rachel Roberts, CEO of Homeopathy Research Institute, gives an in depth analysis of the Australian report, which stated that no health conditions could be helped by homeopathy.  This was in fact a gross misrepresentation as Rachel explains in the video linked here, the conclusion being that there was misfeasance, and it has been asked that the report to be rescinded.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QvF8KxbCXzA

Lynn McTaggart, editor of ‘What Doctors Don’t Tell You (who I had the pleasure of meeting and talking with) also alludes to the ‘suppressed evidence’ in this report. You can read more of her findings in her article ‘Of Dirty Medicine and Double standards’ accessible at this link: http://lynnemctaggart.com/of-dirty-medicine-and-double-standards/

David Tredinnick MP, stood up and wholeheartedly and unreservedly stated his conviction in homeopathy, asserting that ‘if we can only get a few trials accepted, the dam will burst.’  This together with Dr Peter Fishers erudite insights added gravitas to an already distinguished, historic event.

Homeopathy will always be controversial due to the fact its roots are embedded in a fundamentally different paradigm which is complex, and requires intense study in order understand its philosophy, practice and mechanism of action. Many people will continue to be sceptical in their approach and will go to any lengths (including deceit and fraudulent behaviour) to deny its credibility, as demonstrated in the reports above. The intention of the film is ‘to pave the way for integration between conventional medicine and homeopathy.’  In my opinion, ‘Just One Drop’ should be shown widely in every community, to educate those who are not familiar with the depth of the healing possible. It is positively inspirational and deserves great acclaim and worldwide recognition. And one thing is for sure, millions of people, despite the detractors, continue to use it. My conclusion?  Homeopathy is clearly here to stay and flourish, even more so once the contents of this film have been absorbed and distributed throughout the world. So please share; it is important to inform and educate at the highest level, with the real facts.

Should you wish to see the film and host a screening, please follow the link here : http://www.justonedropfilm.com/host-a-screening/

Gill Graham

www.consultanthomeopath.com

JOD jpeg

 

 

 

Posted in Doctor, Education, Events, Hahnemann, Healing, Health, History, Homeopath, Homeopathy, Research | Tagged , , , , , , | Comments Off on Just One Drop – A Review

Put a spring in your step with homeopathy

Here in the UK it’s the first official day of spring and it’s been wonderful over the past few weeks to see the daffodils and crocuses popping up on patches of land. In the woods, the new growth is coming through and it all made me think of our health. How we as homeopaths see that people regain health, and indeed even hope of recovery as they start to feel better. And also how it may have felt like winter for many with no hope or joy as chronic illness continued.

Working with people as a homeopath we often hear this and fortunately homeopathy can help many to start to feel better. The Bristol Homeopathic Hospital undertook one of the most comprehensive patient outcome surveys which was an analysis of over 23,000 outpatient consultations from November 1997 to October 2003. This represented over 6,500 individual patients whose outcome was recorded at follow-up. More than 70% of these follow-up patients recorded clinical improvement following homeopathic treatment.

Interestingly, many of the patients in the analysis had previously received mainstream medical intervention at the secondary care level and had either failed to respond satisfactorily or had been unable to tolerate the medication prescribed.

The conclusion here was that Homeopathy therefore may achieve positive clinical outcomes in certain conditions that have not yet been proven in RCTs, such as Crohn’s disease, depression, eczema, headache, and menopausal syndrome. Full details are given in the original article.

On the website here we’ve testimonials from people who’ve experienced help towards health through the use of homeopathy – and if you’re someone who has also had benefit from homeopathic treatment then feel free to share your story here.

typorama

Posted in Consultation, Education, Health, Homeopath, Homeopathy | Tagged , , , , , | Comments Off on Put a spring in your step with homeopathy

Homeopathy for Heartburn

What is heartburn?

Despite its name, heartburn doesn’t affect the heart. Heartburn is a burning sensation in the back of the throat and/or in the upper chest, along with a sour or bitter taste in the throat and mouth. It usually occurs after eating a big meal or while lying down. The feeling can last for a few minutes or a few hours. Heartburn is caused by excessive flow of gastric contents back into the oesophagus. The acidic gastric contents, when present in large amounts, irritate the oesophagus and cause the symptoms of heartburn. Medical conditions, such like hiatus hernia, gastritis, peptic ulcers etc can also cause a burning sensation in the upper digestive tract. Pregnancy, stress and certain foods can also make heartburn worse. Some medical drugs, such like NSAIDs (Ibuprofen, Aspirin etc), high blood pressure tablets ( esp. Calcium antagonists), osteoporosis drugs, anti-anxiety drugs (Diazepam, Lorazepam), tricyclic antidepressants (i.e. Amitriptyline) and antibiotics can cause heartburn. Foods that trigger heartburn: black pepper, garlic, raw onions, tomatoes & spicy foods, chocolate, citrus fruits & products, alcohol, coffee and caffeinated drinks, and carbonated drinks.

Conventional treatment include drugs that either neutralise stomach acid, reduce acid production or medication that block acid production. Needless to say that these chemical drugs often carry unwanted side-effects that often call for drugs to counter-act these side-effects. However, the correct homeopathic remedy may help to ease the symptoms of heartburn in a ‘first aid way’. Constitutional treatment is essential as it addresses the causes of heartburn, especially taking psychological factors into consideration.

Here are some homeopathic remedies that may help to ease symptoms of heartburn:

Arsenicum album: Heartburn with burning pains felt in the stomach with food backing up into the oesophagus. Belching and gulping up of acid and bitter substances which seem to excoriate the throat. Burning pains all the way up to the throat. Severe, watery, burning, yellow diarrhoea can occur. Many of the symptoms will feel better while drinking hot drinks like tea, or by applying hot applications, like a heating pad.  They may be thirsty for small, frequent sips of cold water. Their mental state is anxious, restless and fearful of being left alone.

Carbo vegetabilis: The individual needing Carbo veg has heartburn characterised by belching, bloating, heaviness in the stomach and chest and distress from eating simple, plain foods. The person may have an aversion to foods like meats, milk and fats. A very common characteristic of the individual needing this remedy is that they have a great desire for fresh air or for being fanned during attacks. The heartburn creates burning pains extending from the stomach toward the back along spine and the patient experiences temporary relief from these symptoms during belching. The belching leaves a rancid, sour or putrid taste in the mouth.

Magnesia carbonica: The person needing this remedy has a sensation of emptiness in the stomach. Sour eructations and heartburn from cabbage, potatoes, greasy food or milk. Sour belching and vomiting of bitter matter. Eructations can taste like rotten eggs. There is a craving for acidic or sour drinks.

Natrum phosphoricum: The keynote of this Schuessler salt is excess of acidity. There is an emptiness in the stomach and abdomen, even in the chest, worse after eating. Heaviness and pressure in epigastrium. Hyper-acidity of the stomach causes heartburn. Sour belching often followed by vomiting of sour matter. Weak mental state. The person may appear confused.  

Nux vomica:  Nux vomica is indicated when the heartburn comes from overeating, too much alcohol or other stimulants such like coffee. The abdomen is bloated and there is a heavy sensation in the stomach. Sour and bitter taste in throat from heartburn. There can be nausea and vomiting with much retching. Their mental state is anxious and irritable. 

Phosphorus: The person needing Phosphorus for heartburn will complain about burning pains felt in the abdomen, bloating and a feeling of fullness accompanied by great thirst for icy cold drinks, which are vomited back up shortly after becoming warm in the stomach. Belching and vomiting of undigested food are characteristic of the person needing Phosphorus. The person is mild-mannered, and seeks company and affection.

Pulsatilla: The heartburn comes on at different times of the day and after eating various kinds of foods, especially rich, greasy ones. Thirstless. Burps have a sour, bitter taste. Stomach and abdomen feel empty, with gurgling and rumbling & pressing pains. All symptoms are better in the fresh air. The individual’s personality is sweet, gentle, whiny and tearful. They are afraid of being alone and desire sympathy.

Sulphur: There is a burning and heavy sensation in the stomach with great acidity. There is often a history of dyspepsia. The over-acidity in the stomach comes from overeating and over-drinking. There is much rumbling and gurgling in the abdomen. The person is often absent-minded, which is often due to an over-active mind.

Diet 

Avoid foods that make heartburn worse, such like chocolate, tomatoes, spicy food, coffee and carbonated drinks, alcohol, citrus fruits etc. Include low acid foods in your meals, such like melons and bananas, oatmeal, wholegrain bread, brown rice , couscous, green veggies (broccoli, asparagus, green beans, celery, and cauliflower are all low in acid), potatoes and other root veggies (but no onions!), and fish (grilled, poached and baked, just not fried). You can’t tell how acidic a food is by looking at it. It’s not on the nutrition label either. But you can research a food’s pH, which is a score of its acid content. The lower the pH number, the higher the acid — lemon juice has a pH of 2.0. If you aim for foods with a pH of 5 or above, you may have fewer symptoms. You can find the pH level of foods on some websites and in low-acid diet cookbooks.

Disclaimer: This article is for educational purposes only and not intended to replace the advice of your physician or health care provider. First aid situations may require medical or hospital care. Do not use this article as a means to diagnose a health condition. Speak to your doctor if you think that your condition may be serious, before discontinuing any medication that has been prescribed for you, or before starting any new treatment.

If you cannot decide which homeopathic remedy to select or if your heartburn lingers then please book an appointment for a full consultation with a professional homeopath.

Ulrike Holzer  LSECH MSCH MARH (Registered Homeopath)Screen Shot 2017-03-14 at 10.24.27

Posted in Consultation, Education, Healing, Health, Homeopath, Homeopathy | Tagged , , , , , | Comments Off on Homeopathy for Heartburn