The content of this posting is perhaps going to come across as satire, but it’s not. It brings to you a list of homeopathy remedies that are quite real. I’ll even include a link to the supplier so that you can check their list yourself and verify it all. I should perhaps also make something very very transparent up front – Homeopathy is pseudoscientific nonsense, there is no credible evidence that it works.
The Wikipedia page that describes the evidence and efficacy of homeopathy lays it all out very clearly …
A review conducted in 2010 of all the pertinent studies of “best evidence” produced by the Cochrane Collaboration concluded that “the most reliable evidence – that produced by Cochrane reviews – fails to demonstrate that homeopathic medicines have effects beyond placebo.”
Before we get into my list of truly bizarre homeopathic remedies, I better explain what a homeopathic remedy actually claims to be.
What is Homeopathy?
If you are not familiar with the topic of Homeopathy, then it is well worth understanding what it actually claims to be. Some might view it as a variation of herbal medicine, but that is simply not the case.
The idea, dreamed up by Samuel Hahnemann in 1796, is that like cures like. For example, if you have trouble sleeping, then your Homeopathy remedy will probably have been made using caffeine, a substance that causes you to stay away. It is basically an extremely diluted version of the substance that supposedly caused the complaint, hence if “like cures like” it will fix you. This however is dilution on a logarithmic scale. A typical remedy can be as “potent” as 30C or might even be 100C.
What does that mean?
Take 1 part of the raw ingredient, add 100 parts of water, and then vigorously shake by 10 hard strikes against an elastic body. This is called “succussion”. This is 1C. Now take 1 part of the 1C and add 100 parts of water, do the same and you have 2C. Keep repeating until you get to 30C.
The claim is that a solution that is more dilute is described as having a higher potency, and so these more dilute substances are considered by homeopaths to be stronger and deeper-acting remedies.
To help you wrap your head around this, a 12C solution is equivalent to a “pinch of salt in both the North and South Atlantic Oceans”. 13C is one drop of that diluted in all the water on the planet.
In other words, by the time you get to 30C what you are given contains no active ingredients at all. What is truly bizarre is that this remedy is supposed to be magically infused with the property of the ingredient that you started with and to have somehow “forgotten” all about anything and everything else that ever came into contact with it. (Hint: the secret of plumbing is that it’s not all water).
If you are now beginning to think, “But that’s absurd” then you get it, because this is indeed pseudoscientific nonsense and all you actually have is a placebo. This is not about some herbal remedy that just might do something, instead it is magical thinking.
Am I being unfair and biased?
Once upon a time, the UK had multiple Homeopathy hospital. Oh wait, it still does … really. Don’t let that fool you, the UK medical establishment know that it is quackery and has clearly articulated that position …
- The BMA has described homeopathy as ‘witchcraft’
- The UK government’s chief scientific adviser, Sir Mark Walport, has dismissed it as ‘nonsense’
- The UK’s Chief Medical Officer Dame Sally Davies has labelled it ‘rubbish.’
- The UK National Health Service banned homeopathic treatments from being funded. People are still free to use it, they just don’t get it for free anymore.
OK, that was all background. On to the main act now.
Top 5 weirdest Homeopathy remedy categories
Freemans Homeopathic online Pharmacy will sell you Homeopathic remedies. They are based in Glasgow in the UK and have been in business for more than 60 years. They claim …
All our remedies are prepared in strict accordance with the British and German Homeopathic Pharmacopoeias under Specials Manufacturing Licence from the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Authority (formerly the Medicines Control Agency) of the UK Government. We have held this licence since 1973 and are regularly inspected to ensure the highest standards of Good Manufacturing Practice and Quality Control are employed at all times.
Hold that thought and prepare to have your mind blown.
From their A to Z of remedies, which you can find here, I found the following. The categories are mine, I simply picked items from their A to Z list.
Category 1) Weird Animals
- Anax Imperator (Dragonfly) … Which part of the dragonfly, the wings or the body?
- Androctonus amurreuxi (Scorpion)
- Acarus Siro (storage mite)
- Boar (Wild Boar, Sus Scrofa)
- Boa Constrictor (Adeps Boae)
- Black Browed Albatross (Diomedea Melanophris)
- Bombyx Mori (Silkworm, Silkmoth)
- Daddy Long Legs (Pholcus Phalangioides)
- Earthworm (Helodrilus Calig, Lumbricus Terr)
- Dormouse (Glis Glis)
- Erinaceus Europus (Hedgehog)
- Feline Flea (Cat Flea)
- Piranha (Pygocentrus Natt)
- Rat Blood (Sanguis Soricis)
You might indeed wander into a pharmacy and buy “Lumbricus Terr“. The name sounds sciency, but what you have actually purchased is ultra dilute earthworm.
Category 2) Weird Objects
- Ammonite (fossil) …Yes really, a fossil
- Black Pearl … is this one really expensive, and how exactly do you dilute a black pearl?
- Drainage …I have no idea how they turn this into a remedy.
- Epoxy Putty … what is this supposed to cure?
- Fluorescent Light
- Fairy Liquid … must it be this brand, or will a generic brand work?
- Hair Dye (mixed) ….will different colours have different effects?
- Hoover Dust …From whose house?
- Hydrochloric Acid … They really do need to seriously dilute this one
- Light (Halogen) … Will it be a stronger remedy if it is a low wattage bulb?
- Microwave … Only tiny little waves work then?
- Nitroglycerinum (Glonoinum,Glonoine) … Boom
- Nitrous Oxide (Nitrogenium Oxy) … Are you laughing yet?
- Nasal Mucosa ….Seriously … ugh!
- Opal (Black) … The colour makes a difference!
- TNT (Trinitrotoluene) … again, Boom!
- X-Ray … I can see the scam here
- Laser Beam
- Granite (Lapis Granatum Murvey)
- Coronary Artery … belonging to who exactly?
- Pineal Gland …I’m beginning to wonder who they chopped up
- Placenta (Human)
- Rain Water
- RNA … If you understand what RNA actually is, then you will appreciated just how vague this actually is.
- Semen (human) … I really don’t want to ask about this one
- Trilobite (Elrathia Kingii – fossil)
- Tyrannosaurus Rex (fossil)
- Weeds (mixed) … This is also very vague. How do they decide what is and is not a weed?
Category 3) Colours (yes seriously, a colour)
What does this even mean. If you buy “blue” then what exactly is that source. Is it made of anything random that is “blue”?
- Orange … yes the colour not the fruit
- Rainbow (colour spectrum)
- Ultra Violet
Category 4) Endangered Species (How exactly did they get their hands on any of these?)
The World Wildlife fund might have a few concerns here.
- Bald Eagle (American, Haliaeetus)
- Orangutan (Pongo Pygmaeus)
- Snow Leopard (Panthera Uncia)
- Gorilla Blood
Category 5) Unusual Food
- Blue Cheese (Stilton) … I do have to wonder how old it is
- Chocolate … Would that be milk or dark chocolate?
Can I actually order these?
You can indeed.
Here is a link to their price list.
This is not satire, these are all very real homeopathy remedies that you can buy right now. Just be grateful that they are ultra diluted solutions so that the original molecules of the earthworm or rat blood are gone.
To criticise Homeopathy, I don’t need to take you through any of the robust clinical trials that reveal it does not work. Instead, all I need to do is to list what they are selling right now. That alone is wholly sufficient to expose it as utterly absurd.
What we literally have here unavoidably conjures up an image of medieval witches gathered around a bubbling steaming cauldron that contains a mixture of weird concoctions that have been randomly tossed in to infuse a brew with magical properties; eye of toad, spiders; moon shadows, etc…
To those that truly believe it really works, if you wish to consume highly diluted blues, yellows, fossils, earthworms, and Semen, I say this – I’ll leave you to it, and simply wish you the very best of luck.
To those that wonder if they are “taking the piss” here, the answer is a resounding “yes”, literally. They also have Urine on the list of what is perhaps the ultimate gullibility test. To those that make the observation that the colloquial translation of that Irish term into US speak is “fucking with you”, then it’s still true because they also have Semen on their list.