The Meeting Place

Homeopathy is a crock

“Homeopathy is a crock” seems to be the only thing people have taken away from the leaked draft report created by the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC). But that isn’t really what the report was saying. The report simply stated that based on the evidence the NHMRC did not find homeopathy to be effective in treating and curing illness.

The report also warned that homeopathy could be dangerous when patients chose to rely solely on homeopathic remedies to cure life-threatening illnesses instead of coupling it with conventional medicine.

And that is really the heart of the issue, isn’t it? Homeopathy is a complementary medicine. Where conventional medicine treats a set of symptoms based on hard science, complementary medicine is based on the idea that an illness should be treated at the source. Complementary medicines often aim to treat other areas – for example releasing the body’s energy flow or expelling toxin build-ups.

Complementary medicine is also often about treating the mind. Any doctor will tell you that a patient with a positive outlook is going to get better more quickly than a patient who has given up. Many people find that complementary medicine, whether it is homeopathy, acupuncture or reflexology, just makes them feel good. So why is it so important to discredit these practices?

No, there probably isn’t much evidence to suggest that homeopathy cures cancer. Yes, it probably is dangerous to rely solely on homeopathy to work medical miracles. But very few reputable homeopathy practitioners would say otherwise. By its very definition as a complementary medicine homeopathy is designed to be used in conjunction with other therapies. It can’t be complementary if there’s nothing for it to complement.

So why are newspapers employing these scare tactics? The whole thing feels like a bit of a witch-hunt to me, where the powers-that-be hide their fear of the unknown behind a good old-fashioned bonfire.

What do you think? Is homeopathy a crock? Or does it have validity in the medical world? And either way, should people still be allowed to practice it?


It would be as useful as listening to Dr Phil on psychology, or the psychic cold readers on late night TV.

How come infinite dilution gets rid of the toxic effects of substances used while multiplying the effect of the claimed positive effects?  Tap water is infinitely diluted, drink that.