What is Homeopathy and how does it work? Homeopathy isn’t a new idea. It was introduced by the German Physician, Samuel Hahnemann, over 200 years ago and Homeopathy’s premise is based on a few interesting ideas.
According to The National Centre for Homeopathy, the first idea is that “like cures like” and that’s exactly what Homeopathy means in Greek, coming from the Greek words, “same/ similar suffering”. In Homeopathy, something that produces symptoms in a healthy person can also make a sick person healthy.
Take caffeine for example, a molecule that keeps people awake. Caffeine might be used to treat people with insomnia, but only if the caffeine is diluted to very small amounts, and that’s the second premise, the more diluted the remedy, the more potent it is.
Homeopaths take into account a holistic view of a person and the third premise is that the illness is specific to the person.
There are a lot of questions around what Homeopathy is and how it works, but also around homeopathic medicines, such as what they are and how homeopathic remedies are made. If we go back to that caffeine example, a bit of caffeine goes through the process of ‘potentization’, which involves dilution and succession (vigorous shaking), so all the toxic effects of the extract or compound are removed. And when we say dilution, we mean a lot of dilution, until you wind up with one part of the original substance in 10,000 parts of the solution. The process can then be repeated, time and time again.
Basically, the plant or animal extract is so diluted that there’s almost no molecules of it left, but according to homeopathic theory, the more diluted it is, the more “potency” it has. Homeopaths believe that water retains the “memory” of that extract. The idea is that after each dilution, the extract and water, sugar, or whatever the dilution is, goes through succession, which activates the “vital energy” of the extract.
Samuel Hahnemann was a great observer and realized that many illnesses occur without many symptoms. When a patient is sick, he often does not realize and according to his observations, it’s not only the patient who doesn’t realize that he is sick, but also his body’s own immune system.
Animation can be used to demonstrate this theory, by using an example such as athlete’s foot. If a patient runs around a pool barefoot, and got infected with athlete’s foot, the fungus feels very comfortable inside the skin and a skin fungus disease occurs. However, the patient does not feel any of what’s going on with his foot.
Hahnemann’s teachings are based on symptom-oriented medicine, which means that if there are no symptoms, for example, pain or itching, there is not going to be a response from the immune system, and the patient cannot get healthy. It was his opinion that if the stimulus was increased with the same disease inflicting agents, the immune system would become aware of the disease or illness and jump into action and only then could the patient be healed.
In this case, he gives the swimmer the same fungus and hopes the swimmer regains his health. This assumption gave the treatment the name “Homeopathy” from the Greek “homos”, meaning the same or similar, and “pathos” meaning the suffering or the disease. A disease is treated with the triggering cause, a kind of tit for tat.
The teachings mirrored the knowledge about immune system response at the time, however, immunity procedures known today are much more complex. Just because we don’t see or feel them, doesn’t mean that our body isn’t working against them.
Generally, we hardly feel these processes. Take an old, continuously, bedridden patient for example. They often remain in one position for an extended period of time, until they lie themselves sore. However, only movement causes pain, so long as they are mobile in one particular position, they remain pain free.
Homeopathic thesis has been somewhat forgotten and today, Homeopathy is more of an alternative method of treatment to conventional medicine, known as alternative medicine.
At the moment, treatment and symptom-oriented medicine, meaning homeopathy, is a lucrative field. Many people believe that Homeopathy is something natural and biological, while conventional medicine represents the Chemical Mace.
During the course of evolution, many natural plants have developed substances to efficiently defend themselves against microorganisms. Many of these natural substances are the foundation for contemporary medications.
Does Homeopathy actually work?
As you now know, Homeopathy is a form of alternative medicine, practiced by millions all over the world. The National Health Service in the UK spends about 4 million pounds a year on homeopathic treatments, and some estimates place that number as high as 11 million pounds.
Did you know that even the Royal Family seem to be fans? The Queen’s Physician, Peter Fisher, recently called for more people to use it. He says that it’s “Safe, popular with patients, improves clinical outcomes without increasing costs, and reduces the use of potentially hazardous drugs, including antimicrobials.” Although in the US, the National Institute of Health says that “There is little evidence to support Homeopathy as an effective treatment for any specific condition.”
How does Homeopathy work?
If you have heard of natural homeopathic remedies, you might be asking yourself just how does Homeopathy work? Based on the principle that “like treats like”, micro amounts of natural substances and chemicals which usually cause illnesses and sicknesses, are used to treat them.
This is the same basic principle of medicinal vaccination, but the difference is that homeopathic remedies are used to treat illnesses and symptoms, while vaccination is used as a preventive measure.
The scientific approach is different as well. Homeopathic remedies go through a secession process. This is when a very small, molecular amount of a natural chemical, herb or substance is diluted in water and sometimes other solutions.
Secession occurs when this mixture is shaken intensely. While herbs are sometimes used, homeopathic treatments should not be confused with herbal remedies which do not undergo the secession process.
Since scientists believe that water has a memory, even when there is no presence of the original substance, the water it was mixed in still contains a minuscule presence of that natural chemical or herb.
These incredibly diluted homeopathic remedies have been proven to effectively treat symptoms and illnesses of both the mind and body. This works in animals and plants as well as humans as they are all-natural living things. Since humans and animals are natural entities, it makes sense that nature can safely be used to treat their illnesses, ailments and diseases effectively.
Have you ever diced or sliced a red onion? If so, you may have experienced a runny nose, watery eyes, sneezing and possibly even an itchy throat while doing so. That is why red onion, in its rawest form, can be succeed into an effective homeopathic remedy for people suffering from colds or mild allergies, since the symptoms are similar.
As there is little to no molecular traces of the original red onion in the homeopathic remedy, there is no chance for negative side effects. However, the immune systems of animals and humans are so diligent that they recognize the trace of red onion in the succeed homeopathic remedy.
The body’s own healing mechanisms and immune system are alerted, and the result is your body doing what it does naturally. It begins addressing the symptoms of your illness or ailment, while also strengthening your body’s defences. This makes homeopathic treatment for animals and humans a gentle yet very effective system of healing.
So how does homeopathy actually work?
It works to address illnesses by stimulating and boosting a human’s or animal’s own natural healing powers using natural substances. Since the process is natural, it can be used to treat children and adults, men and women, and animals of all kinds.
How are Homeopathy remedies manufactured?
The monkshood or Aconitum napellus is an important raw material for a frequently used Homeopathy medication. Aconitum ranks as the most toxic plant in flora so the production of the mother tincture caused for the utmost care.
The finely chopped components of the entire plant are mixed with 86% alcohol. After mixing, the tincture has to stand for further 20 days, before it can be filtered. Metals and minerals, which are not soluble in water, are treated with lactose strict compliance with the regulations stated in Homeopathy.
Pharmacopoeia is required here, and the base substance is first mixed with one-third of the total quantity of lactose. Scraping for several minutes is part of the recipe. The second third is added after 20 minutes. The mixture is completed by adding the last third of lactose. It takes one hour to attain the potency level and a further hour is required for each additional level.
The animal kingdom also supplies basic materials for the manufacture of Homeopathic medications. Examples include snake venom from viper aspis or nasha, properly known as the common Cobra.
In order to extract the snake venom, the breeder has to milk the animal. Not everyone is prepared to take on this task, especially when a poisonous snake by the name of Catalyst to Rhesus is involved as this is an extremely dangerous rattlesnake. If milking is successful, the animal releases just a few drops of venom, which are diluted with glycerine to form the basis of a mother tincture.
The production of Homeopathy medications starts in the mother tincture room. Strictly certified production standards require that the preparation of mother tinctures must always be verified by two employees. When the tinctures are ready for potentization, the laboratory technician starts by measuring out precisely two grams of mother tincture and every step of production must be recorded in complete detail.
Then the technician fills a vial with alcohol, up to a filling weight of 20 grams. The diluted liquid is then potent iced for at least 10 seconds and this is followed up by the next dilution step.
Exactly 9 parts of alcohol are again added to one part of the success liquid, followed by another potentization. Dilution and potentization based on the decimal system are then continued until the desired level of potency is attained. The final product is so highly potent that no further toxic effects are possible.
What does the science say about how it works?
One study published in the journal, Rheumatology, found that Homeopathy helped arthritis patients over the course of six months when added alongside conventional medicine, but it was because of “its unique consultation process”. Basically, Homeopathy treats the patient, not just the symptoms, so it was the one-on-one, patient focused Homeopathy approach that helped.
Conditions that report positive outcomes when Homeopathy is used include the following:
The condition that is currently the most common referral to Homeopathy in the UK is eczema.
More and more scientific studies on Homeopathy are being conducted every year and this clinical research is being published in peer-review journals on a regular basis. It is providing evidence as to the effectiveness of homeopathic treatments, medicines and remedies, and it is also helping the scientific community better understand this type of alternative medicine.
So, what is Homeopathy and how does it work?
You now have a better understanding of what Homeopathy is exactly, how it works, how it is manufactured and what science thinks of Homeopathy. Even the Queen of England’s physician endorses Homeopathy!
Homeopathic medicines have been used for over 200 years and are being used by millions of patients around the world today. Homeopathy is recommended by health care professionals to treat many health conditions on a worldwide scale.
Homeopathic medicines and remedies are safe to use and rarely cause side effects, overdose or addiction. When homeopathic medicines and remedies are used appropriately under the guidance of a qualified homeopathic doctor, they can be extremely effective. By using Homeopathy, you are encouraging the body to heal itself through its natural immune system which is a more gentle and supportive kind of treatment.