Sunday, 12 August 2012

Pseudoscience stuff from the fortnight 30/7 - 12/8/12

Ever heard of Skeptics StackExchange?
It's a great web-site where you can ask a question, and a skeptic will answer it for you. Take this great example:

The Medical Minute: Debunking 'old wives' tales' about health
Swallowing chewing gum; shaving for thickness; cracking knuckles; growth-stunting coffee; and eating before swimming

"Dogs have been trained to detect lung cancer (by breath smell) but the data supporting dogs detecting cancer is scant and mostly anecdotal as is this story... There is no smell or signal from a tumor under the skin. So, HOW a dog could detect such a thing is a huge looming question mark."

Have you noticed sportspeople, at the Olympics, covered in tape? It's Kinesio-taping, and it's all the rage amongst sportspeople, desperate to gain 'an edge'.

The dodgy medicine section:

'Herbal products marketed for U.K. children may contain unsuitable ingredients'
A word of advice -- herbal medicine is medicine with all the side-effect-causing shit left in - real medicine has all that stuff taken *out*
"A U.K. agency issued urgent notice for a manufacturer to remove an herbal product from the shelves due to possible unlisted ingredients that may be harmful."

'Naturopaths a bit too eager to recommend treatment at Hempfest'
"While this story can be the seed for a dozen jokes, let’s hit the foundation. Naturopaths are NOT equivalent to medical doctors. Some may be, but if they practice under the “naturopath” label, one should not anticipate the same type of care or knowledge as from a medical doctor."

'Warning about Chinese medicine – ineffective and potentially harmful'
Another word of advice -- there's no such thing as 'chinese medicine' - it's either medicine or it's not. And what's called 'chinese medicine' is not.

'Homeopathic nosodes are NOT alternatives to vaccines'
That's right -- homeopathic superstition can't innoculate you against diseases, any more than it can treat them. It's shaken water, people. Shaken water. Don't waste your money, time, energy, and mental health.
What's a nosode? It's disgusting, that's what:

'FDA finds serious quality problems at UK homeopathy manufacturer'
"If this was a real drug company, the implications could be disastrous. If one in six packs of antibiotics was duff, you can bet that we’d hear about that and there would be huge fines levied all round."
But because it's just shaken water, the problems are, thankfully, obsolete. Unfortunately, the modality is also obsolete, and should be ignored by anyone actually seeking to improve their health.

An Israeli alt-meder thinks she's the reincarnation of Marilyn Monroe. Nobody laugh :-P

'Morse waterbording case: Was he torturing his child to further his research into near death experience? (UPDATED)'

'Animal mutilation and speculation in Colorado'

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