Evidence Based Complementary Medicine

”For those who believe, no proof is necessary. For those who don’t believe, no proof is possible.“ – Stuart Chase

No doubt Mr. Chase was referring to religious faith when he penned these words. However, they could also apply to natural medicine. I mentioned in the last BWH newsletter that I attended the inaugural International Conference on Evidence Based Complementary Medicine. There were many presentations including several on herbs such as St. John’s Wort and Rhodiola. They were subjected to rigorous scientific trials, most proving the herbs to be as or more effective than drug therapy. While this is an exciting development, there is also the argument that questions why natural medicines need to be ‘proved’ in the scientific paradigm at all? Particularly if they have been used continuously as medicine for hundreds, even thousands of years. Also, various modalities including homoeopathy and acupuncture do not fit with the current landscape of scientific thinking, so they are dismissed out of hand.

My head hurts. It’s all too hard!

Hand me the Kava.