The Earth and Science Heal! A Discussion of Alternative Medicines
We often hear people referring to science-based naturopathic medicines as homeopathic, and many often lump Spiritual-based remedies into the mix as well. However, they all have a unique definition and their own way of treating ailments. At Earth MD we use natural medicine based on research and we want to take the opportunity to explain why, as well as the differences between the other approaches. We personally do not use homeopathic or spiritual medicines. However, we wanted to represent them fairly and will discuss the pros and cons of each in case someone wants to try them out. If you are a person that uses either and it works well for you and/or your pets, then we are glad you found a natural alternative that is effective!
Holistic Natural Medicine
Unfortunately, there is no one term that refers to a category for supplements such as those made by us at Earth MD. They consist of ingredients, mainly plant material, minerals, and possibly animal material such as cartilage, that have scientific research proving that they have therapeutic benefits. Many of their benefits are the same as drugs, but with less potential side effects. Fore example, antibiotics are the most prescribed drug in the veterinary world. However, they can have major health detriments, such as Yeast Candida, digestive issues, nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, long term damage to the immune system, etc . All of these side effects are typically seen when taking the recommended dosage. However, using a natural alternative antibiotic, such as colloidal silver, has much fewer side effects. You must drink several barrels of a well-made 20ppm colloidal silver in order to see any side effects, such as algyria. Many plants have natural compounds in them that can treat and prevent disease. People can use these to benefit us and our pets. It may be fascinating to know that several of these plants are items we eat every day, such as ginger, garlic, and cumin! For example, ginger was shown in a study to not only to be an H2 inhibitor but to also stabilize mast cells . This is what an antihistamine drug does to treat and prevent allergies, but without the side effects of drowsiness, dizziness, constipation, loss of appetite, among others, commonly associated with seasonal allergy drugs . In some cases, these plants have been shown to be as effective or more effective than their chemical counterparts. Like I pointed out before, natural medicine can be based on scientific evidence available to show efficacy, and this is what we stand for and promote in our own products.
Many pet parents ask us why we do not have scientific studies and trials done specifically on our products to prove safety and efficacy. Products such as ours that are safe in large doses have the option of being registered as a drug or as a veterinary health product (VHP). Unsafe products must be registered as drugs. In order to register as a VHP, you must prove that it is safe to be taken in the recommended doses. No trials need to be done, however, no therapeutic claims can be made. In order to register a product as a drug, many tests of safety and efficacy are completed. This process costs hundreds of thousands of dollars per product and when it is finished, the product can only be sold at veterinary clinics. This would be a detriment to most companies because natural products cannot be trademarked, therefore they cannot afford to incentivize vets the way pharmaceutical companies can. This makes it very difficult for natural products to compete with chemical drugs. On the other hand, if a company that makes natural products were to hire a third party to do a trial, then it could cost even more than a drug registration. Even after proving its safety and efficacy, the VHP program prevents companies from making any therapeutic claims on packaging. This means that all those tests would have been for the few people that ask for them. Only drugs are allowed to make claims, and like we said before, drugs can only be sold by vets, making them less accessible to the public. This is why natural products have to use studies already done by third parties for proof that they are safe and effective.
What does the word homeopathic mean to you? Unfortunately, this word is often used to refer to natural medicines in general, which is not the case. Homeopathy in particular is based on the main principle of “Like Cures Like .” This means that homeopathic medicine uses the belief that a substance that causes disease in a healthy person will cure the same disease in a sick person. If you look at it scientifically, by giving someone a disease-causing agent then you are bringing more of the sick person’s immune system to attack that particular disease. In theory, this does have potential to work since it is similar to a vaccine. Those using homeopathic preparations must take caution though and do not go over the recommended dosage. Since you are giving the person or animal a disease-causing substance, obviously if given too much the body will not be able to cope with it. For example, Rue extract is used in homeopathic preparations. It is used to treat headaches, pain relief, plantar feet warts, among other things . However, it is commonly known as a poisonous plant and when taken in medicinal quantities can cause liver and kidney toxicity, stomach pain, convulsions, nausea… the list goes on . People wanting to try homeopathic medicine must remember that it is meant to be taken in low dosages. In fact, those familiar with homeopathy will be acquainted with the Law of Infinitesimals, which states that the lower the concentration of a substance the more potent its effects. Possibly due to the fact that many of these medicines can be toxic when taken even in moderate doses, homeopathy follows this rule.
The idea behind these types of medicinal practices and remedies is based on the aura and resonance of the spirit. They work with entities that are unseen, but are felt, such as spirits and chakras. These differ from other natural medicines because it is not based on science, but on traditional practices and emotional wellbeing. Spiritual medicines include reiki, tree essences, and healing crystals. Because they aren’t based on science it is hard to prove their efficacy. As someone with a science degree is it hard for me to believe in them, but I don’t mean to disparage the people that do. Like I mentioned before, if you use these remedies and you found something that works for you, that is great!
When you open your mind to alternative medicine and taking a holistic approach to life you discover a wider perspective full of natural medicines that span the entire world! From traditional Chinese medicines to Indian ayurvedic healing. People that think that natural medicines do not work are typically those that are exposed to either shoddy versions of spiritual medicine or holistic ones that make incorrect claims (essentially the term “Snake Oil”.) At Earth MD, we have the research to back any claims we make!
 Antiallergic potential on RBL-2H3 cells of some phenolic constituents of Zingiber Officinale (Ginger), https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19271742
 Side effects -Antibiotics, https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/antibiotics/side-effects/
 Homeopathy, https://homeopathyusa.org/homeopathic-medicine.html