Walk around your neighborhood grocery store and chances are you’ll stumble upon terms like “natural,” “organic” and “non-GMO.” These are trending topics in the health and wellness industry, but the truth is, using nature in its purest form to heal and nourish our mind and body is nothing new. Homeopathy, or the treatment of disease using natural substances, has been around for centuries, and has been used by the great men and women of history to contain the spread of diseases, including scarlet fever. Surprised? Here are five other things you may not know about this natural system of healing
1. It’s based upon the philosophy of “like cures like.”
HomeopathyCenter.org defines homeopathy as “a safe, gentle, and natural system of healing that works with your body to relieve symptoms, restore itself and improve your overall health.” Based on a rule of nature called the Law of Similars, this type of medicine believes that a substance that causes the symptoms of a disease in healthy people would cure similar symptoms in sick people. So for instance, if you have runny nose and watery eyes, instead of controlling these symptoms as traditional medicine would, a homeopath might give you a micro-dose of allium cepa (red onion), which would cause the same symptoms to a healthy person, to help your body heal itself.
2. Homeopathy has been around for over 200 years.
Homeopathy was first discovered in 1799 by chemist and physician Samuel Hahnemann, founder of homeopathy, during an epidemic of scarlet fever. Although some sources say that this kind of healing dates back to the time of Hippocrates (462-377 BC).
3. It’s regulated by the FDA.
Homeopathic medicines are considered drugs under U.S. federal law, and are therefore covered by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). FDA regulates the manufacture, marketing and sales of all homeopathic medicines. Homeopathic medicines also follow the manufacturing and quality practices outlined in the Homeopathic Pharmacopoeia of the United States.
4. Homeopathy is not the same as herbal remedies.
Although homeopathic remedies are derived from natural substances, homeopathy should not be confused with herbal medicine, Chinese medicine, or other types of natural medicines. Unlike herbal supplements, which are regulated as foods, the FDA accepts homeopathic products as drugs. As drugs, homeopathic products must be manufactured in compliance with the FDA finished pharmaceutical Good Manufacturing Practices (GMPs) regulations for cleanliness, quality and testing.
5. It’s safe to use on children, expecting moms and pets.
Because of the minute doses used in homeopathy, the medicines labeled for internal use are non-toxic. When properly administered, these medicines are completely safe for everyone to use, including expecting moms, children, people in their senior years, and even pets. Generally safe to use without side effects, homeopathy medicines can be taken alongside conventional medications.
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