Steve Novella takes on Chinese medicine

I'm a big fan of Steve Novella, and his recent blog ripping apart the stupidity of Chinese medicine is a prime example. It's a must-read.

This isn't a small deal. Being a personal trainer, I hear a lot about various aches and pains and the lengths people will go to fix them. Every time a client says, "I have an appointment with my chiropractor tomorrow!" I have to bite my tongue. Being in a professional environment I have to voice my opinions judiciously, and I generally don't tell people what I really think about chiropractic (like, it's a fucking pseudoscience and a total rip-off) unless my opinion is solicited directly. It's not just chiropractic, of course; I hear a lot about "detox" diets, acupuncture, Mona Vie, miracle foods and all other manner of pseudoscience and outright bullshit.

People are gullible, and it's easy for those well-versed in the language of woo to sound credible through the use of sophisticated-sounding language. Hell, just the word "subluxation", the basis of all chiropractic "medicine", is technical-sounding, but, in the words of Wikipedia,
In 2009, four scholarly chiropractors concluded that epidemiologic evidence does not support chiropractic's most fundamental theory. Since its inception, the vast majority of chiropractors have postulated that "subluxations" (misalignments) are the cause or underlying cause of ill health and can be corrected with spinal "adjustments." After searching the scientific literature, the chiropractic authors concluded:
"No supportive evidence is found for the chiropractic subluxation being associated with any disease process or of creating suboptimal health conditions requiring intervention. Regardless of popular appeal, this leaves the subluxation construct in the realm of unsupported speculation. This lack of supportive evidence suggests the subluxation construct has no valid clinical applicability."[33]
Buyer beware. And, read Steve Novella's blog.


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