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Monday, 6 April 2020

Coronavirus. COVID-19. Does Natural Medicine have an alternative?

No-one can be in any doubt about the message we are hearing about coronavirus, COVID-19. It is loud, clear, and insistent. This is a killer disease. It threatens everyone. We must all wash our hands. We must self-isolate. We must support the NHS. National governments around the world have determined that they must put our entire way of life, and our economy at risk.

So is there no alternative to the coronavirus panic? What about the natural medical community? Does it have anything to offer? According to the conventional medical establishment, and its political allies in government and the mainstream media, there is no such alternative. TINA rules. We must do what we are told, quite regardless of the personal, social or economic consequences.

Nor is there much chance that anyone who is part of the pharmaceutical medical establishment will want to know about any such alternative. They will fight against it, vigorously, for two reasons.
  • First, they know that beyond 'washing your hands' and ventilators, their treatment cupboard is bare. 
  • Second, they would not want anyone to know that there is another way of looking at infections, and the threat they represent - it might undermine their monopoly with mainstream health services.
Yet this does not mean there is no alternative! So let me try to trace what strategy might have been put in place - had natural medicine a voice, any voice, any role within the pharmaceutical-dominated mainstream national health systems around the world. Let me muster as much arrogance as I can, and try to speak not only for homeopathy, but for naturopathy, herbalism, acupuncture, and so many more natural therapies.

Natural Medicine and the Immune System
Any natural health strategy would be built on our body's immune system. It is what makes natural medicine different to conventional medicine. This is not only our best defence against infections, it is something pharmaceutical medicine routinely ignores, and on occasions actually tries to undermine.

Our immune system is specifically designed to fight bacterial and viral infections, and it will usually do so if we look after it properly, and support it whenever necessary.

General Advice
There has been nothing particularly wrong with the general advice given to us by conventional medicine establishment during the last 2-3 months - just a bit limited. We should all wash our hands. But there is so much more that should have been done to encourage people to support and maintain their natural immunity:
  • good diet and nutrition, including the value of vitamins C and D,
  • freedom from unnecessary stress and anxiety, 
  • a sensible exercise regime, and good levels of general fitness. 
Natural therapies, in their many forms, always outlined how this is best done. Therapists would have described how we can all help to support our immune system. Every natural therapy would most certainly have stressed that 'natural' immunity was more important to our resistance to this coronavirus, or any other infection, than any pharmaceutical drug or vaccine.

An Infection Incident
Once there was an infection incident like the coronavirus outbreak, natural therapies would have placed even more emphasis on this general advice. Indeed, they have been doing so with their patients. If you have missed the message it is because it has been given no coverage by government, the conventional medicine, or the mainstream media. Their voice has been entirely censored. The wall-to-wall coverage of the pandemic has been monopolised by one system of medicine - that does not value the immune system is quite the same way.

All natural medicine stresses the importance of the immune system, and its message would have been to encourage everyone to improve their diet, to enhance their vitamin levels, to exercise, and keep fit. And this would, of course, have been done in addition to washing their hands!

In addition, each of the natural therapies, such as homeopathy, naturopathy, acupuncture and herbalism, would have been offering their remedies and treatments to anyone who wanted them, or who needed to boost their natural immunity against the infection.

Two things would have arisen by a campaign to boast our natural immunity:
  • it would have helped to prevent the number of people who contracted the virus,
  • and it would have ensured the virus, if contracted, was in a mild form.
Protection Strategy
The panic that now surrounds COVID-19 has been generated by a medical system, dominated as it is by the drug industry, that has no effective protection or treatment against this, or any other viral or bacterial infection - beyond vaccines of highly questionable effectiveness and safety. As a result, the reaction to the panic has been to place most people in self-isolation, or quarantine.

This would not have been necessary for a medical system that had any level of confidence in its treatment.

Even the media is telling us that COVID-19 is killing very few people who do not have an 'underling health problem'. Natural medicine would have been able to look at this fact, coldly and rationally, and recognise that the virus was not as 'deadly' as we are being told, that the vast majority of people who were dying were actually dying of the  'underlying health conditions', with the infection an added complication.

If natural medicine was in the ascendant it would not have been necessary to place everyone into lock-down - a large proportion of the population would not have been seen to be vulnerable, or in need of special protection measures and self isolation.

Society would not have had to be closed down as it has been. The economy would not have to be placed in jeopardy. This would have had two consequences that would have enable us to take a quite different approach to COVID-19.
  • Those who do not have 'underlying health problems' would have benefited from a supported immune system. They would have been allowed to continue working, contributing to the economy, and playing a part in maintaining normal social and economic life. Some of these people would, indeed, catch the virus. But with natural medicine there would have been an element of confidence in the bodies of fit and healthy individuals to either resist the infection, or recover from it. It would have had treatment that would limit the impact of the infection. I have discussed the homeopathic treatment of influenza here (and coronavirus is flu) and compared it with conventional medical treatment.
  • Those people who did have 'underlying health problems', and so were more at risk of the infection, would have gone into self-isolation. In addition, these people would be offered the same advice about supporting their immune system, and where necessary receive treatments from homeopaths, herbalists, naturopaths and others. Ultimately, and where necessary, there would be the option of hospitalisation and ventilators.
Avoiding social and economic closure
The closing down of social and economic activity is a direct consequence of our almost total reliance on pharmaceutical medicine, which wants us to believe that immunity comes from a bottle of pills (even when it does not have any pills to offer), or a vaccination.

It does not.

The alternative strategy offered by natural medicine would have meant that only people with 'underlying health conditions' would have to take special care, including self-isolation and quarantine, et al. Otherwise, society would have continued normally.The size of the problem would have been instantly and massively reduced. The closing down of social and economic life would not have been necessary, with all the problems this is going to cause in future months - after this pandemic inevitably closes down.

The fit population, with a fully functioning immune system, could carry on with their normal lives, and help support the support of the most vulnerable.

The role of pharmaceutical medicine is causing the panic

And perhaps another lesson might have been learnt. Many people with 'underlying health problems' will have an opportunity to understand using pharmaceutical drug treatments (for a variety of illnesses and diseases), some of them quite intentionally, have actually undermined their immune systems. If there is anyone reading this who has any doubt about this you only have to look at what conventional medicine does with its 'immuno-suppressant' drugs. Anyone who takes these drugs, whose immune system is suppressed, is more susceptible to infection, including coronavirus COVID-19.

Treatment Options
What are the treatments that are offered by natural medicine? Homeopaths, for example, have been looking at the symptoms of this COVID-19 infection very closely since the earliest days of the outbreak, and a number of remedies have been identified that are known to treat the symptoms. They include Arsenicum Album, Bryonia, Gelsenium and Eupatorium. These, and other remedies, have been used successfully by homeopaths to treat flu-like illnesses (and COVID-19 is a flu-like illness) for a very long time.

The clinical evidence for their effectiveness of these remedies is huge, and a matter of public record. I have listed about 10 studies that vouch for this effectiveness in my "Why Homeopathy?"

Other natural therapies have done the same, and they would have been able to offer these treatments to patients in the same way, providing patients with an alternative, a choice, the opportunity not to panic.