Celebrities endorse all kinds of products. Commercialism dictates that these people are constantly urging us to buy a certain brand of perfume, clothing, confectionery, alcohol, technology and so on. Some of these products are more harmful than others, but none of these are as dangerous as the endorsement of something that encourages people to NOT use real medicine.
For this reason the 2 things in the world that really test my patience are homeopathy and religion. They encourage people to place their physical (and mental) health in the hands of hope, placebo, and chance, when there is really nothing of substance or truth there. So, imagine how boiled my blood became today when I saw this article being shared across the internet:
Some of the mentioned ‘celebs’ are easily dismissed as not knowing anything about health, but anyone with a platform to reach a wide audience can do damage. Some more than others, and these in particular really caught my eye, because they are more likely to have their knowledge of health, fitness, or nature taken as fact.
James Ellington, Team GB sprinter, 26
My health is my top priority, from eating a balanced diet to the types of medicine I use.
Training six times a week is incredibly demanding and it’s more important than ever to keep my body in the best possible condition.
Homeopathy offers me a positive and natural way to prevent sporting ailments such as exertion, muscular pain and aching joints, without any residual effects on my performance.
I use remedies such as Ruta grav, which helps treat sprained ligaments, Gelsemium for pre-race jitters, Arnica for bruising and Bellis perennis to treat exertion.
They all offer athletes a natural alternative to traditional and sometimes harmful medicines.
This person is an athlete. A seemingly fit and healthy person whose opinion about what someone else might be able to do to be fit and healthy is going to be listened to.
Another former sportsperson, Annabel Croft, had this to say,
I use homeopathy for myself and my family to treat everything from early signs of coughs and colds to sports injuries.
I embrace it as a way of life, visit my homeopath every few months and use a whole host of remedies.
Homeopathy has worked wonders for me personally and I cannot deny its effectiveness.
I have raised my three children on homeopathy, using remedies whenever they’ve been unwell.
Taking a leaf out of their mother’s book, my children have even been known to lecture the school doctor on benefits of homeopathy over traditional medicines.
Let’s not mince words here. She just admitted to ignorantly abusing her children. She chooses to essentially do nothing (or use a placebo at best) to care for her children when she has the access to, and the resources to pay for, real medical intervention. Granted, a cough and a cold will remedy itself in most cases, but not all, and let’s not forget that belief in this nonsense goes much further than treatment for common ailments of limited risk.
Even the scientific mind is not immune to un-scientific voodoo claptrap. David Bellamy, famous botanist, proudly endorses this stuff:
I support homeopathy as it’s safe and cheap. Compared to the usual drugs, it can be effective.
Many homeopathic medicines are derived from natural things like cowslip, which can be used for a number of complaints including eczema.
More and more people are now using homeopathy and realising the benefits of a more natural approach to healthcare.
Yes, David, it’s reasonably cheap, but ironically quite expensive for what you’re getting (water). It is also safe, as you can’t overdose on it. But that safety is only in the action of taking it. The omission of real care that you’re also choosing is most certainly not safe, and can potentially be fatal.
Seriously, people, if you’re in a position where your voice gets heard by a disproportionately high number of people (as even C-list media types in the tabloids do) then you have a moral responsibility to not promote dangerous crap like this. Get informed, or at least encourage others to inform themselves so that their awareness of a medical treatment is based on facts, and not celebrity.