Facts against absurdities from the netIt is the agony of the choice: From health to illness, from early recognition to therapy, you can take up not only health insurance benefits, but also a wealth of medical private services and over-the-counter medicines and health products.
You are spoilt for choice: from health to illness, from early detection to therapy, you can not only make use of health insurance benefits, but also a wealth of private medical services and over-the-counter medicines and health products. Much is offered with partly full-bodied advertising promises. Among them are unfortunately also untested methods or offers with questionable benefit or even potential for harm. Here are a few examples and the facts about what medicine actually knows about them.
The most important thing in short:
– From vitamin D to MMS: On the Internet all kinds of things are advertised for better health, which are supposed to promote health or cure an illness. – It becomes dangerous, if in on-line Shops or in the direct sale forbidden substances or means with illegal additions are sold. – Even in doctors' offices or hospitals, unnecessary examinations or treatments with the potential to cause harm can be suggested to you. – Even "natural" or "purely herbal" remedies can be dangerous.
Why many health offers are dubious
Health offers there are a lot. But benefits are not always. Damage clearly identifiable. In social networks in particular, dubious offers can be made easily, even without scientific evidence. People in search of healing or relief may find this particularly appealing. The danger: Such offers cost money, are probably useless and in the worst case can delay or prevent effective treatment.
Measuring body values by metal rod?
Deficiency symptoms, inflammations or certain diseases could be detected in medicine with the help of body fluids. For example, blood or urine samples can be helpful in diagnostics. On the other hand, it is not scientifically plausible that a metal rod can analyze blood values or a vitamin or mineral deficiency through skin contact alone. Studies on this are not to be found. Nevertheless, this method of so-called bioresonance is offered as a self-pay service.
A professional review shows that the devices cannot distinguish between healthy, seriously ill and deceased people. Not even recognizing the difference between a human, a meat loaf, and a wet rag. Our cooperation partner "Medizin-transparent" from Cochrane Austria offers a comprehensible, scientifically based analysis on this topic.
Plastic card for health aura?
Many active substances in medicines function according to the lock-and-key principle. An active ingredient fits a target like a key in a lock. A lot of research is needed. A precise knowledge of the body's biochemistry. So a simple plastic card placed under the mattress for a better health aura, which helps against almost everything, can not work – even with sonorous names like "aura balance".
The promise: Allergies, high blood prere, rheumatism, back pain, varicose veins or potency disorders could be cured by a bioenergetic field. This is scientifically unfounded, because there are no so-called human energy fields in physics. On the contrary, on relevant websites terms from esotericism are mixed with medical and physical technical terms (GWUP: Einstein, Heisenberg and the healing with energy fields, Krautreporter: Human energy fields do not exist).
As early as 2001, the Federal Court in Austria ruled that the Federal Office for Health there had rightly prohibited the marketing of the "Aura-Balance-Akku" with healing claims (ruling 2A.504/2000 from 28.2.01).
Super condition and energy deficits?
Equally scientifically implausible is a "revolutionary" grid chip made of a gold alloy. Which is said to cause the body's water molecules to "transition to the coherent state – the super state". Or a so-called biotensor, which detects energy deficits and is reminiscent of a dowsing rod and is both a testing and measuring and diagnostic device.
Healing stones and gemstone rods?
There is also no scientific evidence for the amption that healing stones can promote health or improve the quality of drinking water. The same applies to gemstone wands, which are advertised with the promise of invigorating and "energizing" tap water and thus dissolving blockages.
When health products endanger health
Only pharmacies are allowed to sell prescription drugs in Germany. This is to ensure advice from medical professionals (doctor and pharmacist). But there are also over-the-counter drugs and dietary supplements. These are not automatically beneficial to health or free of side effects. In Germany, not everything is as strictly regulated as it seems. A classification as an over-the-counter medicine, homeopathic medicine or natural remedy does not clearly mean that it is safe. Some examples of potentially dangerous products:
– Dietary supplements with herbal ingredients can be problematic, so-called "miracle products" Botanicals. Because here partly with unsubstantiated health promises ("Health Claims") is advertised. Although health-related claims in food advertising must be verifiable and substantiated by studies, this has been the case since 2006 under the EU Health Claims Regulation. However, the implementation for herbal products was stopped in 2010. Since then, more than half of the applications submitted for review of health claims have not been evaluated, so the products are on the market untested.
Herbal ingredients can be harmful to health. Particularly in the case of exotic plants, there is sometimes insufficient proof of safety. In addition, interactions with medications are possible.
– For Dietary supplements, the ability to think and Brain health are supposed to promote, there is no proven medical efficacy. They do not, for example, help prevent dementia.
– Also substances that are hazardous to health find their way into food supplements, especially in direct sales on the Internet. Example Ephedra: The drug to stimulate the nervous system has been banned in the EU since 2015. Because it can be hazardous to health up to life-threatening and lead to sweating, cardiac arrhythmia, high blood prere or seizures, especially at high doses. However, there is no legally binding list of dangerous plants, only a warning from the Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR), which has reviewed 18 significant plants and herbal preparations for their health effects. In these articles you will learn more about harmful substances in dietary supplements and about the fact that the term "purely herbal" does not mean "herbal" does not always mean that something is harmless.
– Particularly sensitive are Miracle cure of all kinds. Pills or powders for rapid weight loss (so-called fat burners with Synephrine and Caffeine, dangerous for heart and health) or dietary supplements from the Internet for potency or performance enhancement, may contain illegal drug substances.
– Also touted as a "miracle cure" for years, the so-called Miracle Mineral Supplement (MMS). Promised to cure autism, diabetes, AIDS, hepatitis, tuberculosis, malaria or cancer. In fact however MMS represents a substantial health endangerment, because it consists of the bleaching agent sodium chlorite and becomes, mixed with an acid, the poisonous and corrosive chlorine dioxide.
– Also Silver water (water enriched with silver particles, colloidal silver) is said to help against pathogens, ear or stomach aches as well as the coronavirus. However, this is not advisable, because silver water is not a medicine and also not a food. There is no evidence of supposed effects, not even for prevention. There are also no conclusive studies available. However, it has been proven that the skin can turn blue-gau after a longer period of ingestion. The German Federal Office for Risk Assessment also advises against drinking silver water. In addition to silver water, gold water (water enriched with gold particles, colloidal gold) is also said to be effective against some diseases, e.g.B. Alzheimer's disease, multiple sclerosis, cancer or depression, work. Also these statements about possible effects can not be made, because there are no studies about it.
Damage potential for alternative practitioners and physicians
Health care professionals also offer untested or potentially harmful treatments or procedures to. Particularly in the case of services that are paid for privately, there is a risk that treatments that are out of line, ineffective or dangerous will be used. Four examples:
Alternative practitioners claim to be able to treat cancer and shrink the tumor with it. Terms such as "bioelectric cancer therapy" or "electrochemotherapy" (ECT) are used to advertise a procedure using direct current that is directed to the tumor via needle electrodes. The Cancer Society of North Rhine-Westphalia already criticized in 2014 that providers claim that this is a "gentle" therapy that only destroys cancer cells and does not affect healthy tie. However, these statements are scientifically unproven and "to be rejected as a pure advertising strategy".
In a so-called biological cancer center in Bruggen in the district of Viersen near the Dutch border, three people died in 2016 because a non-medical practitioner administered infusions to them with a homemade, overdosed and unapproved drug – for just under 10.000 euros. It should "starve out" the cancer cells. The alternative practitioner was sentenced to two years' imprisonment on probation by the Krefeld Regional Court.
Back operations in particular are among the procedures that health insurers say are performed too frequently. Therefore, many insurance companies offer a second opinion before surgery.
In the case of offers for early detection, there are always debates about the benefits of certain examinations. For years, the IGeL Monitor of the Medical Service of the National Association of Health Insurance Funds (MDS) has criticized the ill-considered use of self-paying health services such as glaucoma screening, PSA testing or ovarian ultrasound. Because false positive results in healthy people can lead to unnecessary treatments.
What to do? Use your right to a second opinion and independent information: ask another doctor, check reliable websites before making a decision too quickly.