All posts by Scott Gavura

Not natural, not safe: Grapefruit Seed Extract

Grapefruit-seed extract is claimed to be a cure-all for nearly every type of infection. But there's a dangerous problem with GSE that supplement manufacturers haven't fixed.

/ March 10, 2016

Genomic testing at your pharmacy: Ready for prime time?

Despite science’s ability to develop sophisticated and targeted new drugs, predicting the effect of a drug in an individual is still maddeningly difficult. Not every drug works for everyone that takes it. Similarly, the very same drug can be well tolerated in some, but can cause intolerable side effects in others. So-called “targeted therapies” were supposed to improve our accuracy, by focusing...

/ February 25, 2016

Is it ethical to sell complementary and alternative medicine?

Complementary and alternative medicine may be legal to sell - but is it ethical to sell?

/ February 11, 2016

The consumer lab rat: More questions about supplement safety

Do you take a vitamin or dietary supplement? Over half of all American adults do, making this a $30 billion dollar business. Many of us even take supplements in the absence of any clear medical or health need. I’m often told it’s a form of nutritional “insurance” or it’s being taken for some presumed beneficial effect – like Steven Novella outlined in...

/ January 28, 2016
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Don’t drink hair bleach

Hydrogen peroxide is consumed and injected in alternative medicine practices as a sort of "cure all". Is there any evidence to back this up? And how safe is it to inject or consume?

/ January 14, 2016
Detoxification

The one thing you need to know before you detox

Before you start your New Year's detox, this one weird tip will save you time, money, and possibly your health.

/ December 31, 2015
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What’s in your Traditional Chinese Medicine?

What's in your Traditional Chinese Medicine? An Australian analysis of 26 products found 92% were contaminated with heavy metals, undeclared plants, pharmaceuticals, or even animals like the endangered snow leopard, cat, dog, rat and pit viper.

/ December 17, 2015

Holding the supplement industry to account: Can we learn from tobacco regulation?

A new paper compares the supplement industry to Big Tobacco and argues that states should use the same tactics to improve consumer safety and protection.

/ December 3, 2015
Iridology

Australian review finds no benefit to 17 natural therapies

Health care systems around the world are being pressured to “do more and spend less”, to make healthcare more cost effective. Owing to aging populations and the growing cost of providing health services, there’s more scrutiny than ever on the value of different health treatments, with the goal of reducing the use of treatments that don’t help. The Choosing Wisely initiative was...

/ November 19, 2015

The horrible consequences of seeking “natural” immunity: Naturopathy and Whooping Cough

If there’s one area of “alternative” medicine that saddens (and angers) me, it’s the antivaccine movement. Most alternative medicine only risks harm to the user. But antivaccinationists threaten public health. Their actions can harm the most vulnerable in our society – often children, and others who depend on the herd immunity that vaccination provides. After my last few naturopathy vs. science posts...

/ November 5, 2015