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Bad science Medicine Popular culture Pseudoscience Skepticism/critical thinking

Penn Jillette interviews water fast guru Dr. Michael Klaper. Woo ensues.

Dr. Michael Klaper advocates a plant-based “whole food” diet and water fasts as the cure for what ails you, with demonstrably overblown claims for the benefits of such practices and invocation of nonsense “detoxification”? Yet Penn Jillette gave him a friendly forum on his podcast. Where did the Penn of “Penn & Teller: Bullshit!” go? Here we examine Dr. Klaper’s claims and find them weak on science.

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Antivaccine nonsense Complementary and alternative medicine Homeopathy Medicine Naturopathy Popular culture Pseudoscience Quackery Skepticism/critical thinking

Are Gwyneth Paltrow and Goop winning against skeptics?

The ubiquity of quackery and pseudoscience of the sort epitomized by Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop empire can be depressing if you’re a skeptic. Sometimes it feels as though it’s not worth refuting the nonsense she peddles. But it is. Just maybe not in the way you think.

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Antivaccine nonsense Autism Cancer Complementary and alternative medicine Homeopathy Medicine Naturopathy Quackery

The scam of “detox”: Ritual purification by another name

“You need to detox.” How many times have you heard or read this? Maybe a friend of yours suggested it for the New Year. Maybe you saw it on a website, in a magazine, or as part of an ad. I like to say sometimes, “Toujours les toxines,” because in many branches of alternative medicine […]

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Antivaccine nonsense Autism Complementary and alternative medicine Medicine Pseudoscience Quackery Science Skepticism/critical thinking

What “functional medicine” really is

I’ve frequently written about a form of medicine often practiced by those who bill themselves as practicing “complementary and alternative medicine” (CAM) or “integrative medicine” (or, as I like to refer to it, “integrating” quackery with medicine). I’m referring to something called “functional medicine” or, sometimes, “functional wellness.” Over the years, I’ve tried to explain […]

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Cancer Complementary and alternative medicine Medicine Pseudoscience Quackery Science Skepticism/critical thinking

The deadly false hope of German cancer clinics, part 2: Metastasizing to Australia and beyond

Yesterday, I wrote about alternative medicine clinics in Germany that offer a combination of alternative cancer cures plus experimental therapeutics administered improperly outside the auspices of a clinical trial. In particular, I discussed two cases. The first was British actress Leah Bracknell, who is raising money to go to one of these alternative cancer clinics […]