Is your doctor open to alternative medicine?...The rest of the column is about turmeric — the spice — and after a fair amount of blather, you get to this:
Research shows that despite longstanding resistance, alternative medicine is gaining ground in some doctors’ offices too. A study by Harvard Medical School in May found that one in 30 Americans — as many as six million people — used an alternative therapy after a doctor recommended it, and a recent report in the journal Health Services Research found that doctors and nurses are increasingly likely to try alternative or complementary medicines themselves.
But what are doctors using, and which alternative and complementary medicines would they trust enough to recommend to a patient or use in their practice? In a new occasional series, Well will talk to doctors around the country to find out what nontraditional medicines or therapies they sometimes recommend or use themselves.
A study published in The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine in 2009 compared the active ingredient in turmeric, curcumin, with ibuprofen for pain relief in 107 people with knee osteoarthritis. The curcumin eased pain and improved function about as well as the ibuprofen....So, there is a specific chemical and it's been studied and proven effective. As the 3d comment over there says: "With that scientific proof it is not alternative therapy."
The NYT is prompting readers to "open" themselves to the intriguing possibilities of "alternative medicine." But the effectiveness of curcumin as a pain reliever proves nothing more generally about an alternative path in medicine. People get the idea that something works or doesn't work and if that observation is verified through science, it's not alternative anymore. Study all the "alternative medicine" remedies and decide whether they are real or fake. Quit grouping the real and the fake together. Do science. Why is that difficult? Who is the NYT coddling and conning here? It's disgusting.