Home remedies or traditional medicines are sometimes just what we need. But sometimes people take the idea of alternative medicine a little too far, and come up with all sorts of bizarre theories.
These Redditors shared the strangest ideas they’ve heard, some amusing and some eye-opening. Let’s all be extra grateful for modern-day medicine today.
[Sources listed at the end of the article.]
My best friend has been quite sick for a few weeks, and she sees a homeopathic doctor.
She was telling me about how the doctor diagnosed her by telling her to hold her thumb and middle finger tips together, and the doctor would hold a bottle of “medicine” up to my friend’s chest while trying to pull the two fingers apart. This way, she could figure out which medicine “made her stronger.”
A friend’s dad is a motivational speaker and health guru. He required that you pay him $50,000 a pop for each lecture he gives on simple living, and that’s not counting the hotels and airfare.
He also owns a couple of nice motorcycles, a house in Hawaii and is on wife #3.
My wife and I were invited over to our neighbors’ house for dinner one evening. After dinner they asked if we wanted to watch one of their New Age DVDs of some guy talking about spiritual enlightenment. We were their guests so we said, “Sure.”
It started with this guy saying that one day he breathed out his own soul and breathed in the soul of some 10,000 year old shaman who took partial possession of his body. He described this for about an hour, then went on about how humans don’t need the tops of our heads. Meaning that we could just cut off the top and let our brains be exposed because then we would be able to experience the world as it was meant to be.
My cousin once pulled a small felt bag out of his pocket, took out a crystal about the size of a golf ball and randomly told my family that it helps absorb negative energy. I had to go into the next room to stifle my snort.
A woman I knew said that food cooking in a pot should always be stirred clockwise. She said that it would taste much better when you stir in harmony with the direction of the universe.
My dad told me that he drove to another town to get a “spiritual treatment” today. The idea is that you go into a room by yourself, and some guru beams a laser with “healing energy” at you from another room. Like, I really just wanna hear the doctor’s explanation for why they have to be in another room to do that.
The funny thing about that kind of New Age-y stuff is that, as much I know it isn’t true, never believed in it, I just… kinda like it.
I have no proof it will work, and certainly don’t expect it to but I find it occasionally interesting. Usually there is some cool back-story to the item. My wallet carries a small chunk of rock given to me by my mum to bring wealth, and my backpack has a jade-rock frog (also from mum) hanging from it for protection while traveling. Sure its a bit silly, but i like to think it a ‘+2 Frog of Protection’ like in a video game, because why not?
As an aerospace engineering student and free-time astromechanics Wikipedia reader, I can tell you that nothing happens when two everyday objects “align” with each other. Oh, what happens if I align this ring on my desk and my fingernail clippers? Nothing. That’s what happens.
I told my friend I had an iron deficiency, and she told me I should get a salt lamp. Sure they look nice, but I really don’t think heating up a big piece of salt will somehow put more iron in my blood.
This happened to my Mom. On the day of her own mother’s funeral, her cousin’s wife (who is super New Age-y) came up to her and said, “Don’t worry, I spoke to your mother this morning, and she’s fine.”
Which was a brutal thing to say to her given that, not only does everyone in the family know that she doesn’t believe in that sort of thing, it also implied that her mother would rather talk to her cousin’s wife than her own child. As if that would somehow make her feel better!
I saw an episode of a show about a woman who ate sun for its nutritional value. As in, not just getting some time outside to absorb Vitamin D. Like she would actually stand outside for hours in direct sunlight and not eat food.
My friend once told me she stopped eating meat because, “Animals didn’t eat other animals until they saw humans do it first.”
Not a story but an explanation, as this is how many homeopathic doctors brew medicine.
They start with a common herb like Milk Thistle, for example, which is used to “cure” the common cold. If you were a homeopathic doctor, you would boil the Milk Thistle, mash it, or stick it in a stew, which you would then mix a small amount into a huge amount of water. If you were a homeopathic doctor, you would be saying to yourself, “Great. I have a 1x solution. I need to make this STRONGER.”
What you would do next, is take 1 part of the solution you just made, and put it in 100 parts of water. That is 2x. Most of what they sell is 3x, which means you repeat that process one more time. In homeopathic theory, the less of something you have that causes something, the stronger the medicine. So, after many filterings of this solution, you could have just plain, pure water, and it would be the STRONGEST MEDICINE IN THE WORLD.
I knew a girl in college that was vegetarian, but she would eat eggs as long as they were baked or cooked into some other product (like not just scrambled or hard-boiled).
I asked her why and she told me that by visibly eating the young of another mother, it would damage her chances of motherhood. She believe eating an egg would make her infertile… spiritually. I decided not to tell her that the eggs we eat are unfertilized and don’t contain a baby chick.
A friend told me he was grocery shopping with his wife and her sister. The sister was taking forever, because she was picking up everything, and staring at things intently.
He thought she was reading the nutrition facts, but was holding things so close to her face, he told his wife that her sister really needs glasses.
His wife told him that she wasn’t reading anything. She was trying to pick up on the energy of the food. She only chose food that felt good, that gave off a positive, harmonic energy that reacted with her body.
Almost every word spoken by my mother-in-law is about New Age, crystal, magic number, lizard people, UFO, reborn-as-an-angel horseradish.
Good thing she part-owns my house, and I’m completely financially dependent on her whims. #winning.
I’ve always been annoyed by my brother’s friend who didn’t grow up as a Rastafarian but claims to be one. He just likes smoking pot and thinks the Jamaican flag is cool.
A lady at the dog park saw me on my lofstrand crutches and asked me why I needed them. I had neurological damage from lupus.
She told me to take large doses of turmeric and to get hold of some crystals and I would be cured.
I was raised by parents who were very much into New Age medicine.
My Mom believed I was the reincarnation of a dead relative. So she never got to know me. She was waiting for me to remember who I “really” am.
Not that I’m bitter.
Later, she thought I was an alien.
I guess I’m a little bitter.
I once saw a video where Alejandro Jodorowsky (director of trippy movies) demonstrated his own form of psychotherapy (he calls it “psychomagic”). He “solved” a woman’s depression problem by asking her about her family tree and then making up a bunch of stuff to explain everything. It went something like this:
AJ: What’s your mother’s name?
AJ: AHA! It’s a female form of a male name! Her parents obviously wanted a son, not a daughter, so the frustration carried on to you, that’s why you’re depressed.
My roommate had to have his wisdom teeth removed a couple of months ago. While he was talking about it, a coworker of his said if he had been brushing his teeth with coconut oil that they wouldn’t have needed to do that.
I work at a natural history store that sells crystals. I’ve noticed some people are using crystals in lieu of going to a doctor and it’s really concerning. They’ll say something like, “I have a pain in my joints, what crystal will help?” I tell them to see a doctor, since I don’t want to be responsible for someone who’s truly sick and tries to fix it with quartz.
I’ve considered whether we should just get rid of them, but at the same time, not only are they scientifically interesting, they’re also one of our best-selling items…
I’m a trained Paramedic so I have some basic medical knowledge and I remember going to a “Metaphysical Fitness Fair” in Colorado once, thinking it would be fun.
And it was. I went to a crystal seller and said I was getting a lot of pain in my calf muscles because of stretching my legs while asleep, and asked what they had for that as sort of a joke. They sold me two crystals for a few dollars and told me to keep them in my pillow when I slept. The honest truth: I never got the pain again while those crystals were in my pillow. I’d never under any circumstance rely wholly on holistic medicine, but the “placebo effect” is a powerful thing.
My mom was into new age stuff. One time, I came home from school and found her piling all the red items in our house in the middle of the living room. She told me that she “didn’t have room in her life for anger anymore” and that “red is an angry color.”
I tried to tell her that 1. anger is a regular human emotion and that completely banishing it is impossible and probably unhealthy and 2. that colors might reflect certain emotions in our culture, but red is not just the color of anger, it’s also the color of passion and love. In the end I was able to negotiate with her to let me keep my favorite mug and a sheet set as long as they stayed in my room.
One of my friends from college went to see a homeopathic doctor when we were living together because her father was into that stuff. Her stomach was bothering her, and we had been binge drinking a lot at the time so OBVIOUSLY HER STOMACH WAS HURTING. When she saw the doctor, he told her it was hurting because she was holding grudges against people.
An instructor in one of my massage therapy classes told me after class one day that gravity is just a theory. If you focus hard enough you could walk off a cliff and not fall.
He also said that if you focused all of your cells’ energy you could teleport through walls.
I tried to explain what gravity actually was but it was wasted breath.