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Tags rescue remedy , homeopathy , alternative medicine , boots

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Old 12th November 2006, 03:37 PM   #1
Zamzara
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What's the deal with Rescue Remedy?

I heard an ad on Captial FM (UK Radio) the other day for Boots, advertising Rescue Remedy. They made some very bold claims, along the lines of 'to cure anxiety or tension place a few drops on your tongue and you'll feel better at once' (I'm paraphrasing a little, but that was the claim.)

I have looked for information on it and I have seen it vaguely described as homeopathic, but I can't find detailed ingredients. I'm considering a complaint to Advertising Standards as usually a claim like that required clear documentary evidence of truth for the ad to be allowable. As far as I'm aware the new pro-homeopathy legislation isn't in force yet, so they might be in breech of the old laws on claiming effectiveness too.

Does anyone know if I'm right, and what I can do?
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Old 12th November 2006, 03:48 PM   #2
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Rescue Remedy is mostly alcohol, so it's actually pretty close to the truth, albeit for reasons other than their stated ones. Neat brandy has much the same effect, it will calm you down if you want it to.

ETA: I seem to recall it's about 60% alcohol but I will try and verify that.

ETA2: It is made by floating the flowers in water then adding the water to brandy. WOOOOO!

Last edited by tkingdoll; 12th November 2006 at 03:59 PM.
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Old 12th November 2006, 03:55 PM   #3
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It's a Bach Flower remedy, so, not truly homeopathic although it's still b******t.

http://www.skepdic.com/bachflower.html
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Old 12th November 2006, 04:46 PM   #4
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Is it cheaper than brandy in terms of liters of brandy per unit of currency? It may in fact be a solid investment, but I doubt it.
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Old 12th November 2006, 05:27 PM   #5
tkingdoll
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Originally Posted by CBVan View Post
Is it cheaper than brandy in terms of liters of brandy per unit of currency? It may in fact be a solid investment, but I doubt it.
Hell no. It's about £6 per bottle. A miniature of brandy (twice the amount of the Bachs bottle) is about £1.50.
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Old 12th November 2006, 05:30 PM   #6
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A lot of the cat breeders I know, swear by Rescue Remedy. Drunk cats. That's a good idea.
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Old 12th November 2006, 05:43 PM   #7
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Horse people use it too on horses, and one of the vets I go to has started using it in the office on the various animals (it's both a large and small animal practice). Sometimes I feel like the whole world is losing its mind.....
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Old 12th November 2006, 07:48 PM   #8
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I think it is 27 or 29% alcohol.

Rescue Remedy is so woo it's like a parody of woo. In my innocence I thought that I could explain to someone how RR was made and what the thought behind it was, and that person would instantly see how silly it was.
Alas, not so.

Edward Bach decided which flowers would help which mental symptoms by imagining himself to be in a negative mental state and then holding his hand over a flower to see how that changed the way he felt.
His choices of which plant affected which symptom are heavily sympathetic magic.
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Old 13th November 2006, 12:38 AM   #9
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It's what you might call "strong" homeopathy.

AKA excreta tauri

ETA: Hey, I wonder if we could make a 30C homeopathic micture of excreta tauri and have it "officially proven" (homeo-aware folks will know what this means!)
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Old 13th November 2006, 12:48 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Zep View Post
It's what you might call "strong" homeopathy.

AKA excreta tauri

ETA: Hey, I wonder if we could make a 30C homeopathic micture of excreta tauri and have it "officially proven" (homeo-aware folks will know what this means!)
Depends on whether or not you keep the containers clean so that none of the "mother tincture" contaminates the 30C dilution. If you can do that, I'm up for drinking the 30C in liter bottles.
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Old 13th November 2006, 12:53 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by MortFurd View Post
Depends on whether or not you keep the containers clean so that none of the "mother tincture" contaminates the 30C dilution. If you can do that, I'm up for drinking the 30C in liter bottles.
Then we won't be getting anyone at the NCH Pakistan laboratories to make it...!
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Old 13th November 2006, 01:58 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by tkingdoll View Post
Rescue Remedy is mostly alcohol, so it's actually pretty close to the truth, albeit for reasons other than their stated ones. Neat brandy has much the same effect, it will calm you down if you want it to.

ETA: I seem to recall it's about 60% alcohol but I will try and verify that.
Interesting. I suspect the ASA would definitely have some issues with brandy being promoted as a cure for anxiety. I'm going ahead with the complant. Thanks everyone, I'll update this if I hear anything.
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Old 13th November 2006, 04:11 PM   #13
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The folks at Mothering are all about Rescue Remedy for their pets, and in some cases I've seen it suggested for fussy babies. Which is pretty much all I need to know - if MDC people think it's wonderful, it's probably the woo-ist woo that ever woo'd.
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Old 14th November 2006, 05:55 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Zamzara View Post
Interesting. I suspect the ASA would definitely have some issues with brandy being promoted as a cure for anxiety. I'm going ahead with the complant. Thanks everyone, I'll update this if I hear anything.
From their FAQ the mixtures contain "27% Grape Brandy as a preservative", that's a little over 5ml per bottle of unknown strength (I'd guess less than 30% ABV) alcohol.

The other thing to have a look at is the recommended dosage - 4 drops in a glass of water 4 times a day. That's not enough to get an insect drunk
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Old 14th November 2006, 06:03 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Mongrel View Post

The other thing to have a look at is the recommended dosage - 4 drops in a glass of water 4 times a day. That's not enough to get an insect drunk
They also recommend putting it neat on the tongue. As a lifetime tee-totaller, having tried RR, I can assure you that it has a tangible effect, and I can onyl assume it would have the same effect on a child or animal with a similarly alcohol-free life.

I've never tried it in water though.
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Old 14th November 2006, 06:14 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Zep View Post
Hey, I wonder if we could make a 30C homeopathic micture of excreta tauri and have it "officially proven" (homeo-aware folks will know what this means!)
If it were to be prepared by homoeopaths there would certainly be plenty in the final 30C preparation, albeit introduced as a contaminant during the dilution process rather than from the MT.
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Old 14th November 2006, 08:54 AM   #17
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The flower remedies are different from homeopathetic remedies in that they aren't supposed to work because of real or memory traces of the herbal content of the flowers. they are supposed to work solely by vibrations from the flowers transferred to the water. If I understand this correctly, it would mean that any molecular traces extracted from the original flowers (or memories of extracted molecules) would be irrelevant to the remedies' function. This is a whole woo step beyond homeopathic remedies, which at least dabble it pseudoscience. Rescue Remedy goes straight to vibrations.

However some of the remedies, the ones made with twigs, are IIRC, boiled in water for a while to extract the vibrations. The flowers OTOH are floated on the surface of a clear bowl of water in the sun. But no molecular traces are supposedly in the remedy. or if they are, they play no part in the supposed mechanism for the remdies.

(The brandy is a preservative for the water; it is not used to extract the flowers.)
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Old 14th November 2006, 10:20 AM   #18
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All I know is that it did sweet FA for my cat when we took her on an (unavoidable) 8 hour car journey. I didn't think to question the VET when she prescribed it. Bloody woo vets.
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Old 15th November 2006, 07:32 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by Zamzara View Post
Interesting. I suspect the ASA would definitely have some issues with brandy being promoted as a cure for anxiety. I'm going ahead with the complant. Thanks everyone, I'll update this if I hear anything.
The ASA are toothless.

Here are some other ideas:

Get the exact words and go to the MHRA, http://www.mhra.gov.uk/ It is illegal to make false medicinal claims and this is much more stringent than the ASA.

Also, if the claims are untrue and dangerous, by virtue of the alcohol, the trading standards office where the company has its headquarters is one to go to.

If they have any sense, the actual words used will not say quite what you think they said, but they will have been carfeully drafted to create in the listener exactly the impression that you gained.
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Old 15th November 2006, 07:38 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by flume View Post
The flower remedies are different from homeopathetic remedies in that they aren't supposed to work because of real or memory traces of the herbal content of the flowers. they are supposed to work solely by vibrations from the flowers transferred to the water. If I understand this correctly, it would mean that any molecular traces extracted from the original flowers (or memories of extracted molecules) would be irrelevant to the remedies' function. This is a whole woo step beyond homeopathic remedies, which at least dabble it pseudoscience. Rescue Remedy goes straight to vibrations.

However some of the remedies, the ones made with twigs, are IIRC, boiled in water for a while to extract the vibrations. The flowers OTOH are floated on the surface of a clear bowl of water in the sun. But no molecular traces are supposedly in the remedy. or if they are, they play no part in the supposed mechanism for the remdies.

(The brandy is a preservative for the water; it is not used to extract the flowers.)

In the Venn diagram in my head they overlap almost completely. Homs resort to "vibrations" when their remedies run out of molecules, either by dilution or because they didn't use a manageable chemical raw ingredient in the first place. Thus the hom remedy "positronium" was just held near a radiation source of some kind. I kid you not!

The flower fairies don't shake their water to potentise it, but they leave it in the light of the Sun or Moon. It is effectively a one-step hom remedy without the sequential dilution and shaking.

I find a shot of 29% ethanol will often rescue me.
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Old 15th November 2006, 07:59 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by Badly Shaved Monkey View Post
The flower fairies don't shake their water to potentise it, but they leave it in the light of the Sun or Moon. It is effectively a one-step hom remedy without the sequential dilution and shaking.
Just as good as homoeopathy then!
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Old 15th November 2006, 09:46 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by Mojo View Post
Just as good as homoeopathy then!
I am sure it is no less effective.
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Old 16th November 2006, 12:50 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by tkingdoll View Post
I've never tried it in water though.
Well then, fill the tub, climb in, try the WW, and report back!
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Old 19th January 2007, 04:07 AM   #24
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Well my complaint has been rejected by the ASA.

They said that the claims made have been approved by the MHRA.

I'm going to contact the MHRA and ask them what's going on.
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Old 19th January 2007, 04:41 AM   #25
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Ah well. Good luck with the MHRA, then. I thought they were just about making sure medicines were safe, but apparently they also make sure they work, which is interesting.
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Old 19th January 2007, 05:16 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by richardm View Post
Ah well. Good luck with the MHRA, then. I thought they were just about making sure medicines were safe, but apparently they also make sure they work, which is interesting.
They make sure they work, as long as they're not homeopathy, herbs, Chinese, old, traditional, new, quantum, crystals or magnetic*. Good luck getting anywhere with them.

*Disclaimer : This may not be an exhaustive list. In fact, the MHRA will now approve pretty much anything as long as it isn't conventional or real medicine.
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Old 19th January 2007, 05:27 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by Badly Shaved Monkey View Post
In the Venn diagram in my head they overlap almost completely. Homs resort to "vibrations" when their remedies run out of molecules, either by dilution or because they didn't use a manageable chemical raw ingredient in the first place. Thus the hom remedy "positronium" was just held near a radiation source of some kind. I kid you not!

The flower fairies don't shake their water to potentise it, but they leave it in the light of the Sun or Moon. It is effectively a one-step hom remedy without the sequential dilution and shaking.

I find a shot of 29% ethanol will often rescue me.
Just think what 95% ethanol would do for you then!!!(Don't try this at home, kids!!)
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