Complementary and alternative medicine Friday Woo Medicine Quackery Skepticism/critical thinking

Your Friday Dose of Woo: Woo ascends

Let’s face it, energy woo can get boring. It’s always “resonance this” and “vibration that,” to the point that it all starts to sound the same. Such is the reason that I’ve become somewhat reluctant to take on more energy woo for Your Friday Dose of Woo. It takes a truly bizarre bit of energy woo to get me interested anymore, and this has me worried that either (1) I’m running out of woo (probably not a problem, as the Woo Folder is still pretty full) or (2) I need to diversify the woo, so to speak. This brings me to a little housekeeping about Your Friday Dose of Woo. It occurs to me that it’s been almost a year since, on a whim, I started YFDoW. Little did I suspect that it would take on a life of its own, almost like my blog mascot or the Hitler Zombie. Indeed, the very first YFDoW installment, and still one of the best I’ve ever done (in my opinion) was the one on quantum homeopathy, and it appeared on June 30, 2006.

Given the impending first anniversary of YFDoW, I’ve been thinking about how to do it up for either June 22 (the 52nd YFDoW and last of the first year) or June 29 (the first of the new year). I have what I consider to be a pretty good idea in mind, and I hope it will amaze and astound, much as the most bizarre woo here amazes and astounds (or leaves the reader scratching his head). In addition, I’m looking for victims–I mean topics–for the second year, and I encourage readers to e-mail them to me.

And now back to the energy woo. As I was saying, it has to be really fine woo these days to pique my interest, and this certainly fills the bill. Suggested by a reader, it actually left me wondering what sort of “herbs” these people were smoking when they came up with this. In fact, I think we may have found a competitor for the ever-woo-ey Life Technology, whose products have been featured at least twice on YFDoW. The company? Ascended Health, which offers–surprise, surprise!–“energetic healing products.” After reading about some of its products, all I can say to Life Technology is: “Watch out, there’s a new woo-meister in town.”

Here is how the company is described:

Ascended Health is a small, church-based company administered out of San Mateo, California. Our trans-denominational, health education church has a foundational belief of living life free of unnatural substances and of practicing health care based on natural laws of healing.

It is our belief that God and Universal Source has given us all we need to heal ourselves right here on earth. We just need to find them and put them in combinations that are powerful and really work. Will they work for you? We don’t know and can’t promise that. We only ask that you give our products a try. If you don’t like them, return them and get money back. It is as simple as that.

Our products are no different than others offered in the market place, except we put healing vibrations into ours. We are very conscious of the intentions we are holding at every step of the process of mixing our recipes. From inception to mixing to packaging, we put our healing intentions into the product. The vibrations we place into the product is so important, we even put them on our labels. Each product comes with sacred geometry embedded in the label.

I love the disclaimer. They can’t “promise” that their products will work for. The best part of all is how they trumpet how their products are no different from others–except that htey put healing vibrations in! Shades of Dr. Emoto! And, of course, they are quick to assure us that no animals are used to test their products. Imagine my relief! I’d hate to see some poor dog or bunny rabbit subject to the powerful “healing vibrational intent” that they put into their products unless its absolutely necessary. But don’t worry about it, because not only is Ascended Health religious and animal-friendly, but they are very upfront about the fact that they’re not making any “claims”:

We do not claim anything regarding our products other than your satisfaction. Our products are to be used at your own discretion. While we state our beliefs of what we think these products will do, they simply are our beliefs of what we have designed the products to do – they are not claims. We have to stress that nothing on this web site, including the testimonials, can be construed to mean any claim to treatment, diagnosis or curing of disease. Your results can and will vary.

That’s good to know.

So, what do they not “claim” about their products? Well, first, they do not “claim” that their products are all infused with the “healing power of Lemurian crystal energy.” Here’s what they “do not claim” about how they make their products:

Through resonant vibrational frequency, we strive to give them [our remedies] a life of their own – a consciousness with the sole intention of giving you what you have been missing. Rather than give you products with amazing ingredients in pretty packaging, we focus on putting out a product with vibrational frequencies (e.g. light energy) embedded in them. We view our products as nothing less than elixirs of vibrational energy that magnetize to specific parts of your body and resonate it to a state of rejuvenation and regeneration.

For this reason, we place special attention to anything that can affect the vibrational frequency of our elixirs and remedies – including the way the products are mixed, packaged and labled. As you see above, we even label our products with sacred geometry and words (Google: Dr. Emoto Messages from Water).

I knew Dr. Emoto had to be involved somehow, even if just as the inspiration! Even better, though, they start going all science-y on us. Behold, nutrigenomic supplements:

In our view, Nutrigenomics is not about being resigned to what we have as DNA and conforming our life around it – we can actually change and dictate what parts of our DNA gets activated through vibrational frequency brought about by foods carrying certain energies. Depending on the foods we eat and the nutrients that actually cross the cell wall, we believe that we can activate regenerative DNA using “super-charged” micro-nutrients, conscious thought and emotional intention.

If you think of it as a car, the nutrients are the engine, the conscious thought is the driver and the emotional intention is the gas. Together, they form a vector that can move mountains or overcome disease.

For example, many people who refuse to succumb to cancer (e.g. Lance Armstrong), don’t. While it is possible that the chemotherapeutic poisons poured into his body to kill off the cancer cells could have saved him alone, we are willing to bet that without his emotional makeup, his genetic makeup never would have made the jump to recovery.

“While it is possible”? What is it with “intent” and these woo-meisters? On the other hand, they do show “evidence” of how they “charge” their the phytoplankton used to make their nutritional supplements, namely “before and after” photomicrographs around the “energization” of the elixir:

i-4b6e0b5650a51357f758a8def027edf0-img_phytoplankton_normal_144x134.jpg i-be3d85d1196f776aa3745c5f4e29bc90-img_phytoplankton_supercharged_144x134.jpg

I don’t know about you, but I’m convinced. Look at the scalar energy, man!

Now, this website, like that of Life Technology, has so much woo in it that I could easily mine it for material for a few weeks. However, I think I’ll just–shall we say?–cherry pick favored bits of woo. For example, one prominent product is a that “does not claim” to be an effective treatment for the bite of the brown recluse spider. Now, there’s no doubt that the bite of the brown recluse spider is nasty. Although death is rare, the spider makes a toxin that causes extensive tissue death, and the website is festooned with pictures of disgusting wounds claimed to be due to the bite of this spider. Usually the treatment is local wound care and the application of products to try to minimize the amount of tissue damage that occurs. Sometimes a plastic surgeon is needed to debride the dead tissue and raise a skin or muscle flap to cover the open wound. That’s not great, but it works. However, according to Ascending Health, you don’t need all that. No, they have the balm that’ll not only neutralize all the spider venom, but speed healing. At least so they “do not claim”:

Ascended Health’s Brown Recluse Spider Bite Treatment is a powerful synergistic mixture of special natural magnetic minerals and oils designed to inactivate poisons, fight infection and regenerate the dead necrotic skin tissue…

These oils have been imprinted with the universal healing frequency of 728 Hz using a modified Lakhovsky/Tesla multi-wave generator embedded with oscillators made from large double-tipped lemurian crystal mined from Minas Gerais, Brazil.

Just consider that last sentence for a moment. Consider the utterly concentrated woo that is in this sentence. For one thing, why 728 Hz? Why not 1,024 Hz or some other frequency? And what the hell is a lemurian crystal, anyway? They do seem to pop up on a lot of “healing” websites. Be that as it may, here’s why you should believe that this balm works:

Don’t believe the websites that say there isn’t an effective treatment! If you are a licensed medical practitioner and wish to conduct clinical trials, please contact us for our product. We are experienced molecular biologists trained in the scientific method from the University of Michigan School of Medicine and Michigan State University, Dept. of Microbiology.

The University of Michigan School of Medicine? Nooooooooo! Say it ain’t so! Not my alma mater! Not the medical school I attended! I know that U. of M. has become a too accommodating of woo of late, but I find it hard to believe that even the CAM faculty at U. of M. would buy into this stuff.

The pain, the pain.

Of course, if you haven’t been bitten by a brown recluse spider, you could always detoxify yourself and thereby cure your gum disease with the Organic Regenerative Elixir or even treat highly resistant staph infections with Ascending Health’s balms and Electrical Neo-Pulser “specifically programmed against multiple staph frequencies” (and a bargain at only #339.15, I might add). Get a load of how it’s “not claimed” to work:

Our findings is that the effects of these harmful bacteria seem to be inactivated with a constant flow of subtle, orgone-charged electricity – at least 6-8 HOURS worth of consistant flow for days at a time. Secondly, our bodies are electrical – it can take a continuous flow of low current electricity, as long as it doesn’t harm or bother us. With this box, you can barely notice the current, but with our modifications, the FREQUENCY and the STATE of the current are changed in such a way that the end result seems to be lethal to the effects of the Staph Infection. Most likely, it is a combination of immobilization of the bug and enhancement of the immune system from our balm & oil.

This unit is modified from the original model with a State of the Art Integrated Computer Chip that pulses at proprietary frequencies specific for the new strains of Antibiotic Resistant Staph Bacteria. The chip is made by an engineer at KLA Tencor with a set of discrete harmonic frequencies that we have designed.

This little device is about the size of a cigarette box and is designed to be strapped onto the outside of your leg, just below the knee. This is a sacred chakra-like point that denotes longevity.

I really like that last rationale about why the device should be strapped to the leg, just below the knee. It’s priceless.

Unfortunately, it occurs to me if you’ve been bitten by a brown recluse spider now (or if you have a resistant staph infection that needs not just the Zapper–I mean Neo-Pulser–but also the special anti-staph healing balms), you’re out of luck, as this NOTICE states:

Starting May 27, 2007, all orders will be shipped after July 1, 2007.

We are harvesting lemurian crystals, sacred healing earth and organic Amazon botanicals in Machu Picchu, Peru. We apologize for the inconvenience, but this is the basis of activation for our products.


By Orac

Orac is the nom de blog of a humble surgeon/scientist who has an ego just big enough to delude himself that someone, somewhere might actually give a rodent's posterior about his copious verbal meanderings, but just barely small enough to admit to himself that few probably will. That surgeon is otherwise known as David Gorski.

That this particular surgeon has chosen his nom de blog based on a rather cranky and arrogant computer shaped like a clear box of blinking lights that he originally encountered when he became a fan of a 35 year old British SF television show whose special effects were renowned for their BBC/Doctor Who-style low budget look, but whose stories nonetheless resulted in some of the best, most innovative science fiction ever televised, should tell you nearly all that you need to know about Orac. (That, and the length of the preceding sentence.)

DISCLAIMER:: The various written meanderings here are the opinions of Orac and Orac alone, written on his own time. They should never be construed as representing the opinions of any other person or entity, especially Orac's cancer center, department of surgery, medical school, or university. Also note that Orac is nonpartisan; he is more than willing to criticize the statements of anyone, regardless of of political leanings, if that anyone advocates pseudoscience or quackery. Finally, medical commentary is not to be construed in any way as medical advice.

To contact Orac: [email protected]

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