A group of Swedish scientists, headed by astronaut Christer Funglesang, took a massive overdose of homeopathic sleeping pills in an attempt to discredit the alternative medicine and have it banned from the country.
Ten people, including Funglesang, took ten times the recommended dose of Coffea Alfaplex last week, but lived to tell the tale.
“We’re risking our lives for science,” wrote Fuglesang in an opinion piece for Swedish newspaper Svenska Dagbladet before the ‘suicide attempt’. “Either we die, and for the first time the effect of homeopathy will be proven, or we survive, in which case we expect Swedish politicians to rethink their stand on alternative medicine’s use in healthcare,” the piece continued.
The effort was supported by Vetenskap och Folkbildning (VoF), a non-profit organisation that works towards discrediting false science. Homeopathic medicine, which is widely used in Sweden, works on the principle that a remedy becomes stronger as it becomes more diluted with water. VoF believes there should be an outright ban on homeopathy, even though it is already illegal to treat some physical diseases, such as cancer, with the method.
“This is an important matter to debate, since the use of alternative medicine is so common in Sweden,” Dan Larhammar, Professor of Neuroscience at Uppsala University and active member of VoF, told The Local. “We hope the use of homeopathy will cease, seeing as how it’s pure humbug; and above all, the state and country councils should not stand behind such humbug,” he continued.