Homeopathy is a nontoxic form of medicine that was developed approximately 200 years ago by Dr. Samuel Hahnemann. The word homeopathy is derived from two words: homoios meaning similars and pathos meaning suffering. Homeopathy is a form of medicine that uses highly diluted pathogens or other potentially toxic substances as remedies. These remedies provoke healing responses in a person’s immune system, or provoke other body responses to treat the root causes of illnesses.
The theory behind homeopathy is based on the law of similars. “Like cures like.” In the 1700’s, Peruvian bark (also known as chincona or china) was used to treat malaria. The healing power of Peruvian bark was thought to be due to its bitter taste. Dr. Hahnemann disagreed with this conclusion and experimented on himself. He ingested the bark to evaluate its effects. Eventually, he developed fevers and chills, symptoms typical of malaria. Dr. Hahnemann theorized that because the bark produced symptoms similar to malaria, taking a small amount of the bark would stimulate the body to heal itself of malaria.