All posts by Harriet Hall

Harriet Hall, MD also known as The SkepDoc, is a retired family physician who writes about pseudoscience and questionable medical practices. She received her BA and MD from the University of Washington, did her internship in the Air Force (the second female ever to do so),  and was the first female graduate of the Air Force family practice residency at Eglin Air Force Base. During a long career as an Air Force physician, she held various positions from flight surgeon to DBMS (Director of Base Medical Services) and did everything from delivering babies to taking the controls of a B-52. She retired with the rank of Colonel.  In 2008 she published her memoirs, .

The Trans Fat 51-Day Half-Life Myth

Various websites repeat the myth that trans fats are slowly metabolized, with a 51-day half-life. There is no evidence for that claim.

/ August 7, 2018

Cowabunga! Can Cow Therapy Cure Cancer?

A hospital in India offers to cure cancer in 11 days with Ayurveda and cow therapy, giving patients a drink of desi cow milk, yogurt, ghee, urine, and dung. It's very unlikely that cow therapy can cure cancer; but in another sense, the author of the book Holy Cancer says it "healed" him.

/ July 31, 2018

NES Health: Tooth Fairy Marketing

NES Health claims to scan the human biofield, detect imbalances, and correct them with infoceuticals. It's not science, it's clever marketing based on fantasy.

/ July 24, 2018

Coffee Enemas: A Latte Nonsense

A humorous take on coffee enemas.

/ July 17, 2018

Aloe Vera

Many claims are made for the health benefits of aloe vera, used both topically and orally. The scientific evidence is lacking.

/ July 10, 2018

How Naturopaths Treat Heart Disease

Naturopaths claim to excel at preventing and treating cardiovascular disease. Their claims don't stand up to scrutiny. They co-opt from mainstream medicine, add non-evidence-based treatments, and fail to use effective drugs.

/ July 3, 2018

How We Believe

James Alcock's new book about belief is a masterpiece that explains how our minds work, how we form beliefs, and why they are so powerful. It amounts to a course in psychology and an owner's manual for the brain.

/ June 26, 2018

H.O.P.E.: A Movie Promoting Veganism

H.O.P.E., a movie promoting veganism, is short on science and long on appeals to emotion.

/ June 19, 2018

Do Sunscreens Cause Cancer?

Elizabeth Plourde thinks sunscreens cause cancer rather than preventing it. She blames sunscreens for everything from coral reef die-offs to autism. Neither her evidence nor her reasoning stand up to scrutiny.

/ June 12, 2018