The Difference between "Natural Remedies" and "Homeopathy"

It’s not a big pet peeve by any means, but the peeve is still there.

I cringe just a little inside my head when I hear statements like this:

  • “I used apple cider vinegar on a bee sting and it really helped! I love homeopathy!”
  • “Over the counter homeopathy isn’t 100% safe, for example, what if your baby drank a bottle of wintergreen oil?”
  • “I love going to the farmer’s market to get our homeopathic cough medicine. (Raw honey.)”

Because none of those things are examples of homeopathy.

  • Apple cider vinegar on a bee sting can work awesome, but it’s not homeopathy. A homeopathic remedy for a bee sting would be something like Ledum 30X  or Apis 30C.
  • Wintergreen oil is a very potent essential oil. I won’t even own it because, while it certainly has its uses, I don’t want something that toxic in my house. A bottle of wintergreen essential oil could kill a child. But essential oils aren’t homeopathy. And while OTC homeopathic remedies print “100% safe. No Side Effects!” on their boxes,  no one ever claimed essential oils had no side effects.
  • I also love raw honey. It is great for actually soothing and healing sore throats and coughs, but it isn’t a homeopathic remedy. A homeopathic remedy for a sore throat could be something like Phosphorus 30X or even a blended Hyland’s Cold Remedy.

Homeopathy is a kind of natural remedy. But not all natural remedies are homeopathic. I’m not pointing this out to be snooty, just so that we’re all on the same page.  I really think that all kind of natural remedies will end up being the way to health in the near future, so we might as well get used to the terms now.

So, what makes something “Homeopathic?”

HHyland's Homeopathic Remedy Chestomeopathic remedies work through super intense dilution, succession (vigorous shaking that allows the substance to leave an imprint on the water it’s diluted in) and the Law of Similars. This combination causes our own body’s natural healing abilities to be stimulated. The remedy itself doesn’t actually heal anything. No chemical reaction is going off between an OTC homeopathic medicine and our bloodstream. With homeopathy, our body is just being tricked into healing itself.



  1. Ana

    You’re not snooty! Thank you for explaining this to me. I appreciate you explaining this to me and teaching me so… much. You are tryly God sent. I had no idea what homeopathy was.

    I grew up in a household where we only used natural remedies. Since the birth of my son I run to your website whenever I need help because I have a pretty good sense of how to heal a sore throat, but when it comes to a baby… well… I’m a bit lost. Last week he had a fever and because I read your blog on fevers I nervously & carefully watched him and put potatoes on his feet (cause thats what my mom told me to do, I don’t know if it helped). As long as I wasn’t shoving Ibuprofen or Acetaminophen down his throat, I was happy. Now I am nervously watching a sore that showed up on his bottom and I followed your suggested recipe (virgin coconut oil and clove oil) Although everyone is begging me to take him to the Ped., I am trying this remedy first (BTW it seems to be working, I’ll know more tomorrow.) I personally thank you so… very much for sharing your knowledge, for not being egoista (i dont know the word in English) and keeping it all to yourself. Many happy and positive everything to you and your family.

    • Dawn

      You know, since it’s on his butt and IF he can’t reach the area, I think I would try RAW honey even more than the clove. With little ones, I didn’t do honey because of perceived health risks, but if there’s no chance of ingesting, that is what I would do. Of course, I’m not ADVISING you in any way of course, just saying that’s what I would do if I were you. And if I did it (if I were you) I would be flabbergasted at how quickly it worked.

      Manuka honey would be even better, but can be hard to find right away. (Check health food stores, etc.)

  2. Dawn

    As a side note, another great thing for blemishes of the self-limiting type, (sorry I have to word things weird because of FDA marketing rules.) is the French Green Clay that crystal sells on the store site. It’s great to have on hand always. Less sticky than honey and can be applied where ever on a person’s body overnight… Here’s a link to it:

    A simple web search on the stuff would explain in detail all the things that I’m not allowed to say about it…

  3. Pingback: Hyland’s Teething Tablets Concerns Addressed, Again. — Everything Birth's Blog on Midwifery, Attachment Parenting, Cloth Diapers and More

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