Mind over Medicine: Power of Placebo Effect to Cure Illness

We all fall sick. It is very important to fall sick at times. It keeps a check on your immune system.People with strong immune system heal faster whereas the people with immune system take longer. This strong immune system is a product of strong will power, the belief system. This healing process by belief system while taking medication is called Placebo Effect.

What is Placebo Effect?

Placebo Effect is a positive result (cure) obtained from patients belief system regardless of medication working or not on a particular illness. The power of Placebo Effect to cure Illness is not new but hidden from people to boost western medicine.

If you Google for “placebo effect”, the search result will be something like this:
placebo effect

We advise you to observe the last sentence. “orthodox doctors dismiss the positive results as a result of the placebo effect“. There is whole medical industry behind this. There are very few doctors who are creating awareness about Placebo Effect. If everyone starts learning Placebo Effect to cure their illnesses, most of the doctors and medical industry may suffer a deflation.

Placebo Etymology:
The word has come from late 18th century: from Latin, literally ‘I shall be acceptable or pleasing’, from placere ‘to please’.

When First experimented?

Henry Beecher discovered the placebo effect as a medic in World War II. After running out of pain-killing morphine, he replaced it with a simple saline solution but continued telling the wounded soldiers it was morphine to calm them. Wounded soldiers started to remain calm because of the belief they have been medicated with pain killer.

How does Placebo Effect work?

One of the most common theories is that the placebo effect is due to a person’s expectations. If a person expects a pill to do something, then it’s possible that the body’s own chemistry can cause effects similar to what a medication might have caused.

Suppose, you are suffering from fever. You consult a doctor. The doctor gives a prescription. You buy pills. The moment you take first you’ll start feeling better within minutes. How? This is just how Placebo Effect works. If you think in terms of chemistry, it takes four hours for the pill to get dissolved and get absorbed by the body to take effect. It is the Placebo starts to take effect before the medication has action on your body. It is NOT the Pill, capsule, syringe but your Belief system.The subconscious mind does the magic even before your conscious knows about it.

Hard to believe? Watch the following video to understand how subconscious mind works to heal illness.

When does Placebo Effect will not Work?

There are some situations, where Placebo Effect will NOT work. You need medical attention instantly for situations similar to these:

  • You faint all of sudden
  • Cut wounds
  • Cardiac Arrest
  • Accidents

Post medical attention in ICU, now you may ask your brain to the Placebo magic to recover faster.

Nocebo Effect:

Similarly to the placebo effect, there is something called Nocebo Effect can occur. The drug can also induce negative effect (side effects) if you think negatively about medication. That is why some drugs/pills will not work on you because you think the Doctor is not good enough. Here “not good enough” belief system carries on to drugs prescribed by him. It is similar to a situation where you tend you dislike everything a person do if you hate that person.

We recommend watching the videos of Dr B M Hegde (called as People’s Doctor) to learn more. Here are our best picks for you.

Here is another TED talk on The magic of Placebo:

Note: User discretion advised, the video contains blood at the end. If you faint looking at blood. Do not watch this at the end.

How to Practice Placebo Effect?

It is a process, you need to practice. Rather than taking pills, you can keep chanting to your brain that you’ll be alright. This fake belief system just works. It is similar to praying to God. We do not know about God existence but belief makes the things happen in our lives. Our body with its own chemistry learns to build the stronger immune system to act upon the illness and cure you. This may take time. But on the long run, there are NO side effects.

Another similar TED talks on how the mind influences your physical and physiological changes.

Many have changed the world with their beliefs. It is time for us to manage our body with our brain. Keep thinking positive, positive results will occur.


Praveen Hanchinal is an Educator, IT Consultant, Professional Speaker on Artificial Intelligence (AI, ML, DL), Cloud, Big Data, IoT (Internet of Things) and BlockChain. Have been working on AI, Cloud, Big Data, IoT technologies for 9.0 years. He is a Team Lead, Educator, IT Consultant, trains and gives talks on topics of his interest and educates people. Trained around 11000+ people which include teachers, students, industry professionals and government officials on recent technologies.

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