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C4 orders six parter on home remedies from Outline

C4 orders six parter on home remedies from Outline
Pippa Considine
06 August 2013

Channel 4 has commissioned a new six-part series Health Freaks (w/t) from Outline Productions. 

The format will see a broad range of popular home remedies put to the test to see if they have any medicinal value.

Each week a series of DIY remedy pitchers who swear by a particular treatment or 'cure' will present their favoured remedy to a panel of three GPs - Dr Pixie McKenna (pictured), Dr Ayan Panja and Dr Ellie Cannon.

The panel will then debate each pitch. Is the proposed cure just an old wives tale? Is it essentially harmless or could it be potentially dangerous, or might there be reason to believe it might actually work?

If the GPs panel decides that the treatment deserves further investigation they will send it for a trial or lab test, designed by the show’s scientists, to further examine the remedies efficacy and reveal whether it might have any medicinal value. 

From breast milk curing infections and an oat bath that tackles psoriasis, to WD40 to cure achy joints, Health Freaks will investigate the efficacy of some of the country’s oddest and most widely known home remedies.

Health Freaks was commissioned for Channel 4 by Nick Hornby, commissioning editor for Features. The series will be series edited by Chris Walley and executive produced by Helen Veale and Ross McCarthy at Outline Productions.

The multiplatform dimension of Health Freaks will enable viewers to contribute by indicating whether they have had first-hand experience of the remedy in question. A live insert into the otherwise pre-recorded programme will feed the results of viewers’ engagement during the show back into the programme, just before the test or trial outcome is finally revealed.

Nick Hornby said: “GPs are frequently faced with self-medicating patients but rarely have the chance to examine the hand-me-down remedies that these patients swear by.”

Health Freaks will air on Channel 4 this autumn.

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