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The Placebo Experiment: Can My Brain Cure My Body - BBC2

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(Image credit: BBC/Windfall Films/Maia Krall-Fr)

Michael Mosley treats volunteers with backache with fake pills - which they believe are painkillers - to see if they will react to the placebo effect in BBC2's The Placebo Experiment: Can My Brain Cure My Body

Michael Mosley, the doctor who brought us the 5:2 diet, is in Blackpool to undertake a fascinating experiment for Horizon.

The town, made famous by its tower and ballroom, has one of the highest rates of chronic back pain in the country, which is why the trial is taking place here.

Horizon - The Placebo Experiment: Can My Brain Cure My Body?

Dr Mosley experiments with a vile-looking green drink

Over a three-week period, 117 sufferers are given a ‘new painkiller’ to treat their illness, with nearly half reporting that they feel better, bringing a new lease of life to some of the group.

However, all the volunteers have actually been taking a placebo, which proves recent research that the power of the mind is underrated, and that the brain, in some people, can produce a painkiller stronger than any drug.

TV Times rating: ****