About Chinese Herbal Medicine
Traditional Chinese Herbal Medicine consists of 5,767 substances derived from plant, animal, and mineral sources. The use of these substances can be traced back to 1,000 BC. Over the past 3000 years, an incredibly rich and powerful system has medicine has been created. During this time, classical herbal formulas that are effective for many health concerns have been developed. The herbs are available in the form of herbal teas, liquid extracts, tablets, capsules, granules, lotions, creams, salves, or poultices.
What is a Chinese Herbal Formula?
Individual substances are rarely prescribed alone in Traditional Chinese Medicine. A carefully balanced recipe of several different herbs is specifically tailored for each person’s entire health condition. Each herb is chosen for its own specific functions. In addition, herbs can enhance the strengths and reduce the side effects of each other. The combination of substances in a formula creates a new therapeutic agent that can treat much more effectively and completely that a single substance.
What is the difference between Western Herbs and Chinese Herbs?
Western Herbal Medicine tends to use one or two herbs to treat just a specific symptom. A Chinese Herbal formula has as many as 20 different herbs. The herbs are selected to work synergistically to treat the whole person. In Chinese medicine, due to our diagnostic system, we are able to assess a persons whole constitution (the health of their whole body) and treat the root (or cause) of a health concern along with a branch (or the symptoms) of a health concern. It is in this way that we are able to treat a person’s whole body and mind, rather than just a symptom.
Safety of Chinese Herbs
One of the most appealing qualities of Chinese Herbal Medicine is the low risk of adverse reaction or side effects. Herbal medicine uses all the constituents of the plant, including the cellulose. The herb is completely balanced, and therefore has minimal side effects.
The most commonly reported adverse reaction is minor gastrointestinal upset. Modifying the herbal formula or adding herbs to strengthen the digestive system can remedy this. If you do notice any side effects, please stop taking your herbs and consult your herbalist right away.
Selection of Quality Herbs
To be confident that the herbs that you use are of the highest potency, quality, and safety; we only use herbs from manufacturers that are certified by the Therapeutic Goods Administration of the Australian government as having Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) – a hygiene guideline even more strict than in the United States.
They do not use endangered species (plant or animal), and they promote wildlife conservation through the use of surrogate natural substances.
Benefits of Herbal Medicine
The medicinal benefits of herbs have been known for centuries. In China, traditional herbal remedies are still the backbone of medicine, and although we rely heavily on modern research for new cures for some diseases, herbal medicines are also fundamental to Western society’s treatment of illnesses.
Initially, herbs were used individually, with each plant or each part of the plant used to cure a certain ailment. As people came to understand the differences between one person and the next, the need for more personalized treatments developed, and herbal blends became necessary. It is now commonly taught that herbs are more effective when used in a formula, because the proper combination of herbs increases the potency in the desired direction.
Herbal medicine can treat almost any condition that patients might take to their practitioner. In fact, modern researchers are finding that herbal medicines are often safer, less expensive, and at least as effective as prescription drugs. Unlike most Western medications, herbal remedies are completely natural and have no drug side effects.
Understanding What Sets Herbal Medicine Apart
Unlike in Western medicine, Chinese medicine does not treat a diagnosis; it treats you. Accordingly, we have to get to know you and your symptoms very well, which is why the we spend so much time taking your case, writing down all your symptoms and discussing each of them with you at length.
Patients are offered Herbal Medicine using three main different forms. Raw, powdered and pill form.