Botanical Medicine

Herbs have been used medicinally for many centuries by healers including Hippocrates and Galen, Chinese practitioners, Ayurveda practitioners, and even our mothers and grandmothers. Nature provides us the perfect mix of herbs to assist in recovery from illnesses and maintain health. Plants are different from their pharmaceutical counterparts in that they are often more gentle than drugs and they contain nutrients in addition to their "active" ingredients.

Herbs may be processed in various ways, including drying, alcohol extraction, cooking and desiccating to create teas, tinctures, capsules or solid extracts depending on an individual’s needs. They are not chemically altered as many pharmaceutical drugs are.

There is considerable scientific and clinical evidence for the effective use of botanicals. However, manufacturers of dietary supplements cannot, by law, claim that they treat or prevent disease and so cannot provide detailed information on how to use their supplements.

Botanicals are also commonly used to maintain health and prevent disease. There is good research to support these commonly used botanicals:

  • Immune-active botanicals such as echinacea strengthen and tone immune system.
  • Antioxidant botanicals, such as green tea, prevent cancer, slow aging, and maintain cardiovascular functions.
  • Botanicals such as St. John's wort, Valerian, and kava alleviate common psychological symptoms, such as insomnia, anxiety, or mild depression. It has also been used in combination with black cohosh to relieve mood symptoms associated with menopause.
  • Botanicals such as ginger treat or prevent a variety of gastrointestinal problems, from nausea to constipation.

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