Chinese herbal remedies have been in use for thousands of years to treat injuries and illnesses. The oldest known study of Chinese herbal medicines, the Shennong Herbal Classic, dates back to the 5th Century BC and it is the source of many important formulas that are still in use today.
Chinese herbal remedies usually fall into three groups;
- Food herbs
- Medicinal herbs (two groups)
You can eat food herbs as part of your diet forgeneral fortification, prevention of illness and maintenance of your body. Medicinal herbs are dispensed as individual herbal formulas based on your constitution, environment and medical condition.
If you are diagnosed with a condition, you can first have treatment with acupuncture and then a specialist with herbs can create an herbal formula from over one thousand common herbal formulas or from more effective traditional family formulas. The herbal therapy works with acupuncture by providing the nourishment required for the energetic ‘reprogramming’ and ‘rebalancing’ efforts of acupuncture. Side Effects
Normally, a Chinese herbal remedy mix is in balance with the body and so there are little or no side effects. This is not always the case as it depends on the condition that needstreatment and the skill of the herbologist who mixed the herbal remedy.
The Opinion of Western Medicine
Western medics have always been sceptical about traditional Chinese medicine. Many articles have been published in Western medical journals discussing the relative benefits of Chinese medicines. In 1999, a UCLA School of Medicine report found that a natural supplement based on Chinese red-yeast-rice is a highly effective treatment for high cholesterol levels. A 1998 study by medical researchers from the University of Sydney found that Chinese herbal treatments are effective in treating Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).
One of the most commonly used and popular herbs used in Chinese medicines is Ginseng. The “King” of Chinese herbs, as it is also known, can cost up to thousands of dollars for the highest quality roots. Most people will not want to use the highest quality Ginseng, but will be happy to substitute it for the more affordable Codonopsis Root (Dang Shen)
Normally, a herbologist will mix these remedies in carefully prepared combinations. Some of the individual ingredients are difficult to find unless you are a specialist. You can buy Chinese natural remedies from numerous sources, including:
- Prescriptions from health professionals like acupuncturists and others trained in the use of the herbal formulas.
- Health food products sold in stores
- Some products marketed by individuals
- Over the internet
Before you buy any Chinese herbal remedies, take some time to research on the internet and it is always best to consult with a specialist in the area to get a safe and appropriate diagnosis.