It is no surprise that many people are practicing herbal remedies and embracing holistic lifestyles. However, insurmountable misconceptions and myths surround herbalism which unfortunately results in many effective treatments getting overlooked without a second thought.
Herbs have been used since as early as 60,000 years ago by our Paleolithic ancestors, when the way of life was hunting and gathering. Furthermore, the ancient Babylonians, Chinese, Egyptians, Indians and Native Americans were all herbalists, the oldest known list of medicines dates back c. 3000 B.C. As the saying goes old is gold, so are tried and tested herbal remedies that have been passed down for generations.
The tug of war between natural healing and fallacy stops here! Keep reading to learn top herbal rumors and myths that should be debunked in 2019.
Myth #1: The Natural Label Means It’s Good for You
Most of us have been duped by food and supplement manufacturers who put the word “natural” on their product but have no ingredients to back it up. Quite a lot of consumers have a tough time understanding nutrition labels. The easiest way to reading a label is to scan the first three ingredients, these make up majority of the formulation that goes into the product. The better you know, the more likely you are to reach for brands that make balanced formulas which are indeed authentically natural, such as Herbion Naturals.
Myth #2: Herbal medicines don’t work
Even though dinosaurs are extinct, Herbalism has survived and for good reason. Over the passage of centuries, healing herbs have relieved and rejuvenated humans who may have contracted diseases or suffered from degenerative conditions. Approximately 80% of Asian and African countries use traditional herbal medicine in some form or another for primary healthcare. It is estimated that the global annual market for herbal medicine will reach $111 billion by the end of 2023, this market is projected to grow at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of ~7.2% during 2017-2023.
Herbs contain active principals that react in the body the same way as prescription drugs would. The significant difference is that each herb contains a variety of chemical groups which work together. The same herb can have numerous uses and can be mixed with other herbs for treating different ailments. Certain herbs work fast and certain take time to build up in the human body since they have a gentle healing effect as opposed to allopathic treatments. This myth usually arises when remedies take longer to produce results.
Myth #3: No research is conducted
Tons of US dollars are being invested in conducting thorough research on herbal supplements including clinical trials and pharmacological actions. Growing number of studies are being conducted on herbal remedies and published in Western scientific journals which entail with conventional medicine. These publications are dedicated to efficacy, interactions and safety of natural medicine usage. There is extensive research done on Chinese herbal medicines from 2010- 2017 and usefulness of herbal products from 2002-2017. Such in-depth research enables herbal medicine to be manufactured and distributed on a global scale.
Myth #4: Herbalism is the same as Homeopathy
Quite a number of people get these two concepts mixed up. Simply put herbalism incorporates herbs to cure the illness itself, however, homeopathic remedies are based on the principle of “like cures like.” Which means the medicine which can cure a certain symptom can also produce these symptoms in healthy individuals. This principle of similar does not exist in herbal medication. Another significant difference is that of the medicine preparation process. Homeopathy requires all natural substances to be processed through serial dilution, which requires vigorous shaking in between each dilution. This process eliminates toxicity of the herbs and increases the therapeutic benefits. For herbal medication however this process is not utilized, since it is formulated with oils distilled from plants or dry extracts derived from different parts of the herb.
Myth #5: Herbal Medicine Not Meant for Serious Ailments
Apart from treating day to day illnesses, serious conditions can be cured with herbal medicine. Healing herbs have been known to aid the treatment of high blood pressure, high cholesterol, Type 2 Diabetes, low sex drive, arthritis and many others. A research conducted in 1998 on cardiovascular disease concluded cardioactive glycosides, which have positive inotropic actions on the heart, are present in a number of herbs, such as D. Purpurea (foxglove) or Digitalis Lanata, and Digoxin, derived from D. Lanata.